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Tessellati Blog

Spontaneous Learning: The Debate Over In-Office or Remote Work

Posted by Ben Waxman Posted on Jan 18, 2024 5:30:00 AM

I need this couch moved to our second floor sitting area. Clearly this is going to take both of us working in tandem. 

“You want to go up first?” You ask. 

“Sure,” I say. 

I reach for the bottom and the side. You find your handholds as well. We lift in unison. 

I need to adjust my grip as I navigate the first stair. You feel the couch shift and adjust accordingly. We make eye contact over the bulky thing and nod to each other. We are innovating as we climb and adapt to the shift in weight and the angle of the couch with each step. 

Innovating together in real time. Communicating with words and body language. Collaborating on our way to achieving our goal. 

I have to give credit to my friend and colleague Dr. Michael Mascolo, Professor of Psychology at Merrimack College for this metaphor I’m employing. During a recent conversation with Mike, I was making observations about the debate over remote vs. in-office collaboration. We’ve all seen it: the loss of innovation and spontaneous learning when the whole team is working remotely. 

As much as we want to leave the commute behind, put a quick load of laundry in after the 9:30am Zoom call is done, even bake a banana bread mid-day, because, why not? Look, I’ve been running virtual teams since 1993 (mmm hmmm, that’s when I started consulting, dinosaur that I am). The power and efficiency of remote work is undeniable. 

And yet, and yet…also undeniable is the loss of opportunity for us to learn from each other (even at my dinosauric age, I am learning from the team here). What we all need is much, much more face-to-face interaction – from the fresh graduates entering the workforce to those with decades of experience. We grow and learn together in different ways. We innovate in real time. 

Over the past few years, we’ve been growing significantly here at Tessellati. More universities, healthcare providers, rising edtechs, nonprofits, and more have been tapping our expertise. So, we’ve been hiring more talent. The talent market has shifted and there are a lot of folks looking for greener pastures right now. 

Read on for a bit of perspective that I am surprised far too few current job applicants seem to grasp... 

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Topics: Intrapreneurship

How to Say ‘No’ to Ideas That Aren’t Good Enough

Posted by Ben Waxman and Reina Sekiguchi Posted on Jan 17, 2024 3:33:00 PM

When you need to focus on initiatives that will produce results and  justify that budget, these are the 5 questions you must ask. Because not every idea is great.  

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Topics: Intrapreneurship

Do You Understand You?

Posted by Ben Waxman and Reina Sekiguchi Posted on Jan 5, 2024 3:42:00 PM

How well can you talk about you? 

Quick! Give us your institution’s elevator pitch! Easy, right? 

What if the other person in the elevator is a 28-year-old from Milwaukee? Now a 17-year-old from Miami. Now you’re in an elevator in Shanghai. How about Mumbai? Ho Chi Minh City? Bogotá? 

If you’re a rep covering one of these places, chances are you’re well-practiced at spinning up your strongest differentiators for your given audience. But for marketing staff and administrators looking at the big picture, understanding each of your target markets gets a little harder. We know, that whole “only-24-hours-in-a-day” thing makes it difficult to keep up with the entire global student population. 

Your institution’s journey to effective messaging begins and ends with an understanding of who you are. 

Now before you spiral into an existential crisis, remember: as marketers, we’ve been leading these journeys of self-discovery for a long time. Read on for (some) of our secrets to understanding and communicating your value, no Eat Pray Love  required. 

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Topics: Intrapreneurship

So That’s Your Strategy

Posted by Ben Waxman Posted on Dec 27, 2023 5:30:00 AM

People look smart when they reference strategy. It elevates any discussion to greater importance as soon as the word strategy enters. Often, it gets others in the room thinking, “Right, maybe I’m not thinking about this strategically.” Followed by the thought, “What exactly would a strategic version of this discussion look like?” 

The idea of strategy is often misunderstood. I fully admit, it really can be difficult. I can’t tell you how many discussions I’ve been in where people describe their tactical execution plan as the strategy.  

A simple example of why folks get confused, and I’ll use what we know best, the world of marketing: Your marketing strategy requires great marketing content. Content is a tactic you will employ to achieve your strategic goal. Yet, you will need a content strategy to be successful. So, content is not a tactic. It is a strategy, right? No, it is a tactic in this scenario. A tactic that needs its own strategy. 

Oy vey. 

Our team, of course, lives in the world of marketing strategy, planning, and execution. Here we share some insights into how to simplify the discussion and confirm when you are employing a strategy vs. discussing the tactical execution of any given initiative. 

Read on and maybe we can shed some light on how to actually besmart in the discussion, not just look smart. 

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Topics: Intrapreneurship

Release Your Global Entrepreneur Spirit

Posted by Ben Waxman & Carrie Bishop Posted on Dec 20, 2023 5:32:00 AM

Those of us with an entrepreneurial spirit and a global network typically see things others don’t. In our view, the entrepreneur mindset is an asset, and yet…and yet, if only those in control of the purse understood what we understand about global markets and audience motivations.  

The opportunities are there for many of our clients. The need is growing increasingly intense as revenue sources, particularly in education and healthcare sectors, are threatened or declining. The Tessellati team shares your entrepreneurial enthusiasm and we are here to offer the insights that help you succeed. It’s one reason we connect so well with our colleagues like you.    

Now, if only there were an easy way to satisfy your global entrepreneurial instinct while demonstrating recruitment success in such a way as to unequivocally justify your funding requests and get the programs you envision started and growing.   

The simple truth: the root of successful international marketing lies in understanding your target markets, connecting with them, and effectively managing them over time. It has to do with simply doing the work as opposed to finding some magical online tool that suddenly produces all the enrollments you ever wanted. (Note the word magical in that last sentence). 

To DO the work, you’ll need to take a deep dive into the macro- and micro-economics of what drives customer interest. Sounds more complicated than it is.   

If you’ve been working with us, then you know we’ve been helping institutions like yours find global marketing success for a very long time. Our multi-cultural marketing team, our bandwidth, and the tech systems in place bring focus and produce macro and micro level insights. Oh, and meaningful results.  

Our work takes a load off our in-house counterparts who, like you, are being asked to over deliver while being chronically underfunded (and understaffed). We’ve seen what works and what doesn’t, including three common mistakes that will derail any international marketing program. Avoid these at all costs. Read on… 

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Topics: Intrapreneurship

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