M/A/R/C Research
Search the blog:

Archive for September, 2010

How Well Do You Control The Noise?

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Do you think I mean the music in your office?

The jackhammer outside?

The bus/train that goes by every 4 minutes?

Actually no to all of them.

When I say how well do you control the noise I mean how well do you plan and prioritize your day when you have:

  • Hundreds of incoming emails
     
  • Lots of internal meetings
     
  • Client requests
     
  • Update your status on Facebook
     
  • Calls from your friends
     
  • Another request from your boss
     
  • Bad news from your family

Everyone wants to have a productive day! Everyone wants to accomplish things during the course of the day. But do you?

  • More important – how do you do it?
     
  • How do you prioritize?
     
  • How do you plan your day?
     
  • What do you do to ensure the NOISE doesn’t overcome what you are trying to accomplish?

I look forward to hearing from you and hearing how you control the noise!

Are You Ready For Some Football? Join The Week 4 Merrill Dubrow Blog Football Pool

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Another amazing week! Yes I predicted the Atlanta Falcons knocking off the New Orleans Saints but didn’t predict the Rams, Seahawks or Chiefs victories and ended up with 10 wins going into the Monday night game. With one game to go Jennifer Acosta has the lead with 13 wins and will win if the Packers win tomorrow night. She is followed by Ben Smithee who has 12 wins and can tie Jennifer with a Bears victory. FYI we have added a few things for you to follow along and enjoy the fun (thanks Christopher). We have an updated leader board located on the right side of the main page of the blog that updates every 30 minutes during the games and within that page you can see the results from the prior weeks.

Here is a link to see the current scoreboard.

The third week we had 149 participants so the winner this week will receive $75. Remember the weekly winners will be given a spot in the grand prize pool which will be in week 17. That person will join Sarah Baird and last week’s winner 9th grader Jacob Adler for bragging rights for the next 6 months.

Here is a link for you to do this week’s picks.

Feel free to share the link and have friends, colleagues, relatives, kids and anyone else you want join the pool.

Good luck to all.

Oh No I Overslept… And Was Late For…

Friday, September 24th, 2010

A few weeks ago The PGA Tour announced that Jim Furyk – currently sitting in third position in the FedEx Cup standings and one of the best professional golfers in the world – was disqualified from The Barclays Tournament for missing his 7:30 pro-am tee time by five minutes. I’m not here to debate if the rule is a good one or should be changed but it got me to think about oversleeping and what I have or others may have missed because:

  • You forgot to set your alarm
     
  • A storm knocked out the power during the night and messed up your alarm
     
  • The hotel forgot to call you with your wakeup call
     
  • You forgot to set up a wakeup call
     
  • Your blackberry alarm was on vibrate instead of alarm

I could come up with a thousand more reasons as to why you didn’t wake up but the point is you didn’t. I usually take very early flights and I can recall missing a flight 15 years ago because the power went out and messed up my alarm clock. Wow — what a day. Rushed to the airport and almost made it!  But I didn’t! I was trying to attend an AMA Program Meeting in Nashville and as luck would have it the next flight wasn’t for 3 hours so it gave me plenty of time to think of my foolish mistake.

So what did you miss?

  • Doctor’s appointment?
     
  • Meeting with your boss?
     
  • Flight?
     
  • Job interview?
     
  • Date?
     
  • Something else?

I look forward to hearing your stories.

Hey Research Industry What Do You Think Of This Statement???

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

THE MOST IMPORTANT 5 YEARS IN THE HISTORY OF MARKET RESEARCH IS UPON US. I BELIEVE IF THE RESEARCH INDUSTRY DOESN’T GET ENTRENCHED AND EMBRACE NEW TECHNOLOGY, IT WILL CHANGE THE INDUSTRY IN A NEGATIVE WAY AND DRAMATICALLY IMPACT THE OVERALL REVENUE OF THE RESEARCH INDUSTRY FOREVER!

  • Do you agree with my statement?
     
  • How important do you think the next 5 years are for the research industry?
     
  • Do you believe the research industry is a slow moving industry to embrace NEW technology?
     
  • If you believe that? What can we do about it?

I really look forward to hearing from you and seeing what thoughts you have!

Are You Ready For Some Football? Join The Week 3 Merrill Dubrow Blog Football Pool

Monday, September 20th, 2010

Wow — what an exciting week and full of upsets. I never thought that the Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings would lose but a number of smart people in the pool picked both teams to lose! Congrads to Mike Cronin, Louise Kroot-Haukka, Ginger Blazier and John Sadler for being smart enough to predict those HUGE upsets!  Currently we have a 7 way tie for first place. If the 49ers win tonight the second week crown goes to John Sadler. If New Orleans wins it will come down to a tie breaker and Tom Hjelm, Mike Cronin, Jessica Cons, Jacob Adler, John Zarrillo or Lisa Smith will win.

Here is a link to see the current scoreboard.

The second week we had 138 participants so the winner this week will receive $75. And remember the weekly winners will be given a spot in the grand prize pool which will be in week 17 and will join week one winner Sarah Baird for an opportunity to win $400 and of course bragging rights for the next 6 months.

Here is a link for you to do this week’s picks.

Feel free to share the link and have friends, colleague, relatives, kids and anyone else you want join the pool.

Good luck to all.

Adding To Your Team – What Do You Look For?

Friday, September 17th, 2010

It seems like almost everyone these days is starting to hire again. Looking to add to their team. Obviously everyone wants to hire the right person.

What are you looking for? What experience do they need to have? How many years in the business do they need?

One of the important things for me is can I get a reference from someone I know and trust. That goes a very long way but since I can’t get that for everyone here are a few more important skills.

  • They need to be trainable! No matter how experienced they are they don’t know how to do it your company way.
     
  • Can they multi-task — there are certain questions you can ask and experiences that a person may have that can give a little insight to this.
     
  • They need to have solid computer skills — this is critical and non-negotiable
     
  • They need to be a great communicator. Clear, concise and to the point.

Things that also go a long way are:

  • Are they involved in the industry?
     
  • Are they involved in charities?

When you are adding a member to your team:

  • What are the “must haves”?
     
  • What skills do you look for?
     
  • What experience is important to you?

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

What Do You Look For In A Loyalty Program?

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

I am part of a number of loyalty programs. I gave myself 60 seconds to develop a list of all the ones I am part of (not including travel companies) and here is what I came up with:

  • Tom Thumb
     
  • Best Buy
     
  • Kroger Plus
     
  • Johnny B’s
     
  • Cavalli Pizza
     
  • Barnes & Noble
     
  • American Express

I am sure I missed a few for sure. For me to join a loyalty program it needs to be a few things:

  • Very easy to redeem points for a free item
     
  • Not a ton of rules or fine print
     
  • Easy to understand how many points I have accumulated
     
  • Not get a tremendous amount of emails or spam.

There are a few of my rules.

  • What do you look for in a loyalty program?
     
  • What makes you say yes when the cashier asks you to be part of their loyalty program?
     
  • What loyalty programs are you part of?
     
  • Which ones are the best?
     
  • Which ones don’t work?

I look forward to reading your comments.

Are You Ready For Some Football? Join The Week 2 Merrill Dubrow Blog Football Pool

Monday, September 13th, 2010

Well we are on our way with the football pool. Week one is almost in the record book and I have good news and great news!

The good news is I am leading the pack with 12 wins! The great news is I can’t win – okay, great for the other participants.

Speaking of the other participants we now have 7 people tied with 11 wins each and 25 people with 10 wins. We have 2 games tonight to determine our final winner or winners for the week. To see the current standings click here. These results will be updated tomorrow as well.

The first week we had 115 participants so the winner this week will receive $75. And remember the weekly winners will be given a spot in the grand prize pool which will be in week 17 and an opportunity to win $400 and of course bragging rights for the next 6 months.

Click here to participate in this week’s pool.

Feel free to share the link and have friends, colleague, relatives, kids and anyone else you want join the pool.

Good luck to all.

Time For A Fun Friday Quiz. How Well Do You Know Bruce… The Boss That Is? (** Contest Closed **)

Friday, September 10th, 2010

The contest is now closed. You can still take the survey to see how you fare, but there will be no prize. Click here to see the winners and view the correct answers.

I have heard from so many people that they are enjoying a quick Friday quiz that I thought it was time to include one of my favorite musical talents. Mr. Bruce Springsteen or as he is referred to as THE BOSS!

Yes everyone knows where he was born and his love for the Stone Pony in Asbury Park. But how much other information do you know about him and the band?

Well if you take this 12 question multiple choice quiz you will find out!

Good luck – like most of our challenges this quiz will be timed so speed is important as opposed to trying to search the web for the answers.

The contest will end in two weeks on September 24 at 5:00pm CDT. We will post the winners and I am SURE there will be a prize for the winning score/time.

Attention Parents – Home Alone? Fly Alone?

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

As my kids are getting a little older I am starting to think about at what age do they stay home alone and since their Aunts/Uncles and Grandparents live far away at what point do they fly alone?

I must admit that I can’t imagine right now having them fly alone — I would be very nervous and even though I would put them on a direct flight it could still get diverted and they could get stuck — ugh and then I think “I have a lot of friends and if he gets diverted I could call one of them and they would help me out” and then I think “what if they land in a small city where I don’t know anyone or they aren’t home and he gets stuck?” You get my point I am really nuts about this and over thinking it for sure.

Am I nuts or do you think about the same thing?

But I still come back to my initial questions which are:

  • What age do/did you allow your kids to stay home alone?
     
  • What age do/did you allow your kids to fly alone
     
  • Any best practices you could share with regard to having your kids fly alone would be really appreciated.

I look forward to reading your thoughts and comments.