My daughter is a CEO at just 11 years old
Startups
by The Startups Team
4h ago
My daughter, Alyssa, was just 6 years old when she asked why none of her game characters had natural Afro hair like hers. I didn’t really think much of it.  I just thought “I’ll find some other options for her. ” But this wasn’t as straightforward as I thought it would be. Hair-raising truths Either the characters were black but without Afro hair or Afro hairstyles were being depicted in a culturally appropriated way. Children naturally want to get creative with their game characters, they want to personalise them, like a version of themselves – it’s how they start to form their identitie ..read more
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How much for fries? Why Wendy’s dynamic pricing could be bad move
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
2d ago
American fast food chain Wendy’s has sparked a number of X spats after its CEO announced the company would begin testing dynamic pricing in 2025. As part of a $20 million investment in new digital menu boards, CEO Kirk Tanner noted this would provide enhanced features like day-part offerings along an AI-enabled menu that changes based on selling suggestions. The move has proved controversial as Cheeseburger Deluxe eaters have interpreted this as an Uber-like surge pricing strategy that will drive up the price of food items based on demand. In response to criticism, the CEO clarified “ we have ..read more
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Hold on: 6 ways to make customer wait times better
Startups
by Stephanie Lennox
2d ago
The British are known for championing an orderly queue, but patience has its limits. Endlessly waiting on hold for a customer service representative can turn frustration into full-blown exasperation, harming not just your customers’ moods, but also your company’s brand reputation. It’s not just businesses that are suffering reputational harm due to unacceptable call waiting times. HMRC has been in the news this week due to similar complaints, particularly for the Self Assessment helpline. A 2023 article from the Association of International Accountants details average wait times exceeding 22 m ..read more
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Return to office policies: are they likely to work?
Startups
by Stephanie Lennox
3d ago
The war rages on between enterprises and your everyday employee who just wants to avoid the daily commute. Take a look at multinational accounting firm Ernst & Young Global Limited (EY) adding ‘Big Brother’ style UK office attendance monitoring through its turnstile data, and Deutsche Bank most recently joining the banks adamant about employees returning to their offices. These new return-to-office (RTO) policies bring into question office culture and the implications of monitoring your employees' every move, or trying to force participation.  How ethical is it? Does it work? And what ..read more
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How do virtual influencers now earn 9X more than us?
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
3d ago
Virtual influencers can earn their creators nine times the average UK worker monthly salary from a single Instagram post, according to a recent study. Data published by intelligent enterprise solutions provider SAP.com delver into the earning potential of the top 60 human replica AI influencers, with the top content creator earning a whopping £26,700 per post The top earner, virtual influencer Noonoouri, was recently given a record deal by Warner Music and has previously landed lucrative endorsement from brands like Marc Jacobs and Balenciaga. The swiftness with which AI-generated content can ..read more
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What is Mistral AI and why is it partnering with Microsoft?
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
4d ago
Microsoft has announced a new multiyear partnership with French Large Language Model developer AI startup, Mistral, taking an undisclosed stake in the company. The partnership announcement has brought the startup to world attention. At just 10 months of age, the tech firm is already valued at €2 billion and is one of the fastest growing AI startups globally. The deal will see Mistral’s open and commercial language models available on Microsoft’s Azure AI platform, making it the second company to have such an offering, alongside OpenAI. “With Azure’s cutting-edge AI infrastructure, we are reach ..read more
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How to apply for Japan’s digital nomad visa
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
1w ago
After a long wait among the digital nomad community, Japan has announced that in March it will be introducing a new digital nomad visa scheme that will allow remote workers to stay and work in the country for up to six months. The move means Japan will be joining other Asian countries including Malaysia and Indonesia that are welcoming UK employees looking to break away from the classic 9 to 5. Although Japan’s Immigration Services Agency (ISA) is yet to announce the precise details of the application process and the specific jobs that will be encouraged, here’s everything we know so far. What ..read more
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Always on culture: how to counter its business risks
Startups
by The Startups Team
1w ago
We all know the scenario. You’re relaxing in the evening and your phone gives off a suspicious ping. ‘I’ll just deal with this email,’ you think. ‘It won’t take long’.  Before you know it, your relaxing evening has blended into your working day, and your personal phone is being used for work yet again. Technology gives us the option of being ‘always on’ when it comes to business – answering calls on the school run or spending the commute on emails instead of being tied to our desks. But this means that boundaries between professional and private life are increasingly blurred. Busines ..read more
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Right to disconnect: rules about contacting staff out of hours
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
1w ago
It’s 8pm and your boss is ringing you on your mobile. Your normal hours are the classic 9 to 5 and you haven't agreed on anything about working after hours. You pick up the phone in case it’s an emergency – it isn’t. Awkward situations like these, where your personal time is interrupted by a professional call, are a strong reminder of the importance of allowing employees to disconnect from work outside of normal working hours. As more employees work from home or use their personal mobiles to handle work tasks, many are finding it difficult to switch off. To understand the importance of disconn ..read more
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How to say ‘no’ at work – professionally
Startups
by Fernanda Alvarez Pineiro
1w ago
An extra work task when you’re already up against it. Taking on a new project in a packed quarter that’s full of initiatives. Being asked to plan a meeting you’d rather not even attend. The pressure to constantly say ‘yes’ and take on more can feel never-ending in the modern workplace. But, what if the key to unlocking productivity and wellbeing is being able to confidently say ‘no’? To understand why saying ‘no’ is a powerful skill to have, we’ll walk you through how and why you should pause before you say ‘yes’ to an additional workload. We provide real tips on delivering a firm but respectf ..read more
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