Thomas Farley, the Knight of Wall Street

With his Hollywood smile and suave good looks, he’s central casting for the next 007 espionage extravaganza. While you won’t find Thomas Farley outwitting international criminal masterminds anytime soon, you will find this intrepid 39-year-old at the helm of the NYSE.

Big Board’s New Champion

Farley who? You probably recognize his name from last year’s Fortunes 40 under 40 list when he was listed as one of the most influential young people in business.

Son of a retired federal judge and decorated Vietnam veteran, he is the second-youngest person in history to run the Big Board. An impressive resume for this former Georgetown University baseball player, nicknamed “Solid”, led up to his appointment: by his 30th birthday he was already head of the New York Board of Trade (NYBOT). During his tenure there, Tom completely transformed the former NYBOT (renamed ICE); by doubling the trading volumes the (now) ICE saw a six-fold rise in profits.

His new role might be undeniably daunting. Yet, despite a busy schedule, staying fit is vital for this WWE fan, whose early-morning workout group includes Olympic swimmers Conor Dwyer and Matt Targett, as well as the Australian actor Hugh Jackman!

Mission: Keeping the old man of Wall Street in the game!

Tom’s goal is to revitalize the entire institution by simplifying everything – from the NYSE’s trading systems to its office space and, most importantly, by reshaping its culture. “I told him I want our culture to be the one that survives,” to quote Jeffrey Sprecher, CEO of ICE. Consequently, when Thomas Farley took control of the New York Stock Exchange, he didn’t only overhaul management, he immediately pushed to revamp its entire trading philosophy.

In a world where financial markets no longer need costly physical institutions to handle trades, reviving the 223-year-old icon of capitalism is no easy job! Seem like mission impossible? Not for Tom!

What do you think of Thomas W. Farley, the young President of NYSE Group? Does he inspire you?

Picture above: Courtesy of NYSE

Omnichannel Revolution underway…

“Omnichannel” is not just the new buzzword to replace “crosschannel” or “multichannel” in the constantly evolving world of Marketing terms. In fact, these terms are very often incorrectly used or used interchangeably by some pundits, as if they had the same meaning! While multichannel simply means having a presence on more than one channel or platform and crosschannel is about, seamlessly and interchangeably, using multiple channels to market, sell, and interact with your customers, on the other hand, Omnichannel is about true continuity of customer experience beyond a single brand’s universe!

The Ultimate Customer Experience

The reality today is that Internet has forced the pace of evolution on businesses in every field or industry globally! Nobody is spared! Customers’ expectations have changed a lot in the past decade and social media has totally evolved the engagement between brands and their customers. For brands, an Omnichannel strategy, designates the aim of delivering consistent brand experience across all possible channels. Brands adopting an omnichannel strategy are wary about providing the same experience and message across different channels and devices involved within their interactions with customers. As a result, businesses are very attentive to the fact that the customers’ shopping journey is not fragmented, but completely seamless. Keeping up with the aspirations of tech-savvy customers regarding brand visibility, availability, service quality and satisfaction are the prerequisites in an Omnichannel environment…

Omnichannel: Turning Evolution into Revolution

Omnichannel is not just a marginal evolution of existing concepts but something that is absolutely going to revolutionize the retail, marketing and global business landscape! Customers are already transacting in an Omnichannel way, and hence, for brands, this can be translated as follows: aligning the brand to the connected-customer needs in order to generate brand loyalty and secure competitive advantage. In other words, it allows brands to get closer to their customers and make customized offers and at the same time, it brings many virtues to customers including enjoying the convenience of their preferred channel, a wider selection of items and a wealth of buying opportunities. Renowned brands like Sephora, Starbucks, Virgin Atlantic, Disney or Macy’s are already reaping the benefits of this strategy. Let’s take Macy’s. There has been a stark contrast in earnings compared to the lackluster figures reported in previous quarters driven mainly by Macy’s investments in its digital efforts. The famous US department store’s omnichannel strategy has been finally paying off!

Will Omnichannel become omnipresent? One thing’s for sure, it is a win-win for everyone! Not to mention that it blurs the lines between online, brick-and-mortar, smartphones and social media for a five-star seamless shopping experience. There is no doubt that Omnichannel is gathering momentum. Not only is it here to stay but businesses not yet present in the Omni arena will strive hard to compete!

Do you know other successful examples of an Omnichannel Strategy ? Feel free to share.

Ultra-exclusive social Networks

Tired of Facebook? Too many invites, pokes, unrequited connections or even worse, leaks in privacy… Well, you will soon be able to leave the world of “been there, done that” behind when you discover these new exclusive networking sites …

Welcome to the social world!

Over the past two decades, one of the most dynamic developments related to digital media has been the rise of social network sites. Despite what you would have thought that the current buzz around social media would facilitate engaging in meaningful conversations with like-minded people, it has, in fact, become quite challenging… Do you remember being a member of a “cool club” in your student days? Yet, once anyone can join the “cool club”, it’s not cool anymore! This very idea has given rise to a new breed of ultra-exclusive social networks.

So if you are tired of being overwhelmed with irrelevant connections and want to have meaningful exchanges with your peers, take a look at these five top-notch social networks…

A new breed of social networks

Seeking to engage with like-minded individuals all around the world? Affluence brings it members exclusive, high-quality content and advice from industry experts on topics like art, technology and travel. Squa.re is a community-generated internet TV focusing on nightlife, style, high living and luxury travel. The world of Eleqt will help you live your “life in style” by keeping you up to date with the latest trends from fashion to finance. It’s also a great tool to meet fascinating people during exclusive social events, as well as discovering the finest buzzing hot spots from restaurants, hotels to nightclubs. Along the same lines, Pursuitist showcases remarkable experiences and products by bringing you the hottest information on online travel, style, food and top leisure destinations. And last, but certainly not least, EO, with their “business-oriented” vibe, lets you engage with the world’s most influential community of entrepreneurs.

Ultimately, it’s about who you are, what you are achieving and how you are achieving it that will define where you want to be in the world of social media!

Are you a member of a high-end online social network? Is it worth it? Share your thoughts with me.

Picture above: Courtesy of Brainsonic ©