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LA Chargers go through 3 logos in 24 hours #oops

(MARKETING NEWS) The LA Chargers apparently did not have critical friends look at their new ideas for a logo before they released it, or, if they did, their friends did them no favors.

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la chargers

Maybe sleep on it

It’s important to have critical friends in the workplace, those trusted individuals that you can float an idea to professionally and believe that they will give you honest and unsparing feedback about your ideas. Especially if you’re working on a very public idea, such as branding for your company, you’d want to have someone critique the designs privately, before unleashing them to the world, to give you time to adjust or start from scratch, if need be.

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The unveiled logo

The San Diego Chargers, a NFL team that decided to leave their San Diego home after 56 years due to ongoing stadium disputes, have decided to move to Los Angeles in time for the 2017-2018 season. Announcing the move last week via a letter to fans on its website, the team shortly thereafter released their new logo via Twitter. They apparently did not have critical friends look at their new ideas for a logo before they released it, or, if they did, their friends did them no favors.

Here’s their new idea for a logo!

LA Chargers

Reaction was swift and unmerciful, with not only the general public, but also professional sports teams weighing in on what was, at first glance, a derivative of two other logos already in existence.

The Frankenlogo

The left column is the current—and longstanding— logo of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the lightning bolt in the middle column is the logo of the National Hockey League’s Tampa Bay Lightning. The final column is the result of what appears to be a quick amalgamation between the two for the Chargers.

LA Chargers

Back to the drawing board

After being mocked incessantly, the Chargers PR team attempted to stave off the inevitable comparisons by changing their color scheme to the light blue and yellow that they’d employed over the years, only hours after they had released their first draft.

LA Chargers

But even this less-than-bold stroke did not stop the waves of criticism and mocking that came their way, with other professional sports teams and colleges joining in the derision. Franchises as diverse as the Dallas Stars and the Sacramento Kings poked fun at the seeming lack of originality, with Dallas-based Southern Methodist University joining in, too.

Fan service

The Chargers responded in an unusual fashion. Rather than taking to the Twitterverse to defend their choices, or just letting silence speak for itself, they took the bold step of releasing their third logo of the day in an apparent attempt to shut off the criticism.

LA Chargers

Yes, that’s more inspiring, isn’t it? At least the joke has moved from how bad their attempts at logo design were to the fact that they responded to criticism by flinging anything they could off the drawing board in an attempt to stop the criticisms. Recap: One unpopular decision to move the franchise and three logo releases in the same day, one after the other in response to appropriate criticism in the face of uninspired design.

What have we learned, class?

The takeaway for us all is that we need to embrace the role of the internal critic in our decision making. Many times, corporate decisions are expected to be made and implemented without a healthy dose of internal discussion and reality checks.

By making certain that everyone has the authority to make suggestions that will be taken seriously, you’ve gone a long way towards strengthening and freeing the culture of your company. While mistakes and missteps will still happen—even the best companies can still have really bad ideas from time to time—the more an idea is fleshed out and sees the light with input from diverse voices, the less likelihood there is that they will.

#Frankenlogo

Roger is a Staff Writer at The American Genius and holds two Master's degrees, one in Education Leadership and another in Leadership Studies. In his spare time away from researching leadership retention and communication styles, he loves to watch baseball, especially the Red Sox!

Business Marketing

Google Chrome will no longer allow premium extensions

(MARKETING) In banning extension payments through their own platform, Google addresses a compelling, if self-created, issue on Chrome.

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Google Chrome open on a laptop on a organized desk.

Google has cracked down on various practices over the past couple of years, but their most recent target—the Google Chrome extensions store—has a few folks scratching their heads.
Over the span of the next few months, Google will phase out paid extensions completely, thus ending a bizarre and relatively negligible corner of internet economy.

This decision comes on the heels of a “temporary” ban on the publication of new premium extensions back in March. According to Engadget, all aspects of paid extension use—including free trials and in-app purchases—will be gone come February 2021.

To be clear, Google’s decision won’t prohibit extension developers from charging customers to use their products; instead, extension developers will be required to find alternative methods of requesting payment. We’ve seen this model work on a donation basis with extensions like AdBlock. But shifting to something similar on a comprehensive scale will be something else entirely.

Interestingly, Google’s angle appears to be in increasing user safety. The Verge reports that their initial suspension of paid extensions was put into place as a response to products that included “fraudulent transactions”, and Google’s subsequent responses since then have comprised more user-facing actions such as removing extensions published by different parties that accomplish replica tasks.

Review manipulation, use of hefty notifications as a part of an extension’s operation, and generally spammy techniques were also eyeballed by Google as problem points in their ongoing suspension leading up to the ban.

In banning extension payments through their own platform, Google addresses a compelling, if self-created, issue. The extension store was a relatively free market in a sense—something that, given the number of parameters being enforced as of now, is less true for the time being.

Similarly, one can only wonder about which avenues vendors will choose when seeking payment for their services in the future. It’s entirely possible that, after Google Chrome shuts down payments in February, the paid section of the extension market will crumble into oblivion, the side effects of which we can’t necessarily picture.

For now, it’s probably best to hold off on buying any premium extensions; after all, there’s at least a fighting chance that they’ll all be free come February—if we make it that far.

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Business Marketing

Bite-sized retail: Macy’s plans to move out of malls

(BUSINESS MARKETING) While Macy’s shares have recently climbed, the department store chain is making a change in regards to big retail shopping malls.

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Macy's retail storefront, which may look different as they scale to smaller stores.

I was recently listening to a podcast on Barstool Sports, and was surprised to hear that their presenting sponsor was Macy’s. This struck me as odd considering the demographic for the show is women in their twenties to thirties, and Macy’s typically doesn’t cater to that crowd. Furthermore, department retail stores are becoming a bit antiquated as is.

The sponsorship made more sense once I learned that Macy’s is restructuring their operation, and now allowing their brand to go the way of the ghost. They feel that while malls will remain in operation, only the best (AKA the malls with the most foot traffic) will stand the test of changes in the shopping experience.

As we’ve seen a gigantic rise this year in online shopping, stores like Macy’s and JC Penney are working hard to keep themselves afloat. There is so much changing in brick and mortar retail that major shifts need to be made.

So, what is Macy’s proposing to do?

The upscale department store chain is going to be testing smaller stores in locations outside of major shopping malls. Bloomingdale’s stores will be doing the same. “We continue to believe that the best malls in the country will thrive,” CEO Jeff Gennette told CNBC analysts. “However, we also know that Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s have high potential [off]-mall and in smaller formats.”

While the pandemic assuredly plays a role in this, the need for change came even before the hit in March. Macy’s had announced in February their plans to close 125 stores in the next three years. This is in conjunction with Macy’s expansion of Macy’s Backstage, which offers more affordable options.

Gennette also stated that while those original plans are still in place, Macy’s has been closely monitoring the competition in the event that they need to adjust the store closure timeline. At the end of the second quarter, Macy’s had 771 stores, including Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury.

Last week, Macy’s shares climbed 3 percent, after the retailer reported a more narrow loss than originally expected, along with stronger sales due to an uptick in their online business. So they’re already doing well in that regard. But will smaller stores be the change they need to survive?

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Business Marketing

Why you must nix MLM experience from your resume

(BUSINESS MARKETING) MLMs prey on people without much choice, but once you try to switch to something more stable, don’t use the MLM as experience.

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Discussing including MLM experience on a resume.

MLM experience… Is it worth keeping on your resume?

Are you or someone you know looking for a job after a stint in an MLM? Well, first off, congratulations for pursuing a real job that will provide a steady salary! But I also know that transition can be hard. The job market is already tight and if you don’t have much other work experience on your resume, is it worth trying to leverage your MLM experience?

The short answer? Heck no.

As Ask the Manager puts it, there’s a “strong stigma against [MLMs],” meaning your work experience might very well put a bad taste in the mouth of anyone looking through resumes. And looking past the sketchy products many offer, when nearly half of people in MLMs lose money and another quarter barely break even, it sure doesn’t paint you in a good light to be involved.

(Not to mention, many who do turn a profit only do so by recruiting more people, not actually by selling many products.)

“But I wouldn’t say I worked for an MLM,” you or your friend might say, “I was a small business owner!”

It’s a common selling point for MLMs, that often throw around pseudo-feminist feel good slang like “Boss Babe” or a “Momtrepreneur,” to tell women joining that they’re now business women! Except, as you might have guessed, that’s not actually the case, unless by “Boss Babe” you mean “Babe Who Goes Bankrupt or Tries to Bankrupt Her Friends.”

A more accurate title for the job you did at an MLM would be Sales Rep, because you have no stake in the creation of the product, or setting the prices, or any of the myriad of tasks that a real entrepreneur has to face.

Okay, that doesn’t sound nearly as impressive as “small business owner.” And I know it’s tempting to talk up your experience on a resume, but that can fall apart pretty quickly if you can’t actually speak to actual entrepreneur experience. It makes you look like you don’t know what you’re talking about…which is also not a good look for the job hunt.

That said… Depending on your situation, it might be difficult to leave any potential work experience off your resume. I get it. MLMs often target people who don’t have options for other work opportunities – and it’s possible you’re one of the unlucky ones who doesn’t have much else to put on paper.

In this case, you’ll want to do it carefully. Use the sales representative title (or something similar) and, if you’re like the roughly 50% of people who lose money from MLMs, highlight your soft skills. Did you do cold calls? Tailor events to the people who would be attending? Get creative, just make sure to do it within reason.

It’s not ideal to use your MLM experience on a resume, but sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures. Still, congratulations to you, or anyone you know, who has decided to pursue something that will actually help pay the bills.

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