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

  1. Smartphones in the workplace…and the bedroom.  It’s no secret that way too many people have become addicted to their smartphones both at work and in their personal lives. Like any other addiction, it’s dangerous. It’s a distraction, it’s dishonouring to the people around us and, now it’s official, it reduces our effectiveness.
    According to research by the Universities of Würzburg and Nottingham Trent, people are 26% less productive when working at their desks, with the distraction of their smartphone sitting next to them.
    We’ve all seen couples on a date where both of them are glued to their smartphones. It’s so dishonouring. Whatever happened to being engaged, respectful and ‘present’ with each other? I’ll go one step further. I think smartphones should be banned from the bedroom, unless you’re an ER doctor ‘on call’. Anybody with me on this?
  2. Who or what is not performing in your business? Italian Banks hold Europe’s largest portfolio of non-performing loans. This amounts to €185 billion Euros (almost US$215 billion). Non-performing loans are defined as commercial loans on which no payment has been made for 90 days or consumer loans on which no payment has been made for 180 days.
    This could be the result of a lot of misrepresentation on the part of the borrowers or bad judgment and lack of discipline on the part of the lenders…but in any case, it’s a disaster for the economy. So who or what is not performing in your business and what are you doing to measure performance and deal with non-performance?
  3. How many words do you use? The latest edition of the Oxford Dictionary says there are 171,476 words in use in the English language but a vocabulary of just 3,000 words (1.8%) of these will cover 95% of the words anyone ever needs to use.
  4. Canada’s most respected brands. In the Reputation Institute’s survey of the most respected brands in Canada, the top 5 are Google, Lego, Rolex, Nintendo and MEC (Mountain Equipment Co-op). Tim Horton’s, Canada’s iconic coffee and QSR chain has fallen from #13 last year to number 67 in 2018. Plagued with lawsuits by franchisees and a terribly mismanaged response to the new minimum wage legislation in parts of Canada, the now Brazilian-owned chain has acted ‘un-Canadian…and it has hurt them badly.
    So what are your brand values and brand reputation? Are you in tune which you’re your target customers and aligned with their values? If not, what needs fixing or more effectively communicating?
  5. Fun Dry-Cleaning Facts:
    – According to a recent survey, Russians are the biggest contributors to the global dry-cleaning economy, spending a total of US $3.3 billion per year on dry cleaning suits. The USA is #2.
    – Oslo, Norway is the most expensive place in the world to get a suit dry cleaned $52.00 US. This represents 2.3 hours of work at their minimum wage.
    – Toronto, Canada, where I live, the cost to dry clean a suit is $16.87 US, which represents 1.4 hours of work at the local minimum wage.
    – Jakarta, Indonesia is the least expensive place to dry clean a suit at $2.20 US, but this also represents 1.4 hours of work at their minimum wage.
    Note: The problem with the logic of this survey is that people in minimum wage jobs typically don’t wear suits to work, so the use of the minimum wage metric is unrealistic.
    – As office dress codes become more casual, the dry-cleaning business struggles. In another recent study, 43% of British office workers surveyed believe the business suit no longer has a place in the office. Another example of societal changes affecting entire industries.

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