Bye to bottlenecks

9 October 2012
Saint H<div style=St Homobonus, the patron saint of shoemakers, tailors and purchasing, has a monthly column in SM… Bye to bottlenecks Ideal for stacking, storage and transportation, Heineken is reportedly working on the concept of a cube design for future beer containers. The idea is that it would do away with bottles clinking together and wasted space between the necks, making them more economical for packing and travelling from the factory to your fridge. Looks a tad awkward to drink from though, especially after a few… Marching orders England’s biggest baker, Greggs, has signed a deal to provide frozen food to a British military base in Germany after troops were asked what provisions they missed the most from home. The company has signed a 12-week deal with the Navy, Army and Air Force Institutes, the armed forces caterer, to supply items like Cornish pasties and sausage rolls to the base in Gütersloh and if it goes well, the contract could be rolled out globally. Napoleon Bonaparte said that an army marches on its stomach. Let’s hope that doesn’t literally become the case with this diet. Two-piece town In an example of how to ‘live the brand’, the founder and CEO of a US restaurant chain notorious for its scantily-clad female waitresses has decided to get some more, ahem, exposure by purchasing a deserted Texas town and renaming it after his business – Bikinis. Doug Guller, the millionaire behind ATX Brands, bought the town of Bankersmith through Craigslist and changed its name in 
honour of his empire. Short shrift At the bottom of an email 
I received from a business, I noticed it contained a list of abbreviations at the end, in the hope of dissuading people from using actual words. The message told me ‘ACT’ meant action was necessary, ‘NRR’ that no response was required, ‘REP’ meant I should reply and ‘EOM’ means ‘this is the message’ – although I think it stands for ‘end of message’. FYI this all seems ABP (a bit pointless) to me. Principled position Despite their often negative depiction and recent stories about mis-selling, buyers can be reassured most UK salespeople are concerned with principles, ethics and accountability. A YouGov survey commissioned by Xactly found a principled 
55 per cent would leave a job if they had issues with the item they were selling. And of the 196 sales professionals quizzed, almost a third (32 per cent) said they would leave if they felt colleagues were behaving unethically. Puppy love Ever read something and wondered if it was a joke? I have. Apparently, new pet owners – mainly of dogs, but also sometimes of cats – are taking ‘pup-ternity’ leave to settle in the new member of their family. Don’t panic, this isn’t a new HR rule you need to be aware of – employees are using their own holiday leave, sometimes weeks of it, to get their new puppy or kitten familiar with their environs. Pound for pound The city of Bristol has launched its own currency to try to encourage spending with local businesses. The Bristol pound, which can be used by exchanging sterling for the local currency, went live in September 
and can be spent with participating businesses 
in the region. One £B1 is equal in value to £1 sterling and firms can accept paper Bristol pounds in payment as they would for sterling. Creators claim that a local currency will help channel money into local, independent businesses. Access all areas When it comes to stakeholder relations, one team you might want to make friends with are the guys in IT. Research has found IT professionals are allowed to roam corporate networks unchecked, according to a survey of more than 450 IT professionals by Lieberman Software Corporation. It found that 39 per cent of IT staff can get unauthorised access to their organisation’s most sensitive information – including the CEO’s private documents – and one in five has already accessed data they shouldn’t. As the saying goes, just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not 
out to get you. Tweet of the month “I love working on 40-page social media contracts with legal, finance and procurement!” Said no one, ever. Pretty sure anyway. @jennbouyoukos
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