The Blind Squirrel Problem

My dad likes to say, "Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn now and then."

The thing is, acorns are getting a lot better at hiding.

I was in the local family-owned stationery store yesterday. A young man, perhaps 18, walked in and said to the foreign-born owner, who was busy behind the counter, "You don’t have any summer jobs, do you?" It was clear that he had never been to the store before, and from his dress (ripped shorts, sandals) that he wasn’t too serious, either.

You can probably guess the answer. The seeker thanked him and walked out, headed across the street to more rejection at the drug store.

This squirrel can stumble all he wants, but he’s unlikely to find a job, never mind a good one.

Even a summer job is 400 or more hours of work. I wonder why he didn’t bother to invest three hours in advance, looking for a job worth doing?

Actually, marketers do precisely the same thing all the time. Until it’s imminent, an emergency, it’s not high enough on the priority list. Which means that the effort (when we finally decide to allocate the time) is greater and the results are worse.