Week of March 20, 2017

“Thank God every day when you get up that you have something
to do that day which must be done whether you like it or not.
Being forced to work and forced to do your best will breed in you
a hundred virtues which the idle will never know.”

James Russell Lowell
American Poet

Crimes Against Pizza

Quality isn’t everything. Case in point: Domino’s Pizza. Founder Tom Monaghan discovered that the key to success in the pizza business wasn’t great pizza, but free delivery. But no competitive advantage lasts forever and the company’s subpar pizza began to deliver subpar results, no matter how fast it’s delivered, especially after several accidents, one fatal, forced the company to abandon its signature 30 minute delivery guarantee.

Here’s a short case study from Bloomberg Business summarizing the rise, fall and rise of Domino’s and how it atoned for its “crimes against pizza and re-built a nine billion dollar empire” after losing half its market share.

X,Y and Now Z…

Before long there will be four generations in the work force. The Baby Boomers have had to adapt to the members of Gen X (1965 to 1984) and then Gen Y (“the Millennials” born between 1984 and 1994). Just when the Boomers felt they were beginning to have the Xer’s and Millennials figured out comes another generation: Generation Z born between 1994 and 2010. The first college graduating class of Gen Z is entering the workforce. This summary article from CNBC will give you some insights on the next wave of workers taking over your office.

The Useless Class

The Useless Class : A few weeks ago, I shared an article on how “AI is going to change the 80/20 rule. “ Here’s a follow up article on the same topic with a much darker prediction on how AI will displace not just many, but most of us, from the jobs we currently hold.
In his book “Sapiens” “Historian Yuval Noah Harari makes a bracing prediction: just as mass industrialization created the working class, the AI revolution will create a new unworking class.” This has implications not just for you, but for the educational and working choices your children make. Take a few minutes for a summary of Mr. Harari’s views on the rise of ‘the useless class.’

Good Advice: From Stanford

Got six minutes for some good advice? Six distinguished alumni and professors offer in six minutes the best advice they ever got. Worth your time and that of the young people in your life for the lessons and tools shared.

Econ Recon:

A Dovish Hike: The Fed finally raised interest rates. Was it enough? Economist Brian Wesbury thinks it’s a little lite. Find out why he thinks it’s a Dovish hike.

Unintended Consequences: We all want to be safe and secure borders are part of that. Much needs to be done in this area, but how we accomplish that goal can have some unintended consequences. ITR Economics Senior Analyst Alex Chausovsky reports from Texas how attempts to secure the border are severely impacting the construction business and possible the larger economy