(Time to read this Blog section is about 50 seconds)

  1. Robotic coffee comes to Shanghai.  There’s a new ‘robotic coffee shop’ in Shanghai, China where an infinite number of custom coffee combos are created by a robot at the rate of 100 per hour.  This robotic barista is consistent and reliable…and never takes a coffee break.
    So, how will automation, robots and Artificial Intelligence change your business in the next five years?  Will you be a technology leader, a nimble follower, or a stubborn resister who quietly disappears?     
  1. More evidence that you need to be a darn good employer. Even the best employers can’t find enough staff.  According to Fortune Magazine, the top 100 ‘best businesses to work for in America’ currently have 187,000 unfilled positions. If the best companies to work for have that many openings, what chance do you have of finding the people you need?
    The real battle in business today is the battle for talent.  What will you do to create the compensation, benefits, business environment and culture that attracts, inspires and engages the people you need?      
  1. Getting creative about ‘scrap’. The Kingsford Charcoal Company, that has 80% of the charcoal briquette market in North America, was started by Henry Ford in the early 1900s to recycle scrap wood from their wheel production for Model T Fords.  Those wheels had wooden spokes, just like old-fashioned wagon wheels, and rather than waste the scrap wood, Henry created Kingsford charcoal.
    So, Henry Ford was one of the first business people to recycle scrap. How can you reduce, reuse recycle more effectively in your business?  Ask your Team to come up with 5 ideas in the next three weeks…and then meet to hear those ideas.  
  1. Not so sunny in the California. If have a minimum wage job in San Francisco, you’d have to work 177 hours a week to afford an average one-bedroom rental apartment.  That’s 25.3 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Do the math.
  2. ‘Big Maintenance’.   During March Break week we took grandson Gus skiing at Holliday Valley in New York State.  To encourage and welcome Canadian visitors, every business at the resort exchanged Canadian dollars at a $1.20 rate, even though the official bank rate was about $1.34. WOW!  Meanwhile, a restaurant in a tourist town in Ontario was taking US dollars at par and keeping the 34 cent ‘bonus’ for themselves. They explained that, “It’s their policy.”  Shame on them.  

Do you have any misguided policies in your business that tick off customers and need fixing?  Who will look into this and by when?

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