Have you read the book Who Moved my Cheese?

Four characters live in a maze. They become used to finding cheese in the same corner every time… but one day, it isn’t there. The two humans keep going back to the same spot, in the hope that the cheese will appear as usual. The two mice go scurrying around the maze in the hope of finding cheese in other places.

What this means to you

A friend of a friend is in the travel business – an industry which is obviously badly affected by the current pandemic. She is desperate for restrictions to be lifted so she can get back to work and earn some money.

I think her cheese has moved.

It’s not a good time to be in the travel business (unless your focus is staycations, and that’s going to be really competitive). No-one has a crystal ball, but I don’t imagine it will be a good time for at least a year or two.

The New York Times asked 511 epidemiologists and infectious disease specialists when they expect to resume 20 ‘normal’ activities. Here are some of their responses:

Vacation overnight within driving distance

  • 56% this summer
  • 26% 3-12 months
  • 18% 1 year or more
  • <1% never again

Travel by airplane

  • 20% this summer
  • 44% 3-12 months
  • 37% 1 year or more
  • <1% never again

Attend a sporting event, concert or play

  • 3% this summer
  • 32% 3-12 months
  • 64% 1 year or more
  • 1% never again


As stated in the article, “the virus sets the timeline’.

If I were in the travel business (or any other industry that’s similarly affected, such as hospitality or events), I’d be looking for cheese somewhere else.

For example, one of the sectors that’s been doing well (sadly) is the funeral business. Planning a funeral takes much of the same skillset as planning a holiday or business trip. You need to organise a venue, arrange transport, liaise with various providers, and communicate well with customers who might be under stress.

As for me, I’m happy to report that copywriting enquiries have picked up to normal levels this month – the cheese is in the same place it used to be.

Meanwhile, the speaking and training side of my business has switched to online – the cheese is round the corner so I haven’t had to look too far.

I’m a lucky mouse.

I hope you are too, or that you find plenty of cheese somewhere else.

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