US companies are divided on the impact a US withdrawal from the Universal Postal Union could mean for business, though e-commerce firms such as Amazon and shippers UPS and FedEx could benefit from eliminating the subsidies. The White House said it will exit the union if highly subsidized foreign rate regulations aren't removed.
About 42% of US retailers surveyed reported a rise in serial returners over the past year, and around three-fifths said they would ban frequent returners from shopping on their sites, according to a survey from Brightpearl. Earlier this year, Amazon said it was considering banning shoppers who made too many returns.
Hurricane Florence caused an estimated $38 billion worth of damage across the Southern US when it made landfall a month ago, and supply chains are slowly getting back on track. Because the hurricane made landfall and remained in the region longer than normal, infrastructure damage and destruction from flooding was more significant, requiring drivers to find new routes to make deliveries.
JD.com's consumers can now send packages across China using its mobile app. The e-commerce company's logistics network and supply chain management technology allows for same-day, two-day and high-value shipping options.
Life, career and executive coaches take different paths, but each helps people examine themselves in a more objective way, writes David Mark. "Research has shown that most of us don't see ourselves very clearly and that it matters: accurate self-awareness in leaders is highly correlated with organizational effectiveness and profitability," he writes.
Universal Forest Products posted a 14.8% year-over-year increase in sales to $1.21 billion in its third quarter. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization rose 9% from the year-ago period.
A new fiscal year or a product launch could be the right time to switch third-party logistics providers, writes Jeff Jones of Saddle Creek Logistics Services. "It is important to have clearly defined processes in place to uphold customer service levels, maintain speed to market and control costs," he writes.
Soft skills such as leadership know-how and the ability to communicate clearly will always be in demand, even in a digital era, writes Lindsay Konzak, president of 3 Aspens Media. "Complement your product and hard skills training with the interpersonal skills your team and the industry as a whole needs to remain relevant and competitive long into the future," Konzak writes.
Dane Manufacturing more than tripled consolidated annual sales in three years by pursuing strategic mergers and acquisitions using specific criteria. The linchpin was Dane's June acquisition of Dantherm Cooling, a deal that required months of effort to secure financing.
Product-development teams must have access to enough funds to take risks and get creative, write Mike Gordon, Marek Kowski and Sander Smits. Traditional metrics are important to measure, they add, but so are customer loyalty and team morale.