Et si on changeait ? par Laure Hamel

Changer… Oui mais comment ? Pour qui et pour quoi ? Et par où commencer ?
Si on peut être convaincu de la nécessité de « changer » – qu’il s’agisse d’un procédé, d’une situation, d’un discours, d’une manière de faire ou de voir les choses – la prise de décision et la mise en action n’ont rien d’évident.

Le changement est une mise en mouvement.
D’un état présent à un état futur encore indéterminé. Fantasmé peut-être mais inconnu par définition, sans garantie ni certitude. Le changement peut être voulu ou subi, engendrant plus ou moins de résistances voire de réticences.
Le changement bouscule et perturbe, il nous sort de note zone de confort, déplace nos repères et nos propres frontières.

Le changement demande du courage.
Le courage d’oser, certes. Mais également le courage d’être imparfait, le courage de tenter, d’essayer, d’ajuster et de réagir au besoin. Le courage de ne pas rester insatisfait, de vouloir s’adapter, rebondir, de se remettre en question. D’affronter ses doutes et la responsabilité de ses décisions.

Le changement s’accompagne.
Parce qu’il demande de faire des choix éclairés et conscients, de lever peut-être des barrières, de contourner certains obstacles. Parce qu’il nécessite de la bienveillance, de l’encouragement et une écoute active.

Le coaching de marque s’inscrit dans cette volonté d’accompagnement au changement.
Il s’adresse aux marques qui souhaitent évoluer, s’adapter, grandir, faire le point, franchir un cap. Des marques convaincues de l’importance de leur identité et de la cohérence entre leurs valeurs, leurs messages et leurs actions face aux cibles et aux marchés visés.
Le coaching de marque apporte un éclairage concret sur une situation donnée, pour atteindre un objectif nouveau et porteur de sens, au regard des besoins et des attentes exprimés.
S’appuyant sur une méthodologie rigoureuse, il permet à une marque de révéler tout son potentiel, en valorisant ses atouts et sa singularité, grâce à une stratégie et d’un plan d’action personnalisés.

France is opened for business, by Fabrice Folliot

After finally emerging from a near 10 years slump, France is now opened for business more than ever as all lights seem to have turned green. Unemployment figures are improving slowly, although remaining stubbornly too close to the 10% mark. Growth is back, at a level achieved last in 2011, with good signs going forward particularly when looking at the labour temping sector, up in the region of 12% in 2017, always the first sign of better times coming. And deficits have reached a peak and should start decreasing, always a good measure for the long term credibility in any plan.

The change is there, in a country traditionally slow to accept reform to its social and economic model. Very difficult labour law reforms have gone through relatively unchallenged by the far left political opposition and the normally strong power of the streets. France economy is liberalizing, flexibility is no longer a bad word, entrepreneurship is encouraged, not vilified. Notwithstanding several reforms on the social, political and educational front. France looks like entering into the 21st century, in a relatively unified fashion.


Confidence key

Big question is, will it last in this conservative country?

Confidence and competitiveness are key in France, confidence more so. It always was. Indigenous consumption represents 2/3 of GDP. And without that pillar, the French economy is engineless, particularly when investment and exports, the two other economic legs, have been so underperforming for years due to outside factors at first (economic and financial crisis) but, more structurally, to a lack of competitiveness or, said differently, a lack of structural reforms.

So, that confidence, gone missing in the face of globalisation, undermined by years of austerity -although quite relative in comparison with what we’ve seen in Ireland- as been found again. A continuing employment improvement and rising standard of living are the two main interlinked drivers for it. If the demand for employment is strong, wages will rise. More employment coupled with better wages equals higher consumption, meaning economic growth, meaning employment ect… The virtuous cycle. So, it is safe to say that France is on the right track, and that better times are ahead, and that this cycle is there to stay, for as long as the results are there to substantiate the radical turn taken. They will justify the reforms, and confidence in the path taken will strengthen.


An opportunity for Ireland

These back winds represent great opportunities for all Irish economic sectors. France is a strong trade partner in Ireland as is. Increased consumption and investment will drive the need for goods and services. And in the face of Brexit, this is good news for all Irish exporters.

Timely enough, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar met with French president Emmanuel Macron for the first time recently. Two newly appointed political leaders, among the youngest in the world, sharing a common agenda and ambition on many fronts. Of course, not all is perfect, there is the long standing taxation stance disagreement. The 12.5% rate on one side, Macron’s EU convergence agenda on the other. This being exacerbated in recent month by the debate over the so called GAFAs, the giant internet corporations, and the Apple situation as a prime example. But even on that contentious front, the two countries share the common vision for a fairer tax system, at least officially, even if Ireland favours a global solution to this, and France a European one. Aside this issue, the common interest is there, personified by two leaders with chemistry obvious enough for everybody to see:

-A shared liberal economic approach.

-A shared pro European vision, with a common agenda for reform and citizens and civic society engagement on its future.

-A strong agreement on protecting their agricultural sectors within the EU. It has long been the case that the two farming communities, and the respective politicians, stand shoulder to shoulder in Brussels for many decades.

-A renewed support from France for Irish concerns in the Brexit context as it recognizes Ireland to be the country most affected.

Irish and French friendship is very strong. Always was, over centuries. Following Brexit, France will become Ireland’s closest ally in the EU.

“And not just geographically,” Mr Macron said it was reported.


Why should you choose good design ?

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” – Steve Jobs

Of course, you can find your own logo online and it will be cheap.

Of course some applications now help you for the design.

Of course, design can be seen as a luxury.

But what about having a logo that suits your own personality, that sticks to your story, that makes your brand consistent with who you are !

Your brand needs more from you. But sometimes it’s someone else, a Marketing and Design’s specialist, who will be the best to know what will perfectly suit you. The more your visual identity looks like you, the more you can reach your target market, namely the one you can offer your best.

Good webdesign is a very important marketing tool. “An image can communicate even complex messages quickly, concisely and memorably” Cole Sletten, creative director said. “The best brands … feel more like real, multifaceted personalities than collections of graphical elements“, Sletten also said.

Good stories are no use without good and consistent design !

So let’s make a great first impression. Trust professional designers who will spend many hours listening, analysing and searching the best design for you and your customer.

A good designer is a good Marketer, a good Psychologist, a good Director and a good Coach. And no application will replace such an expertise.

See how much loved brands have invested in Design : Apple, Pinterest, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, Nike, Lego, etc.

Good design means good business, as Thomas Watson Jr. from IBM discovered in 1973. There is no such powerful tool to reassure and convince. Good design wisely connects with emotions and intuition.

Design makes understand quickly and correctly what you sale to who. It brings a brand to its target market much more easily. The power of pictures is incredible.

Good design is long lasting. See how old are the logos of the most famous brands !

Good Design is so important that Design Thinking methods are more and more used and approved by industrial projects. It definitely settles the designers as legitimate members of dream teams. « Design is intelligence made visible » for Alina Wheeler. So true.

Innovation today is inextricably linked with design and design has become a decisive advantage in many countries.

Good design takes time to build and money to spend but it will make you a better commercial. It will make you fly ! That’s why we love our jobs, as it’s a changing-life activity !

So.. why France ?

First of all, Brexit is now a current reality which forces Ireland to seek new EU friends. This can be an opportunity. For example, France is the largest buyer of Irish sheep meat. Also, Brexit now leaves the UK with reduced access to the French market, could this be good news for Irish sheep farmers? The Irish whiskey sector is another industry which will also possibly benefit from Brexit.

Ireland will now remain the only Anglophone country in the EU, it is also still a substantial base for US foreign direct investment into Europe and a country who has maintained strong important links with the US.

The links between Ireland and France are evident and strong too.

Not only is France a key partner in Europe with respect to a wide range of foreign policy issues, but Ireland and France have a very strong trading relationship. Ireland benefits a lot from the French market. It is, after all, the leading export market for Irish lamb, seafood and artisan beer, the second largest export market for Irish beef and the third largest market for Irish whiskey.

As the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charlie Flanagan, said : « Ireland must continue to build on these very strong foundations while also ensuring appropriate diversification of the export offering ». Enterprise Ireland also shares similar advice.

What about the French market ?

We must be honest and admit that France’s economic growth is not tremendous at the moment. But, however, the French love eating! Here are some of the most consumed foods in France : pasta, rice, bread as well as cheese, milk, French fries and alcohol… Did you know that Britain sold an exceptional amount of cheese and other foodstuffs to France in 2014 ?

The French are becoming more and more conscious when it comes to choosing their groceries. Just like in Ireland, people are beginning to take preference of foods that are organic and natural.

So what do Ireland-France relationships consist of ?

In the two countries, there is a common appreciation of one another’s culture : we both welcome large numbers of tourists from our respective countries and our cultural and historic links stretch back centuries.

Indeed, the Irish are familiar with the French culture from visiting and experiencing it first-hand on holidays. Although it may come across as though the French lack fluency in English sometimes… But most businesses – especially start-ups, love the English language ! And the Emerald Isle continues to enjoy a strong image in France.

Likewise, France has always appreciated the true Irish spirit : Remember how the Boys in Green celebrated in Paris during the Euro 2016? Irish football fans were even awarded the Medal of the City of Paris !

From a French point of view, the Irish are the good students of the European Union, they don’t complain, they are resilient and they work hard. The Irish could perhaps tell us how to have a strong good minded spirit ! Perhaps it’s a question of religion and faith, perhaps not. The fact is that the Irish present themselves as well-educated/welcoming/benevolent, namely more than we are in general in France ! And that is very important, especially if you aspire to do business anywhere in this world !