Global Marketplaces and Heroes...8-10-97

Next month, I'll be traveling to Indonesia to present at an annual conference for a major client. Some of this past week's events demonstrate to all of us that the marketplace is indeed global. Microsoft's infusion of $150 million into Apple computer not only invested in Apple's future, but bought Bill Gates a few million guaranteed Internet Explorer and Microsoft Office programs. Apple, and their "miracle man" Steve Jobs, wound up with a strong showing on Wall Street. Good news for Apple developers, licensees and users.

The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday ordered settlement rates that it hopes will "significantly reduce" the cost of international long distance telephone service. The FCC predicted that the average price of an international call will drop almost 80%, from 88 cents today to 20 cents five years from now. Good news for consumers.

An Internet investment service, E-Trade, added a new feature this Thursday: electronic transfer of funds from checking accounts to E-Trade investment accounts. VirtualPay lets customers electronically withdraw money from any account with check-writing capabilities and transfer the money within 2 days. Good news as the encryption system prevents theft and fraud. TWA is offering a host of perks, working to enlarge the first-class cabin areas by 50 to 100 percent on most of the aircraft in its fleet. Through December 31st, full-fare coach class ticket holders are welcome to stop by the Ambassadors Club, TWA's exclusive airport lounge. Good news for travelers who want more leg room, work space, and better meals.

Marriott Hotels is offering a Two-For-Breakfast promotion at many of its hotels nationwide. The special rate includes breakfast for two guests, which can be enjoyed in the hotel restaurant or brought to your room, available through August 31st. Good news for travelers or for those who want an enjoyable get-a-way.

United Parcel Service and its striking Teamsters union failed to end the week-long walkout against the largest US package delivery company. The issues that are at play here are the nature of part-time work, stability for the company, and pension protection for everyone. Bad news for companies who rely on the great service of UPS, and for the families of the striking workers.

In other parts of the world, India celebrates its 50th anniversary of independence from Britain. With much yet to do, India has reason to feel pride. It is the most populous democracy in the world with 600 million voters who differ in language, ethnicity, religion, caste and politics. In Singapore, the announcement was made that Hewlett-Packard's Asia Pacific Distribution Organization will use the Manugistics solution to gain better visibility into product demand and manage product distribution to help ensure that the right products are available at the right time, at the right place, at the lowest cost. The benefit: as HP APDO's Operations Manager said, "this will streamline our business processes, increase operational efficiency, and improve our performance."

In the Mideast, Dennis Ross has the delicate and difficult task of trying to salvage the battered peace process as he shuttles between Israeli and Palestinian leaders. With trust at an all-time low, Ross, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and King Hussein of Jordan will try to restore security and renew the tenuous spirit of cooperation. The benefit to the whole world: peace in our lifetime.

In the sports arena, Greg Maddux, in addition to his four Cy Young Awards has become baseball's highest-paid player. His five-year contract with the Atlanta Braves will pay him $57.5 million. Maddux said the negotiations turned serious the past week, but were quickly resolved. ''A number was given, and reached, and that was it. No bickering.'' The benefit to baseball lovers. And the Dallas Cowboys are again in the news. Coach Barry Switzer was heckled by New England Patriots fans after having been arrested for trying to bring a loaded gun through airport security. Charged with a misdemeanor, Switzer was also fined $75,000. by owner Jerry Jones. The benefit goes to the charity Jerry will donate the money to.

Meantime, gentleman Pete Sampras, playing his first tournament since winning Wimbledon last month, defeated Austrian Thomas Muster to capture the ATP Championship. The 49th career title for the top-seeded American, this ties Sampras with Boris Becker for the most tournament victories among active players on the ATP Tour. The benefit goes to nice guys (and gals) everywhere. Well, that's just some of an ever-changing world that impacts all of us. Find anything to emulate?

MarleneB.Brown,CEO:MarmeL Consulting Firm,POBox 83,ClarkMills,NY 13321 Speaker/Consultant Tel: 315/853-1318 Fax: 315/853-4636 Email: marlenebb7 Topics: Future Change& Technology, Leadership&Teamwork, Sales&Marketing Author: the book "TechnoTouch:Managing Change for 21st Century Leadership"© & "TechnoTouch Marketing Trends"© a bi-monthly newsletter. Visit our Web site at:

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