JPTearsheet September, 2020 Vol. XII No. 9
"Instead of focusing on the competition, focus on the customer." 
–  Scott Cook

Dealing With It
No, this is not just another Covid piece. But it is some thoughts on how companies are recognizing the impacts the pandemic is having, not just on their businesses, but also on those of their customers.

A recent LinkedIn-Edelman collaborative survey revealed how some executives are viewing today’s business world including how the pandemic is “changing how businesses operate, set strategic priorities and forecast performance… and what this means for strategic decision-making.”

The good news is that a large majority (74 percent) reject inaction. But while they are “looking for unexpected opportunities,” they also are prepared for longer sales cycles with customers acting more slowly to evaluate and decide on purchases. Some also explain that brand trust has become more important than ever before.

Many companies are shifting their marketing efforts from less lead generation to more customer relationship management. As such, a slight majority of companies (55 percent) are focusing on existing offerings, as opposed to creating and marketing new offers (45 percent).

Other companies are taking advantage of the current situation to reposition themselves for the long term.

One notable shift is that business leaders are increasing communication with their customers. These companies are committing more resources to provide consultative knowledge designed to help customers succeed during the current turbulence. Reports indicate that many sales teams are increasingly asking their marketing cohorts to help them deal with customer engagement barriers by creatively finding new ways to open doors.

It would appear that perhaps Tom Peters was right 40 years ago when he advised businesses to stay close to your customers. He may have been thinking of times like these.
Over the top, down under. Customs officials in Australia destroyed an alligator skin handbag valued at $18,900 because the owner failed to purchase a $50 importation permit. 
—  UPI

More from down under. An Australian man was caught on surveillance cameras completely naked taking a shower at a drive-through carwash.
—  Toronto Sun

Till death do you part. A couple in Ecuador has been married for 79 years. He, age 110, and she, age 104, are the world’s oldest combined couple at more than 214 years.

Just give us the tools… A brass-trimmed, wooden box filled vampire-slaying tools including 19th-century bible, crucifixes and a pistol is being auctioned. Estimated price: $2,500–$3,700.

Or, every three hours. Google makes 3,200 algorithm changes per year – an average of more than eight algorithm changes per day. 

Brain gain. Your brain churns through more information in 30 seconds than the Hubble Space Telescope has processed in thirty years.
—  Washington Post

Bon appetit. Improved modern nutrition, some suggest, is why puberty, which began at 16 or 17 five centuries ago, now generally begins at 11.
—  Cambridge University

A lot of guac. Largely due to guacamole, avocado sales are highest near Super Bowl sunday and Cinco de Mayo.

Quote of the Month:
“The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It's as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.” 
–  Nolan Bushnell

Month of the Month:
Raise your hand if you’re not here, because September is Attendance Awareness Month. Here or not, you had better get ready, this is also National Preparedness Month. Still troubled? We feel your pain during this, Pain Awareness Month.

Question of the Month:

What significant, historical event happened in England on September 5, 1752?

Nothing gets by the Tearsheet.
Some of the many trillions of living things that call your body home were studied in North Carolina State University's Belly Button Biodiversity Project. The researchers swabbed the belly buttons of “153 participants” – randomly selected Americans – and found 2,368 species of bacteria – 1,458 of which were previously unknown to science.

According to one of the researchers, “We investigated factors like age, sex, ethnicity, innie vs outie, and frequency of washing – yet none of the factors explained differences in the number and kinds of bacteria we found in a particular person.”

“I would change policy, bring back natural grass and nickel beer. Baseball is the belly-button of our society. Straighten out baseball, and you straighten out the rest of the world.”
–  Bill Lee
Hard Hitting Lessons
A gridiron MBA? OK, maybe that’s not possible, but see how much you can learn about business from football in my book, Hard Hitting Lessons. The subtitle says it all, “Some not-so-obvious business lessons learned from playing football.”
Most people associate football with learning things like hard work, discipline, teamwork, etc. That’s all very true. But what can you learn about business from football? According to Hard Hitting Lessons, a lot. This book will explain it all – from human resources to strategic planning and more. Yes, there’s a lot to be learned from playing football about business – and even about life itself. 

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