Forget the Grinch stealing Christmas. This year, it is a cute little penguin called Monty that not only steals the show, but also the hearts and minds of the UK populace (and softies everywhere). British department store John Lewis has done it again, with a £1 million commercial (US$ 1.5m) that tells the story of a boy and his penguin pal, on the search for a flippered mate.
New technologies are also blurring the line between the online and brick and mortar shopping experiences. Shoppable windows are giving online retailers a physical "brick and mortar like" user experience while using digital technology to streamline the purchasing process and to speed up product deliveries.
Today as I start my new role as the chief executive of Barnardo's, the charity's purpose remains to transform the lives of the UK's most vulnerable children. Our vision is to realise Thomas Barnardo's dream of a world where no child is turned away from the help that they need.
You may have seen the heartbreaking sixty-second story: an old man takes his lovely little fluffy white dog for a walk to deliver a bunch of flowers. It transpires he is delivering the flowers to the graveside of lost loved one. The dog comforts him with a lick and they eat dinner together, with the man preparing the dog's favourite meal, Cesar.