A+ Design

Coffee Cup

Most people would not pay attention to a simple coffee cup and even more so one from McDonald’s.

What makes the McCafe cup different is its design. It’s study, double-wall construction makes the cup fit firmly in the hand….and eliminates the need of a separate cup sleeve. The firmness of the cup also makes it less likely for the sides to compress when held….and spill hot coffee.

McDonald’s coffee may not be up to Starbuck standards….however the McCafe cup gets an A+ for design and functionality.



Market Shift

On Line Buying

Two recent stories:

Buying a mattress is much different now than in the past….there are many more options.

A good retailer should provide those options….and describe important features and benefits. In the selling process, at some point a decision needs to be made. If the customer is given the correct information….than that decision should not be so difficult.

The bottom line is the credibility and trust of the seller….if that has been gained, than the customer can make the right decision.

News Round Up

January 2018

+ Where are they now from January 2013 – 

+ Checkout lanes obsolete:   www.businessinsider.com/kroger-customers-check-out-without-registers-or-cashiers-2017-12

+ Eliminate plastic grocery bags:   https://www.ocregister.com/2017/11/28/got-plastic-bag-anxiety-this-grocery-bag-system-promises-to-take-it-all-away/

+ To my mind, 9 of 10 companies underinvest in training. PERIOD. – Tom Peters

+ Kindness, in one word, is a business model, an approach to strangers and a platform for growth. It might take more effort than you were hoping it would, but it’s worth it. – Seth Godin

+ Southwest Airlines competitive advantage:   https://flipboard.com/@flipboard/-why-southwest-airlines-competitive-adva/f-cf8e00edec%2Fwashingtonpost.com

+ BBB complaints in NC: http://www.wral.com/ten-nc-businesses-account-for-37-percent-of-better-business-bureau-complaints/17284021/

+ Appropriate us for an iconic building:   http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2018/01/kl_outdoor_reveals_stunning_he.html


Wine Glass

Halo Vino

From jsonline:  https://www.jsonline.com/story/money/business/2018/01/17/shes-investment-banker-turned-sommelier-turned-entrepreneur-who-makes-shatterproof-stackable-stemles/1020220001/

A better wine glass? Yes, at least a reusable plastic container.

Not earth shattering….a plastic wineglass….just better. The key reason for a better plastic wine glass….it solves a problem and enhances the flavor of the wine….the wine tastes better.

Not only a good idea….but a value product at less than $1 per glass.




Legacy Manufacturing

The NY Times had a recent pictorial on making pencils. Not a high-tech product by any means….however a complex manufacturing process.

Whether making pencils or specialized metal components….manufacturing is a vital part of our economy. There is still a need for quality pencils!



Business Basic

The CEO of Chevron gave this advice:


Mr. Watson stated this: “The sooner you learn about reading people, listening to others and building relationships, the sooner you will be more effective. So I would have spent a little more time on the people side, a little more time on the relationship side, early in my career.”

While it is easy to get fixated on a product/service/data….at the end of the day….it’s people that create a successful business. And even more importantly is the customer interaction. 

Our business success was 80% dependent on the customer….initially reading our customer….listening….and finally developing a relationship so that they wanted to buy from us.


Management Problem

American Airlines

American Airlines has introduced the Boeing 737 Max into its fleet….apparently to maximize revenue by installing more seats and tiny lavatories.

From: http://viewfromthewing.boardingarea.com/2018/01/13/americans-problem-management-touch-customers/

Certainly American Airlines and Boeing can be criticized for poor design (and adding aerators to the tiny sink faucet doesn’t solve the larger problem).

The fundamental issue is that when the CEO was asked if he was ever on the MAX. His response:

Doug Parker: “I have not been on the MAX.”

Being out of touch with your product….service….customer is simply poor management and even greater….a lack of leadership.