Category Archives: Corporate Strategies

How Can Humility Save the Entrepreneur? One Expert Has the Answer


Michael Dermer The Lonely Entrepreneur Book

Michael Dermer, founder of The Lonely Entrepreneur.

There’s a crushing, isolating pressure that engulfs many entrepreneurs as they try to transform a passion into a profession. Long days extend into exhausting late nights as they wrangle talent, negotiate funds, and wonder just how far away success (or failure) lies.

In the world of business, anything can happen and nothing is promised. No one knows this better than Michael Dermer, a lawyer, author, and life and career coach, who painstakingly built a company over 10 years only to see it collapse in 10 days during the financial crisis. Undaunted, Dermer turned the hard lessons he learned into an opportunity, launching a platform to help people start businesses with the support and knowledge they need.

The Lonely Entrepreneur — a book, website, and global community — is Dermer’s salve for the heartaches of entrepreneurship. Packed with learning modules, community connections, and expert advice, The Lonely Entrepreneur helps budding businesspeople get on their feet and take strides toward success.

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FinTech Experts Share Insights on the Future of Finance


Fintech Innovation Panel

Finance-industry experts from BlackRock, Blockchain, HSBC, BNY Mellon, and Coindesk spoke at our Future of Finance panel on December 7. Photo by Kait Ebinger.

The world of financial technology, also known as FinTech, is pushing the boundaries of how people exchange money — impacting everyone from mammoth banking institutions to individual consumers. On December 7, four finance luminaries joined us at General Assembly’s NYC headquarters for The Future of Finance, an intimate panel discussion exploring innovations in the financial sector.

The universal takeaway: Companies and leaders who aren’t paying attention to FinTech’s breakthroughs will be left in the wake of a revolution that is transforming a traditionally rigid industry into an agile economy driven by technological advances and open collaboration.

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Why You Should Break From Tradition When It Comes to Building Your Leadership Team


General Assembly campus in London

Nearly every company in the world is being shaped by new waves of technology, communication, and interaction with customers. Digital forces in particular are a huge concern for every one of the companies we work with at General Assembly. Leaders know they need to boost their digital readiness. But there remains the question of how to actually transform their organization, and what that can mean for their customers, employees, and shareholders.

During my 30-year career, I led Procter & Gamble’s Baby, Beauty, and Asia businesses, culminating with running P&G e-business — everything from helping to architect the digital transformation, to the incorporation of virtual tools, to develop breakthrough products and supply systems to digital marketing and eCommerce. I’ve harnessed my insights from three decades in the field to help companies answer that question of “How?” One clear way to make it happen is by improving leadership skills and creating digital leaders.

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The Value Prop Parallax: Understanding Consumers’ Values in a Digital Environment


3M has so much more to offer than just Post-it notes.

At General Assembly, we partner with the world’s greatest companies to assess and train their employees in today’s most in-demand skills. While building in-person and online training programs for a fifth of the Fortune 500, we have conducted consultative working sessions and stakeholder interviews with hundreds of teams in a variety of industries. These sessions provide incredible insights into the hurdles that incumbents face as consumer behavior changes.

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Your Guide to Making it Happen, Now


96540010 FINALAt any organization, there are always going to be more problems than there is time to solve them. But certain problems really need addressing–like, right now–and you know it. Unfortunately, these are the very ones that often go untended. They are the bigger picture problems that we don’t know exactly how to define, let alone solve.

As a doer in your organization, how can you force these important conversations to happen now?  How can you beat the: “Yes, this is definitely something our team is thinking about, but won’t be able to work on until Q2 of next year”?

Here are 6 tactics our team uses that will help you accelerate some of those stagnant conversations and seize the now:

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What Seizing the Now Looks Like at a CPG Giant


Mike Dubin, CEO Dollar Shave Club

You know what Mike Dubin isn’t doing right now? Reading any more articles about Mike Dubin.

He’s probably on a beach in Santa Monica, wondering how he’ll spend the $90 million he made when Unilever bought Dollar Shave Club, a subscription razor service he founded in 2011, for $1 billion in July. (In all honesty, he’s probably at a desk–he’s staying on with Unilever–but, considering his windfall, I’m going to be picturing him on a beach regardless.)

You already knew about Mike, though. It was an acquisition that launched a thousand articles and will likely sustain the dreams of rabid founders, and their VC handlers, for years to come.

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Deb Henretta has 30 years of CPG experience in her past. So what does she think about the industry’s future?



Deb Henretta is joined by Charlie Schilling, GM of General Assembly’s Enterprise business, at a Q&A event on October 12.

On Wednesday, October 12, the General Assembly enterprise team hosted Deb Henretta, the former Group President of Procter & Gamble, for breakfast and Q&A at GA’s New York campus. Deb is a 30-year veteran of P&G (ret. 2015) and ran various businesses–including the Global e-Business, Global Beauty, and Asia, among others–during her time there. During breakfast, she mentioned having 20,000 people under her.

Here are 5 tactics we learned from Deb about how CPG marketers and HR leaders can prepare their businesses for the future. Continue reading

How do product leaders transform their organizations?



Innovative organizations are transforming to be more customer-centric, value learning over winning, and to start with problems rather than products. Product leaders within these companies are the driving force behind such critical shifts, and understand that it requires stakeholder action to make an impact. Continue reading

How Would You Train Your Team to Make an Omelette? A Guide to High-Impact Training Programs


Train Your Team At General Assembly

Nobody sets out to create a poor learning experience. But creating a good one is not an easy task. To help train your team, General Assembly has developed a step-by-step process that guides creators through the planning of high-impact learning experiences. Whether creating an online or offline program, these principles are at the heart of great training.

Let’s pretend that we want to create a lesson to teach a group of people how to make an omelette. Let’s walk through the steps that we might take to create that lesson.

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The Call for Design Thinking Facilitators


Design Thinking is the latest competitive advantage for businesses across a wide range of industries: tech, education, retail and even aerospace. Design Thinking (DT) has received extensive coverage in major publications like Harvard Business Review and the New York Times. Relatively old stalwarts in the area like IDEO and Frog focus on design as a consultancy service. Companies like General Assembly offer training to everyone from large foundations to Fortune 500s. Other large corporations, like Capital One and Fidelity, are building in-house design teams that can both design and teach others throughout the organization to design.

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