During flu season it’s good to remember that we’re social animals. Our social standing directly impacts our well-being; inequality and health are linked.
The relationship between status and health showed up clearly in the Whitehall studies in the U.K. The first study tracked the health of men in the British civil service over a ten-year period. It found a strong, inverse relationship between rank in the hierarchy and death rates from coronary disease. Executives atop of the civil service enjoyed much better health than the menial workers at the bottom.
In the United States, discussion of delivery drones usually follows stories such as this New York Times piece about Amazon testing drone delivery of packages. Drone delivery also offers hope to public and social sector organizations as well.
Distribution is a pillar of marketing, but distribution differs in fundamental ways between the for-profit and the public and social sectors. In the case of vaccine distribution, millions of lives can hang in the balance.
Sidewalks are infrastructure and infrastructure is a reflection of our social nature. Sidewalks are, or can be, important public spaces. They might, or could, be the public space with which we’re most familiar. Sidewalks build community and promote the healthy lifestyle and walkable neighborhoods that many people say they want.
Consider what happens on sidewalks: chalk drawings, tricycle rides, dog walks, hopscotch, jump rope, lemonade stands, neighborhood conversations, holding hands.
Lucky Iron Fish is a certified B Corp working to improve health around the world, starting in Cambodia. They’ve made a short video, with the help of Google, to tell their organization’s origin story. The video is a great two-minute organizational narrative example that uses the five parts of Joseph Campbell’s mythological story form to tell an compelling story:
Marketers often benchmark their goods and services against the competition. For countries, the main benchmark for nearly a century has been Gross Domestic Product, or GDP. The United States rules in GDP. While increasing GDP does correlate with some improvement in social conditions, it is purely an economic measure. As the measure of a country, a society, it’s narrow and incomplete. The Social Progress Index goes beyond gross domestic product to measure what makes a country great for its citizens: meeting basic needs, providing for wellbeing, and offering opportunity.
In business school, we poured over case studies about how companies solved, or didn’t solve, a particular challenge. So here’s a challenge for you: how would you use existing products, distribution channels and means of promotion in health marketing to improve nutrition in one of the largest and richest countries in the world?
I need to replace a toilet in my house. I don’t like spending money on toilets. To me, toilets are like vacuum cleaners and car tires–things that I didn’t grow up looking forward to investing in with my adult money.
The Harvard Study of Adult Development is a very long longitudinal study. For 75 years, the study has gathered data on two cohorts: 268 men who were sophomores at Harvard in 1938, and 456 boys who lived in low-income neighborhoods in Boston at the same time. A main focus of the study is alcohol abuse and alcoholism, but with so much data over such a long period of time, plenty of other findings await. One major finding relates to what makes people happy in the long run.
One popular post on this blog covers the villains, victims and heroes in organizational storytelling. This triad of characters has driven stories for thousands of years. Starting in the 1800s with authors such as Edgar Allen Poe and Wilkie Collins, writers focused on the theme of crime using a specialized triad of characters: criminal, victim, and sleuth. You can use these roles in your organizational storytelling.