(Time to read this Blog section is about 90 seconds)

  1. Reality Check: Do your customers get what they pay for?   You’ve probably heard the old expression, “You get what you pay for.”   Well, it’s often not true.  In the latest edition of Consumer Report Magazine, the #1 rated sunscreen, with a score of 100, is La Roche-Posay at $7.20 per ounce.  The #2 rated product, with a score of 99, is Walmart’s Equate Sport sunscreen at just 63¢ per ounce.  Virtually the same protection for less than 10% of the cost.
    The most expensive sunscreen on the list was Shiseido’s Ultimate Sun Protection at $12.12 per ounce and, with a score of just 61, it was rated #20 out of the 28 products tested. That’s almost 20 times more expensive than the Walmart product…and about 40% less effective.
    So, what’s the clear ‘value commitment’ in your business?  Do you over-promise and under-deliver in any way?  Does your pricing leave you vulnerable to more efficient or more honest disruptors? 
  2. ‘God says I need a new private jet’.  American ‘prosperity’ televangelist Jesse Duplantis (estimated net worth $40 million) recently told his congregation that God spoke to him and told him he needs a new $54 million private jet.  That will be Jesse’s 4th private jet.  The sad thing is that lots of people, many of them poor, fall for this stuff and send money.
  3. What are you doing for ‘fun’ this summer? On June 5th, 51 year old French long-distance swimmer, Ben Lecomte, started his swim across the Pacific Ocean from Japan to San Francisco.  The distance is 5,500 miles and is expected to take 6 to 8 months to complete.  He will swim eight hours each day before joining his crew on a boat to eat and sleep.  This is not Ben’s ‘1st rodeo’.  Thirty years ago he swam across the Atlantic Ocean.
    The purpose of this mighty adventure is to draw attention to the growing pollution of our vast oceans …especially in what is known as the ‘Great Pacific Garbage Patch’, an area three times the size of France, where plastic and debris have accumulated.
    This adventure is certainly extreme…but what will you do this summer that’s different, challenging and exhilarating?  What will you do that will make a difference?  Or will you just stick to the same old comfortable stuff that you’ve always done?    
  1. Why restaurants love ‘groups’. Research shows that a party of six will typically eat and drink 67% more than the same six people dining alone.
  2. While we struggle to get pipelines built in Canada, Russia’s vast size and huge petroleum industry requires, and gets, an abundance of pipelines. Put together, Russia’s pipelines are 259,913 kilometers long. The planet Earth itself is just 40,075 kilometers in circumference at the equator.  This means that Russia’s pipelines are long enough to wrap around the earth six times.
  3. What changing consumer preferences and values are affecting your business? Walmart is now the largest seller of groceries in America.  Coke sales are down 20% in the past two years.  Cushiony, lightweight Sketchers are the new ‘go to’ footwear for millions of older folks with bad knees and hips.  Cremation is now 65% of the end-of-life disposition in North America, which means that the $4,000 casket is now replaced by a $300 urn.
    Is your industry being shaken up by changing consumer preferences and values?  How much time do you spend thinking about what’s happening in your market and industry and what it will take to be a profitable market leader in 3 to 5 years?  What skills, talent, technology, systems and investment will be required?  And what are you doing about it?         

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