Sunday, September 13, 2009

Investing in Your People

As reported by Barry Meier in The New York Times, a set of internal marketing documents disclosed in the Fall of 2009 shows that the company Medtronic, a producer of medical devices, definitely had its own best interests in mind. The document showed revenue projections calculating how much the company could get back by paying for training fellowships for doctors. The answer? Up to 200%.

Although the direct-fund training program has since come under ethical scrutiny, it shows that, in terms of your bottom line, you can build a stronger business by investing in your people.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Our Environment's Unacknowledged Influence

We all let social cues from the people we eat with inform our own portion size. A recent study at the University of British Columbia, however, shows that even the body type of the other person eating has an effect on our choices. Study participants were asked to serve themselves some M&Ms before settling down to watch a video. A researcher posing as another participant took M&Ms first; though the amount taken by this confederate was always the same, the confederate was sometimes a size zero and sometimes a size sixteen. The results:

  • 2.05 ounces of candy were taken by subjects when the nearby eater was obese.
  • 2.62 ounces of candy were taken by subjects when the nearby eater was thin.

Build a stronger business by being aware of your environment.