As you read the following, as well as the many other sources of reading, listening and watching, I encourage you to start to set aside the facts. This means when we are reading or listening to information being presented, that we probably will only need to gleam 5-10% from the source. We then put the facts together like a puzzle to see what the information is telling us. All while knowing that there will be things that come out of left field. The goal is to better mitigate when these X factors hit, e.g. coronavirus.
Bankruptcies – we should not be surprised that the Coronavirus has caused a number of companies to file for Chapter 11, some earlier than expected.
- JC Penney – CNBC
- Neiman Marcus – CNN
- Gold’s Gym – Forbes
- CMX Cinema – WSJ
- Hertz Auto Rentals – NPR
- Lucky’s Market (Grocery Stores) – SN
- Earth Fare (Organic Grocery Stores) – Bloomberg
- Frontier Communications – US News
- Intelsat – CFO
This is not a complete list, but it tells us this is not only in retail but in areas that have been thriving during the COVID-19. Sure, we would all expect to see many retail store chains to be in this list, but I am not so sure why we are seeing Grocery Stores. Maybe they couldn’t compete with larger chains on delivery of their goods or couldn’t adapt to meet other changes to customer needs. Then to me the biggest surprise is the telecommunications companies. Yikes! With the demand of employees needing remote access to work from homes, something is really wrong.
Ultimately, it is all about how financially sound each company was doing before the impact of the coronavirus. And then again, some might see this as a way to put creditors off earlier rather than later to get really cheap money from the government. Just saying, it has been done before and could be used in this manner today. It does prove that each company was already on shaky ground even though our economy was strong.
The Companies Increasing in Size – the talk last year and previous years was some businesses have become too big! They have become monopolies and we need to split them up. As I stated in a previous Trend blog, the trends of what is going on all around, will not let this happen because of how it will affect ours as well as the global economy. Even now with the coronavirus we are seeing more ground taken by these Big companies and we really can’t and shouldn’t consider stopping these things or we could possibly be in even bigger trouble. We are where we are, and this is a factor that should be considered when watching and looking for trends.
A couple of worthy articles are:
- Coronavirus Finishes the Retail Reckoning that Amazon Started – WSJ
- Amazon, Google Help States as Coronavirus Boosts Unemployment Claims – WSJ
Then you have the mergers and purchases of other companies:
- Facebook to buy Giphy for $400 Million – Axios
- Uber in Talks to Acquire Grubhub – NY Times
- Raytheon Technologies Defends Merger Rationale – WSJ
Positive Feedback – I did read a great article recently of a company that found a trend that was affecting their business and what steps they took to improve their business success. The company is Frito-Lay, a subsidiary of PepsiCo.
During the Coronavirus, they built its new direct-to-consumer website Snacks.com in just 30 days. It is a great article yet, as stated above, what are the real truths or needed takeaways within what was presented.
- They had thought of this idea in the past but had given it a low priority for a number of reasons. (Many companies do not move forward, because of someone giving the idea a low priority or for many other reasons.)
- They use Agile Teams concepts. These are cross-functional teams that have key people from different departments that are given a task to execute. (As a FYI, there are outside the box ways of creating the Agile Team concept, yet would take another blog to discuss.)
- Frito-Lay was willing to take a bigger risk than in the past. (This sounds more like an entrepreneurial spirit. Let’s be real, it is easy to slide into the area of not wanting to rock the boat for hundreds of reasons. I can also say, those companies that seem to take more risk as well as sports teams, have the greatest success.)
- New projects do not have to be fully tested – that could take years to accomplish. (In reality, all the needs can’t be included into a project until people start to use what is built and feedback is provided.)
If we are truly honest with ourselves, companies like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and others have been using this approach or similar approach for years for getting new services or products to the market faster than anyone else.
I encourage each of you to look for facts, put the facts together, then find ways to quickly implement new ideas. I know each of you want to change the world and we can by taking different steps than we have in the past.
My name is Larry Treas and I am CEO and Head of New Thinking at Dagger. I have 35 years of witnessing the madness that blows through companies around the world, and it’s a foul breeze. I created the Dagger Guild to forge peer discussions, mentoring sessions, and specific information pipeline deliverables to address, solve and alleviate the standard issue nothingness you go through daily. Dagger has no allegiance, no affiliation, and no ties to carriers, vendors, advertisers or telecom marketers of any kind. As a result, our advice is both untethered and unbiased.
You can see from my CV/resume my track record and years of experience. The Dagger Guild is my dream built upon the belief that together, we will create the next generation of heroes.