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Monthly Survey Shows Sales, Net Profits and Employment to Improve

8/6/2003 --

ANN ARBOR, Mich.---Business executives expect sales, net profits and the number of customers to rise in August, according to the July 2003 Leadership Pulse, a new monthly survey conducted by the University of Michigan Business School and eePulse Inc.

Consisting of five, short questions, the Web-based Pulse Survey is designed to measure the effects of key resources and confidence levels on overall business growth and performance.

In the July Leadership Pulse, business executives worldwide were asked how they would rate the level of movement (from reduction to growth) over the next month for gross sales, number of employees, number of customers, net profits, and products and/or services.

The largest improvement over June's survey data is estimated to be in sales, with a five-point gain (gain and loss numbers are calculated using the change in percentage of people who indicated growth on the horizon in the next month).

Employment numbers also look more favorable, with the number of firms planning to reduce staff decreasing by three points since June, says eePulse CEO Theresa Welbourne, an adjunct associate professor at the Michigan Business School's Zell-Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies

Respondents also were asked about the most important action a leader can take to improve growth potential, with the most frequent responses centered around sales and customer service leading to sales (42 percent).

Other comments related to the following: people (30 percent), financial/internal (26 percent), culture (21 percent), product/technology (20 percent), strategy (16 percent); leadership/management (11 percent) and economy/economic conditions (5 percent).

"Next month, respondents will be asked to rate their confidence in leadership, their company¿s vision, ability to change, economic conditions and their people," Welbourne said. "During the months when this Confidence Scale is not asked, the research team provides drill-down questions that are designed to obtain more information about the prior month's findings. In addition to the metrics, open-ended comment data are collected and analyzed every month."

Individual leaders who would like to take part in the Leadership Pulse study can contact Welbourne or the research team at eePulse at (734) 996-2321. A Web site is available for those organizations that would like to participate in the study (participating companies with multiple executives will receive personalized company reports each month and can compare their results to those of the overall sample and various public sub-samples).

More information can be found at eePulse.com.

For more information, contact:
Bernie DeGroat
Phone: (734) 936-1015 or 647-1847
E-mail: bernied@umich.edu