Raise your energy level to energize your business | Don't slash marketing without considering the costs | 3 ways to better understand your remote audience
August 13, 2020
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SmartBrief on Leadership
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Leading Edge
Managing individual and organizational energy levels can be made easier when you have a framework, such as a four-square quadrant for organizational states supplied by Joseph Harder of the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business. He offers questions and exercises for leaders to identify energy levels and start improving them.
Full Story: Darden Ideas to Action (University of Virginia) (8/11) 
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Create a daily list of your "most important tasks" by selecting to-dos or projects that support your larger goals or that you've been putting off, writes Naphtali Hoff. "Odds are that, the longer you've been thinking about something, your mind is telling you that it's important enough to make this list," he writes.
Full Story: SmartBrief/Leadership (8/12) 
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Strategic Management
Any reductions in marketing spend during difficult times should be considered on a case-by-case basis, with a focus on reducing areas with the worst return on investment, writes Nicholas Watkis, founder of Contract Marketing Service. "Consideration must be given to the relative importance of particular customer segments, product groups, and geographic areas, in producing income," he writes.
Full Story: CustomerThink (8/11) 
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Smarter Communication
Video-based meetings and presentations require extra care in body language, listening and how you engage with other participants, writes Judith Humphrey. "Show that you have not only heard what your audience has said, but that you feel what they feel," she writes.
Full Story: Fast Company online (8/12) 
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The Big Picture
Each Thursday, what's next for work and the economy
The coronavirus pandemic has changed consumer behaviors, with less spending on luxuries and dining out and more time spent on home-based activities, including streaming, writes Frank Trentmann of the Center for Consumer Society Research. "The notions that each person should have their own home, eat out, fly to Ibiza, exercise, take at least one hot shower a day, and change their clothes constantly -- these are not inborn human rights, and were indeed regarded as exceptional before they established themselves as normal," he writes.
Full Story: The New Republic (free registration) (8/10) 
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In Their Own Words
NYT CEO: Rethinking product maps helped us grow
Thompson (John Lamparski/Getty Images)
New York Times CEO Mark Thompson will retire next month after leading the company's successful digital subscription drive, and he credits structural and culture changes in product development. "We moved to a matrix structure where the team leaders -- often very young, late 20s, early 30s -- have power over the product and tech road maps and can make decisions based on what they learn from the testing-and-learning platforms, without regard to senior leadership," says Thompson.
Full Story: McKinsey (8/10) 
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Daily Diversion
The pandemic will serve tennis' tradition of quiet
(Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Tennis has long had an expectation that crowds will be quiet and orderly, dating back several hundred years to the emergence of court tennis, a peculiar sport popular with aristocrats and royalty such as England's Henry VIII, writes Dan Nosowitz. Crowd noise won't be a problem at this year's US Open, which will go on without spectators just as baseball, basketball and other sports have done.
Full Story: Atlas Obscura (8/11) 
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I don't ask for the meaning of the song of a bird or the rising of the sun on a misty morning. There they are, and they are beautiful.
Pete Hamill,
journalist, writer, editor
1935-2020
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