The supply chain has never been under this much stress. Shelves are full, bare, then full again. Sometimes, it’s the toilet paper aisle. Sometimes, it’s the flour, or the bread, or the eggs. What’s going on?

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Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

The Psychology of Hoarding

There’s a natural, very human, response to uncertainty. When people are faced with a high amount of uncertainty, they attempt to guard against uncertainty by clinging to comfort items.

Stuck at home? What’s the one thing that you’d miss the most if you ran out of it? …


The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has us all nervous, worried, and scared (pick one or all three.) As a small business owner, I’m trying hard to keep my head down, eyes on the keyboard, caring for my clients’ needs while pushing the news and social media at a respectable distance. Is it social distancing when you distance yourself from social media?

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Photo by Hello I'm Nik 🎞 on Unsplash

I don’t know, but I do know that if I don’t take care of my mental health and focus on what I can control in my business, I’ll be a nervous wreck. …


Several weeks ago, in a fit of “I really need to fix my cash flow issues,” I signed up for a freelance writing platform I’ll call “CV”

CV is akin to the old content mills but with a difference: instead of gathering assignments and parsing them out or assigning keyword-driven content to writers, the writers’ resumes and profiles are included on the site, and those companies seeking content peruse the profiles looking for their perfect fit.

Think of it like Match.com but for writers and companies seeking content.

CV provides highly qualified writers and I’ve enjoyed working with them from the client-side of the transaction. At the agency where I worked as a VP, I used to find great writers for client projects through their system. …


They bring you opportunities for innovation, not personal criticsm.

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Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

The Cranky One. You know who it is. It’s the person at work who always finds the problems. They’re better than a bloodhound at detecting a scent only they smell t-r-o-u-b-l-e and love to bring it to the boss’ attention.

They’re like the kid at school, the one who whined, “Teacher, Joey just pinched Susie!” even though Susie didn’t care one bit if Joey pinched her or not.

If you’re the manager of the Cranky One, do you roll your eyes, sigh loudly, or smirk? Do you gloss over their comments and complaints? …


The absurdity of asking freelance writers for free samples.

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Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

“No one has ever objected to providing a free writing sample before.”

Really? Then I have a bridge to sell you in Brooklyn…

Seriously, this was from a mid-sized marketing agency that I was pitching for freelance writing work. I have over 20 years of experience as a freelance writer; I’ve managed groups within marketing agencies. I’ve been on both the agency and the client side. I have credentials upon credentials and an enormous clips file.

It still wasn’t good enough for them.

I offered to complete a paid writing test but I refused to provide them with custom client-facing content at no charge. …


In November 2019, a news story from California barely made a blip in the national headlines. The state is being sued a second time for enacting a law that would require corporate boards to include women. By 2020, public boards must include at least one woman. By 2021, any publicly traded companies with five board members must include two women on the board; companies with six or more must include three women.

Interestingly enough, the group suing California is doing so on the grounds that the law goes against the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Why? Because it takes into account gender and assumes that people of different genders are interchangeable in the role of board member. …


We all know the dangers of sharing the wrong thing on social media. Right? RIGHT?

I mean, in this day and age when anyone and everyone shares, copies, pastes, screenshots, doctors up photos and videos…why would we take that risk?

Yet in the last 24 hours, I have seen:

  • An up-and-coming business owner in our local community, someone trusted with confidential information about many businesses she serves, posting pictures from her “tequila shot” night. The pictures were shared on Instagram and Facebook and weren’t flattering.
  • A freelancer bitching and moaning about a client’s never ending change requests on a project.
  • A company “reminding” people they don’t give returns except within a six-hour window of an online purchase and scolding people who commented on their draconian policies. …


Yes, they really did.

It’s called the Forester Ultimate Customized Kit Special, or F.U.C.K.S. for short, and it was unveiled to great fanfare at the 2020 Singapore Auto Show.

Was it an accident? Or a very clever marketing ploy?

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Photo by Jose Martinez on Unsplash

The Subaru Snafu Is in Good Company

Of course, the auto industry has seen its share of bizarre names for cars. Mazda came up with the Titan Dump and Nissan had the Homy Super Long. Most of these names can be attributed to marketers who forgot to check translations in the target markets to avoid such hilarity.

Not so with the Forester Ultimate Customized Kit Special.

In an apology sent to dealerships around the world, Subaru claimed an overly zealous dealership in Singapore came up with the appellation. Although they blamed the unnamed dealership, they didn’t rush to take the signs down at the auto show, where the number of smartphone flashes indicate the potential for some serious Instagram-worthy moments. …


If your dog (or horse) does something that drives you crazy, it’s because you taught him — by example, by omission, by ignoring it — that it’s okay. So don’t call him stupid because he won’t do something else. Don’t blame the animal for something you taught him.

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Photo by Sheri Hooley on Unsplash

In my late teens and early twenties, I worked at my college’s horse stable to pay for my riding lessons and half-lease on one of their school horses.

There, I met a little palomino quarter horse in the barn named Little Pyg. Big Pyg had long crossed the Rainbow Bridge — Pygmalion was his name, and he too was a palomino, with identical markings to little Pyg down to his white blaze and white socks. …


The rural road on which I live is an old road. By some estimates, it dates back to the 18th century when it was a coach route between Richmond and Lynchburg.

In those days, I imagine, men hunted with musket and powder. Bringing down a deer or a bear meant food for the family, fur to keep warm.

The old road winds through woodland, rolling fields dotted with black Angus and white-faced Hereford cattle, and the tobacco barn standing as a silent reminder of Virginia’s past.

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Walking Zeke along the country road (Photo by Jeanne Grunert).

I love walking this route at dawn with my German shepherd, Zeke. This morning’s sunrise painted the sky sherbet hues. I paused on the roadside to admire the colorful displays in the sky as Zeke sniffed a particularly odiferous tuft of grass. …

About

Jeanne Grunert

Experienced freelance content marketing writer. Marketing maven. German shepherd mama. Find me at jeannegrunert.com or my business, sevenoaksconsulting.com

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