Corporate Contractors - Summer 2020 Newsletter

How COVID-19 Will Change Consumer Behavior The coronavirus crisis is likely to change American culture and behavior long after it’s passed. Ad Age points out these trends that are likely to endure: • Trust in tried-and-true brands. The stress of change will coax consumers into sticking with time-tested brands, experts say. Launching anything new will be difficult as Americans shy away from what they’re not already familiar with. • Do-it-yourself will stay strong. We’re already cooking more at home and trying out new recipes, and that’s likely to continue. For example, sales of yeast rose 650% for the week ending March 21, compared with the same period last year, reflecting how many Americans are baking more often. • We’ll rely more on digital outlets. Just as digital streaming is replacing going out to the movies, digital shopping is on the upswing. For example, almost 40% of online grocery shoppers in April made their first online grocery purchase in March. • Flexible work is here to stay. A poll of 500 adults age 40–50 said they expect to go back to their previous routines, including work, school, recreation, and entertainment. However, as working from home has boomed during the pandemic, it’s likely that more employers will offer this option and employees will scoop it up, experts predict. Ghost Ship Mystery Solved Every 20 years or so, the remains of a 50-foot shipwreck are exposed on a Maine beach in the wake of strong storms, only to be buried again by more harsh weather. It’s a mystery that has frustrated locals wanting to know more about the ghost ship. According to the CNN website, the ship was first spotted in 1958, then reappeared in 1978, 2007, 2013, and 2018. Some pieces of the ship were saved, and now the mystery has been cleared up. A marine archeologist sent pieces of the wreck to the Cornell University Tree-Ring Laboratory. There, the timber was matched in a tree-ring index to a probable date of 1753. With that data, the archeologist studied historical records and linked it to a sloop called Defiance, built in 1754 and wrecked near the Maine location in 1769. Defiance sailed out of Salem, Massachusetts, with a cargo of flour, pork, and other goods. Crewed by four men, Defiance hit a fierce storm and was forced onto the beach. Although the sloop was a total loss, all four men survived. The identification is significant because Defiance is one of the few examples of a pre-Revolutionary War ship built in New England. Scientists also hope to use the information to measure the impact of sea level rise and storm activity. Unlock Innovation With These Tactics Want to boost your creativity? It can enhance your career and your life. The Forbes website offers these techniques for jumpstarting your brain: • Say yes. Don’t shut down ideas too quickly. Even if they seem unrealistic or impractical, take a positive approach by saying, “Yes, and _____.” Ask follow- up questions to spur a deeper exploration of the issues. You may discover a way to bring a seemingly impossible idea to life. • Brainstorm on a large scale. It’s easy to limit your thinking, especially when resources are scarce. Don’t fall into that trap. Expand on your idea without worrying about how much it will cost or how much work it will take. It’s always possible to scale it down later, but in the long run you’ll generate more impressive plans and strategies. • Look for the pain points. Find out what’s bothering your partners or customers. Chances are you can come up with interesting ideas fors lving their most pressing problems. To cite one well-known example, an entrepreneur created Netflix, which initially shipped DVDs to homes for as long as customers wanted to keep them, because he realized people didn’t like late fees. Removing that one pain point led to a mammoth business. A Few One-Liners • What’s the best thing about Switzerland? I don’t know, but the flag is a huge plus. • I submitted 10 puns to a joke-writing competition to see if any of them made the finals. Sadly, no pun in ten did. • What’s the difference between a hippo and a Zippo? One is really heavy, and the other is a little lighter. • If you ever get cold, stand in the corner of a room. They’re usually 90 degrees. • I took part in the suntanning Olympics, but I only got bronze. • What do Alexander the Great and Winnie-the-Pooh have in common? Same middle name. • Murphy’s Law says that anything that can go wrong will go wrong. Cole’s Law is thinly sliced cabbage. SPEED BUMP Dave Coverly