PopupOffice – a Swiss company claims to evolutionize the office world

According to the New York Times, studies show that people who work at home are significantly more productive but less innovative. However, employees, especially younger ones, expect to be able to work remotely. And over all the trend is toward greater workplace flexibility.

The outcry surrounding a decision by the new Yahoo! Chief Executive Marissa Mayer to end work-from-home arrangements has shown just how strongly many companies and employees have embraced remote work, but it also underscores tensions between workers’ need for flexibility and their need for visibility.

PopupOffice is the name of a Swiss start-up company which follows the office nomad trend. Office nomads are often self-employed brain workers without an office of their own, sales representatives who travel a lot or home office workers who like to work in an office-like space for a change.

The business idea of PopupOffice is to rent not only office space but also prominent locations which are temporarily available such as galleries. Moreover, clients of PopupOffice become users who will have the opportunity to connect with other clients thus creating an “analog network” in combination with a digital booking tool.

We at the Lorange Institute of Business supported him with a Zurich Living Case. Below you find and interview with PopupOffice founder Mathis Hasler.

Peter Lorange

PopupOffice Logo
Mr Hasler, you signed up  a so-called Living Case, a case study. This is quite unusual for a start-up company?
“Indeed. We founded PopupOffice in March 2015 but started  team building in 2014. The reason why we needed the second opinion was to do with the fact that we hadn’t yet been successful. We were an empty shell. That is why we had to harden the shell. The case study was our hardening agent.

You put your business case under the microscope?
You could put it like that. The results of the case study give our business model a seal of quality. The Lorange Institute is a strong brand and an innovative business school. The market analysis is essential for discussions with potential investors.

How did you find out about the Lorange Institute?
Thanks to my network. A former workmate suggested that our business model should undergo a market analysis and recommended the Lorange Institute of Business. I was very keen on this idea. Students from the Executive MBA program, all with a great deal of managerial experience, write an analysis about our business case. They do it during the course ‘Modern Marketing” in only twelve days. Where else would you receive a paper written by experienced leaders in so little time?

How well matched were you, the innovative start-up company and the established business school?
Very good indeed. The Lorange Institute has proven to be more than a business school. An international faculty meets master’s course students from all over the world and together they build a network. Their innovative spirit and the idea of a network match with the idea of PopupOffice. Our offices are different from the currently used co-working spaces in so far as they become a means of communications and eventually a sales channel. The first is important with regards to the employer branding. Moreover, our customers become users with a profile. To book an office space they log in and after booking the space they become visible to other users. PopupOffice is an all-in platform.

What aspect did you find most  positive in cooperating with the Lorange Institute?
The Living CaseTM study was part of a twelve day marketing block. I even participated in the course for three half-days in the course. We discussed aspects of so-called disruptive innovation business models, which suited the idea of PopupOffice. We are a bit like Uber or irbnb and are trying to break into the real-estate and office market.

Final question: Were you to order a Living CaseTM again what would need  to be different from this one?
Let me put it like this: as a start-up every investment must have a direct return on this investment. In this respect the case study was a delicate matter because all we would get was a paper. Would we be ever capable of quantifying the study on our excel sheet? I therefore wish the business school had given our business even greater visibility in its network.

PopupOffice Work where life happens


Worauf es wirklich ankommt ist die Praxis

Geschätzte Leserinnen und Leser

Praxisbezug wird gross geschrieben – von ausnahmslos allen Business Schools. Verständlich: wer will schon in einer hemdsärmeligen Welt von Praktikern staubtrockene Akademie bieten.

Am Ende des Tages muss unsere Institut beide Teile gleichermassen anbieten: hier die theoretischen Grundlagen, dort die Möglichkeit, die Theorie in die Praxis umzusetzen.

Dafür haben wir schon vor fünf Jahren den Zurich Living Case geschaffen. Zurich Living Case heisst: statt theoretischer Fallstudien echte Business Cases. Zu jedem 12-Tages-Module (EMBA und EMSc) gehört ein Zurich Living Case. Eine Firma stellt den Studenten ein reales Consulting Projekt vor. Die Studiengangteilnehmer erarbeiten innerhalb der 12 Tage eine Lösung für den Business Case und präsentieren diese vor der Geschäftsleitung der Untenehmung.

Fallstudien am Lorange Institute of BusinessHandelszeitung, 18. September 2014 über die realen Fallstudien am Lorange Institute of Business

Ein solcher Praxisbezug ist ziemlich einzigartig in der Welt der Business Schools und wurde erst kürzlich von der Handelszeitung in der Sonderbeilage “MBA Special” thematisiert.

Den Artikel “Nähe zur Praxis – Das Lorange Institute lässt nur echte Fallstudien zu”, können Sie hier herunterladen (oder sie klicken weiter oben auf das Bild).

Gute Lektüre wünscht Ihnen Ihr

Lorange Institute of Business


Die Internetfalle – Autor Thomas Koehler am 7. Zurich Business Forum

Ob Internetfalle, den programmierten Menschen oder Outsourcing – der Autor dieser gleichnamigen Bücher, Thomas Koehler *), kennt sich mit Themen rund um die Begriffe „online“ und „digital“ wie kaum ein anderer aus.

Thomas Koehler ist einer der Top-Referenten am 7. Zürich Business Forum am 3. Oktober und spricht über die Frage: HOW CONSUMERS CHANGE AND ACT IN THE DIGITAL ERA.

Internetfalle KoehlerDieses Thema hat ihn, der seit 17 Jahren und somit als einer der Internet- Unternehmer der ersten Stunde tätig war, seit jeher beschäftigt.

Sein Bestseller „Die Internetfalle“ von 2010 (Neuauflage 2012) rüttelte noch vor den Enthüllungen von Edward Snowden die Fachwelt auf mit seinen Thesen rund um die Datenspuren im Internet und zeigte, wie man seine eigenen Online-Identität aktiv steuern kann.

Anfang 2013 erschien “Der programmierte Mensch” (auch in einer Ausgabe für die Schweiz – im Verlagsprogramm von NZZ Libro) und beschäftigt sich mit dem Manipulationspotential was in Internet und Smartphone steckt.

Dass wir neben zahlreichen anderen Referenten auch Thomas Koehler als Sprecher gewinnen konnten, freut uns überaus!

Ebenso freuen wir uns auf sein spannendes Referat – und Ihre Teilnahme!

Lorange Institute of Business und Team
7. Zurich Business Forum






*) Thomas R. Koehler beschäftigte sich sein ganzes Berufsleben lang mit Internet/IP/Mobilfunk-Technologien und deren Anwendung. Beruflich war er nach Stationen als wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter an der Universität Würzburg (Lehrstuhl Wirtschaftsinformatik) Internet-Unternehmer der ersten Stunde, Gründungsgesellschafter eines Softwareunternehmens für eCommerce-Logistik und seit 2007 überwiegend in der Beratung tätig – mit seinem Unternehmen CE21.

The cultural conservatism of contemporary business schools

Dear Reader

this time I share with you a paper, which might look a little bit old fashioned and abstract, as it consists of merely text.

Executive MBA in a modern Business SchoolClick and download the article

The purpose, however, ist quite interesting, as the piece is to examine and question aspects of the culture of the modern business school, and to investigate the possibilities for a more student oriented, more responsive, more flexible and performance-driven culture.

Business School “Old School”

In short, the paper is a critical discourse on the cultural conservatism of contemporary business schools, analysing the impediments to change, and examining the transformation
in the business education market and among students, that demand greater responsiveness.

Modern Business SchoolWhat are the needs of a modern, flexible business school?

Don’t you also think that the seismic changes occurring in technology and social practices beyond the business school are impelling business schools to adapt and become more agile?

This article provides insights into how a more flexible and responsive business school would operate and engage students. It delivers moreover a fresh assessment of where the business schools are, and where they will have to go to continue to engage the changing demands of business and managers.

Thank you for studying it and – share it!

Peter Lorange

CEO Magazine MBA Rankings: Results

Dear reader

You might remember that I am not the biggest fan of MBA rankings. However, magazines like the US CEO magazine never fail to impress me when they put our institute on a top position.

I am therefore delighted  to share with you that our Lorange Institute of Business ranked Tier One in the magazines MBA rankings.

CEO Magazine TIER ONEI want to emphasise: it was not me, but my team which achieved this success. You may may download all the rankings. Just click on the cover of the December issue featuring Jack Welch.

CEO Magezine December 2013
So, many congratulations to my team! Thank you for your permanent efforts!

Peter Lorange



Pedagogic Revolution: learn in 2 days what you’ve learnt in 5

Dear reader,

A lot has happened regarding learning pedagogy over the last few years. Some of you certainly remember the days, when teaching was a one-man-show. How many times did you lose the thread of what the teacher was saying? As a result, you learned less than you should, and definitely less than you could.what's the best teaching method?

Old school didactic teaching

Today, times have changed. We – and I am speaking solely of the Lorange Institute of Business – we are able to offer effective learning in significantly shorter time than before.

This is built on a principle of more active participation by you, the learners, including on more sharing of best practice. Nevertheless, not everything must be learnt in groups. An individual at home can perhaps best learn basics, taking advantage of current computer-based support. This would set free precious classroom time to be more focused on discussing current key dilemmas!

Here is how it works:

Flat-floors vs. auditorium

The classes take place in what I would call ‘flat rooms’, the opposite of auditoria. Classrooms with flat floors and round tables are better suited for discussions than auditoria with amphitheater rows of seats.

We use both forms, still - but what would you prefer?We use both, class room and auditorium, but what do you prefer?

Discussions vs. didactic teaching

The professor tends to “walk around” in the classroom and not to stand in a stationary manor behind a desk. He / she lectures for 20 minutes. – Research on cognition indicates that this represents about the maximum of the length that participants can concentrate. He / she only shows a few slides and articulates dilemmas for discussion

The participants, seated around round tables à 7 (max), pre-assigned to avoid corporate contrary and/or friendship liaises, are now discussing these key dilemmas again for 20 minutes.


Ken Low, CGI Group“I enjoyed the balance of a lecture with a pragmatic group discussion.  I was able to learn from the expert, from my peers, and from sharing views and experiences in a very efficient manner.” Ken Low, GCI Group


Plenary discussion

Finally, there is a plenary discussion among all – again for 20 minutes. The maximum class size would be around 35 participants – i.e. a maximum of 5 tables. The professor attempts to draw conclusions, written down on walls and flipcharts, and copied to the participants; or, using todays digital tools, working with an open document, accessible to all participants via cloud computing.

Results in 2 instead of 5 days

Tentative experience with this pedagogical approach are indeed promising – it seems as if one would need no more than 2 days to cover what one might have needed – ca. 5 days to cover in a classical classroom setting!


Logo Reederei Zürich AG“I very much liked the Shipping Markets workshop; it was very well and efficient time spent and I will definitely be back next year. The exchange of knowledge between the participants was great and the way we had the possibilities to interact.” Alexander Jönsson, Reederei Zürich AG


Implications: Busy executives will profit

Busy executives, more-and-more facing shortage of time, are those that above all seem to welcome the new pedagogy. The Lorange Institute of Business Zurich is in the lead when it comes to this.

Peter Lorange


Torben Janholt Just Water“Terrific! … I like the new format!” Torben Janholt, Just Water


Where and which Business School should you attend?

Dear reader

Why should a European executive travel to the USA to make an Ex. MBA?

There are reasons to do so. But there are also reasons to stay close to where you work.

In a remarkable article by the experienced MBA consultant Christiane Holländer, published last week by the German paper “Handelsblatt”, she made European business schools and their programs a subject of discussion and mentioned our business school as well.

You might already be aware that we at the Lorange Institute have a visiting faculty instead of a permanent faculty. She commentates on one core issue of a visiting faculty: after their teaching the professors leave and will only be back for the next module. That means there are little opportunities for discussions before or after let’s say a ten-day-module.

Artikel von Christiane Holländer in der deuteschen Handleszeitung

Click the image to download the article (5.5 MB)

But is this really true, and is it specifically true for a part-time Executive MBA? After completing a module, the participants go back to their jobs. Even with a permanent faculty they could not simply go and talk to the professors, but they might give them a call.

The same is true with a visiting faculty from overseas. Should participants really need to discuss something with a professor, they can rely on contemporary communications tools such Internet telephony, known as voice over IP, and, of course, e-mail.

I fully understand Christianes objection and would not want to play it down. However, I think that there are solutions for this issuee.

You can read Christiane Holländers article in this PDF. Simply click on the picture above to start the download.

Best regards,

Presenting faculty: Dr. Gianvito Lanzolla, Cass Business School

Dear reader

Until the end of this week we will go on with our two-week strategy module.

This block focuses on how to implement a growth-driven strategy, which also yields sufficient profits. The role of innovation is key and so is market segmentation as the basis for your strategy.

Three lecturers run the module. In one of our latest tweets we reminded you of Jamie Andersen. This time I present you Dr. Gianvito Lanzolla. He is currently a reader in strategy and director of the MSc in Management at Cass Business School, which he joined Cass in 2006 as a senior lecturer.

Prior to joining Cass he was a research fellow on the faculty of the London Business School (2003-2006).

Gianvito Lanzolla Lorange Institute of Business
Gianvito Lanzolla, Reader in Strategy and Director of the MSc in
Management at Cass Business School

Gianvito teaches strategy, corporate strategy and advanced strategy analysis in Cass MBA and MSc programs, both in London and Dubai. He is the recipient of the Cass 2009 “Excellence in Teaching” award.

His research investigates strategies and capability configuration mechanisms that firms should adopt to successfully deal with rapid technological and institutional change.

Gianvito works with companies and executives in fast paced industries  and has undertaken assignments in Europe, the Middle East, India, and the USA with several leading organizations including: Alghanim, Allianz, BSkyB, BT, IBM, ING, Nokia, Times of India, Unicredit, Vodafone Group and Vodafone India.

By the end of this week, he’ll be leaving, as our entire faculty is a part-time faculty. This allows us to permanently draw on leading specialists. During August 2013 Gianvito Lanzolla will be back at our institute for another two-week strategy module. I will early enough inform you about his comeback.

Peter Lorange

P.S. You’ll find his research output published in leading outlets –

  • Academy of Management Review
  • Journal of Management
  • Harvard Business Review
  • Production and Operations Management
  • Business Strategy Review

Social Media: Where’s the Beef?

Dear reader,

faculty member Gordon Adler ** is a communications specialist and has been in the business for many years. Recently he published an article in the GAA magazine „News+More“ (alumni) on social media and posted it in his blog.

With his friendly permission we quote his blog post and include the mentioned article as pdf download. Thank you, Gordon!

Peter Lorange

Social Media: Where’s the Beef?

by Dr. Gordon Adler

Many companies are using social media. Some are leading the way:

Others throw money at it, but they haven’t figured out how to use it well. I’m  no exception. I can talk a good social media game, but truth be told, I’m not sure what works and what doesn’t.  So, what should we do?

I tried to answer this question in a short article I published in News & More, the GAA Alumni Network magazine:  Social Media: Big Buzz, Big Budgets, But Where’s the Beef?

Here are three things you need to do to get started:

  1. Learn the basics
  2. Align your social media strategy with your communication strategy
  3. Measure returns on your social investment

Seems to me you can’t be in it for short term gains. Social media is a long game. You’ve got to be committed and consistent.


** Gordon Adler is a communications expert who earned a Doctorate of Business Administration in Corporate Strategy Communication with distinction at the University of South Australia. He has been a Guest Lecturer at the Graduate Institute of Geneva, IMD and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) and was the director of the International School Bern for several years. He now shares the experience he gained as director of communications at IMD Lausanne and in other positions, through Adlerway, his own consulting company for strategic management and communications, and as a teacher at Lorange.

„Zurich Living Case“ mit der Schweizerischen Post

Die Schweizerische Post hat am Lorange Institute of Business einen “Zurich Living Case” gesponsert. Die teilnehmenden Studenten aus dem Executive Master Programm reichten ihre Reports am 21. Oktober 2011 ein.

Das Aufkommen von digitalen Technologien brachte verschiedene Branchen in Zugzwang, deren überlieferten Geschäftsmodelle zu überdenken. So auch die nationalen Postdienste. Dort führte die digitale Technologie zu einem Einbruch im umsatzträchtigen Briefverkehr (durch die Zunahme der e-mails). Zudem drängen spezialisierte Paketdienste in den Markt.


Die Schweizerische Post suchte nach einer Situationsanalyse und führte mit dem Lorange Institute of Business einen Zurich Living Case durch mit Teilnehmern verschiedener Executive Master Programmen. Zwei Gruppen präsentierten je einen halben Tag ihre Vorschläge, wie die Schweizerische Post diese Herausforderungen angehen könne, in Gegenwart von Dr. Dieter Bambauer, Leiter des Konzernbereichs PostLogistics, Thomas Egger, stellvertretender Finanzchef und Michel Franzelli (Konzernstrategie). Die Projektleitung beim Lorange Institute of Business lag in den Händen von Prof. Jamie Anderson.

Folgende 2 Punkte stachen aus der Beratung hervor:

1. Organisation
Wie soll die Schweizerische Post ihre E-Commerce-Aktivitäten organisieren? Sollen in die zahlreichen existierenden SBUS / Geschäftsaktivitäten integriert werden? Oder sollen diese auf eine separate Art und Weise organisiert werden, die über die SBUS hinausgehen? Mit welchen Vor- und Nachteilen?

2. E-Commerce Plattformen
Wie kann eine gut funktionierende, E-Commerce basierende Business Plattform aufgebaut werden, die Kundenbedürfnisse und nicht Produkte (Paketdienste, Briefversand) ins Zentrum der Aufmerksamkeit stellt? Wie kann man Sender und Empfänger zusammenbringen, zum Beispiel auch auf einer nicht verschlüsselten Plattform? Das heisst, es geht weniger um Pakete, als wie man dem Produkt eine neue, realisierbare Geschäftsbasis gibt.