Week Of July 22, 2019

“We all savor victories and suffer defeats.  But neither victories or

defeats should describe us; rather, we are defined by whether we have

the will to get up and claw our way back into the game.  This is the

true challenge, one seemingly without end, for life is our ‘long game.’”

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WEEK OF JULY 22, 2019

 

“To be ignorant of what happened before you

were born is to remain forever a child.”

Marcus Tullius Cicero, 106 BC- 43 BC

Roman Statesman, Orator and Philosopher

 

 

TODAY’S STUFF

  • A First Impression Business
  • “Face Time” Fallacy
  • Days of Disruption (No. 30): Charlie’s Big Break
  • The Continuing Miracle
  • Econ Recon: How Much or How Well?  Running Room

 

A FIRST IMPRESSION BUSINESS

It’s not right.  It’s not fair.  But we are often judged by others on the basis of very little real information about who we really are.  And truth be told, we often do the same to others.  Sadly, life is a first impression business, but we can influence how others judge us.

Harvard Business School professor Dr. Amy Cuddy has been studying first impressions for over 15 years, and her data suggests that when people meet us, they quickly draw two conclusions that will impact future relationships with them.  This brief article from Business Insider shares what they are, and her book, “Presence” offers a more detailed guide to succeeding in life’s first impression business.  These videos by Dr. Cuddy are also worth watching before that next important meeting.

 

“FACE TIME” FALLACY

Sales people often attribute lack of performance to not getting “face time” with the prospect.  This article from Sales Engineering challenges that claim and proposes that if sales people behaved differently before the face-to-face meeting, that meeting would be far more productive.  Find out why confusing causation with association, when it comes to face-to-face visits,: the obvious conclusion is often the wrong one!

 

DAYS OF DISRUPTION (No. 30): CHARLIE’S BIG BREAK

Charles Schwab & Company became one of the iconic companies of the past 40 years by pioneering discount brokerage.  This opportunity was made possible when the Securities and Exchange Commission deregulated brokerage commissions on May 1, 1975.  Before then, all brokerages charged the same price for stock trades.  These were fixed at a high level and favored the institutional investor versus the individual.  The change in the law made the opportunity for a discount brokerage possible, but Schwab knew that competing brokerages such as the giant Merrill Lynch could also get into the discount business.  As he relates in a one-page article, sometimes it’s what your competition does, or chooses not to do, that creates the killer opportunity you need.  Read about the day he knew his competition had opened the door to success for him.

 

THE CONTINUING MIRACLE

We just read an article that I wish I had seen in time to share in the July 4th edition of this newsletter, but it’s too good not to share even if it’s three weeks past the holiday.  Peggy Noonan’s WSJ column from the July 4th  weekend reminds us that, whatever ills this country has yet to address, it is intentionally constituted for constructive change, more so than any other country in the history of the world.  To wit: thousands are trying to get in, and those few wishing to leave find no impediment in doing so.

America is a work in progress that will never be finished and that is its beauty.  Ms. Noonan offers some reading suggestions for those that take their citizenship seriously.  Check out her column, “The Why, How and What of America.”

 

ECON RECON

How Much or How Well?  The recession of 2008 was accompanied (or caused) by a mortgage bubble, created by too much debt being taken on by too many with not enough income.  With the current expansion being the longest in recent history, many economists are looking at debt levels again as an indicator of the next downturn.   ITR Economics’ Alex Chausovsky looks at the major components of outstanding non-business debt, namely  consumer, mortgage, auto and student debt for clues about a possible recession.  In a short blog posting, he offers some interesting data on outstanding debt and suggest that the question to ask about debt isn’t “how much”, but “how well?”.

Running Room?   It is said that, “Trees don’t grow to the sky,” but  in the case of this remarkable bull stock market, economist Brian Wesbury feels the trees haven’t stopped growing.  Dr. Wesbury offers a one page analysis that explains to stock market watchers why he thinks this market still has a lot of running room.

 

Have a good week!