“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.” Stephen King
Some thirty years back, a certain youth came first in a nationally conducted examination. While lauding him for his success, most said behind his back, “That was expected. His father was equally talented in his time. The boy was born with an encyclopedia in his brain.” Though it was not a disparaging comment by any means, it did the lad great injustice. What the world did not know was that there was method in his success. At the tender age of five, this boy would come first or a close second to another boy who was one full year older. This lad used to struggle with his books, till his parents decided, against faculty advice, to make him repeat one year. From then on, he never looked back. Yet, he followed a strict regimen. Up at six, bathed and fed by half past six, he would study for an hour till the school bus arrived at half past seven, with School Assembly at eight.
In the olden days, the only sources of home electronic entertainment were the Radio and the Gramophone. We used to have a weekly half-hour radio program that dealt with in-house mundane problems mailed to the host of that program by faceless people unable to reach a solution, asking for advice. My friend's widowed mother would make it a point to listen to that weekly program without fail. I still remember one question: How does one get rid of the yellow stains left on clothes by a commonly used spice, Turmeric, without physically damaging the stained garment? Those days, people used to bash the dirt out of all wash with heavy batons, like exorcists excising demons. Actually, there were two questions in one−Getting rid of that stain and not damaging clothing. The host confessed that he had no single solution and requested public assistance, to be mailed on a postcard (costing less than one US cent). Next week, the host began his program with that very question. Thanking his audience profusely for responding, he stated that he had been buried under the deluge of postcards mailed to him and finally, divulged the most commonly utilized solution sent in by thousands of listeners from all over the country.
An economist must be “mathematician, historian, statesman, philosopher, in some degree……as aloof and incorruptible as an artist, yet sometimes as near the earth as a politician.”
John Maynard Keynes
What is Price?
This seems a rather inane question, as we have grown up in a world where everything that we required for subsistence was bought for a price. However, micro and macroeconomists have spent a lifetime trying to nail down a suitable answer for this simple question. Out of the millions of answers on the net, The Business Dictionary defines Price as ‘Market value, or agreed exchange value that will purchase a definite quantity, weight, or other measure of a good or service.’ Knowthis.com takes it further: “In general terms price is a component of an exchange or transaction that takes place between two parties and refers to what must be given up by one party (i.e., buyer) in order to obtain something offered by another party (i.e., seller).” This view provides a somewhat limited explanation of what price means to participants in the transaction. In fact, price means different things to different participants in an exchange:
Word of Mouth Marketing sounds like a misnomer, because the connotation of volume generated by the term ‘Marketing’ is missing. While there does seem to be a connection between the two terms, I like to think of Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM) as a behind-the-scenes unpaid form of promotion where one happy customer tells another about how content he is with a specific product or service and that it is I who provided him that bit of happiness. There is no obvious marketing and the advertising is self- generated, emanating from the goodwill created by my product or service. The ensuing cascade is like a pyramid sale, multiplying manifold as it goes down the corridor of communication between friends, acquaintances, neighbors or relatives.
A diagram will make it more obvious:
Justus Daniel Eapen is a policy level Organizational Transformation Consultant with over 25 years experience in Banking & Government.