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Vivian Reading

Vivian Reading

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Two marketing scouts are sent by a shoe factory to Africa. One scout sees the lack of shoes and believes the situation is hopeless, while the other sees it as a business opportunity. The story illustrates how our perspective shapes our perception of a situation. It's all invented. A shoe factory sends two marketing scouts to a region of Africa to study the prospects of expanding business. One sends back a telegram saying, situation hopeless, stop, no one wears shoes. The other writes back triumphantly, glorious business opportunities, stop, they have no shoes. To the marketing expert who sees no shoes, all the evidence points to hopelessness. To his colleague, the same conditions point to abundance and possibility.

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