Coronavirus – A Single Source of Truth


As best as I can tell, there is no single source of truth about the outbreak of COVID-19.

Information coming from the US government is mixed. The CDC has situational updates that are informational, but not particularly useful, and it unambiguously disclaims its risk assessment: “It’s important to note that current global circumstances suggest it is likely that this virus will cause a pandemic. In that case, the risk assessment would be different.”

The CDC’s medical advice is to wash your hands with soap and water, and to not go near people who are infected. One unexpected factoid is that hand sanitizers are most likely not strong enough to replace thorough hand washing as a preventative measure. (Carefully read the disclaimer on; it was obviously written by lawyers and marketers.)

The WHO has a global perspective and it is also interesting reading.

I’m not going to get into what the President tweeted yesterday; I don’t want to be accused of making this political. The brutal fact is that COVID-19 doesn’t care who you vote for or where you live.

I’ve been on the phone daily with our global clients for the past few weeks. To quote one global CEO, “This shit is getting real.” This is a global problem. Pretending that it isn’t will simply make it worse.

Since absolutely no one knows how this is going to play out, most of our clients are doing what they can to take preventative measures. Others are taking a wait-and-see approach. That said, my biggest clients are all dealing with extraordinary supply chain issues (not hyperbole, but rather the dictionary definition of extraordinary).

The consensus from across our landscape is that the COVID-19 outbreak is binary: either it will become a gigantic problem or it won’t. Since no one can predict the future, all we can do is respond to the threat. The question: how? I welcome your thoughts.


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Author’s note: This is not a sponsored post. I am the author of this article and it expresses my own opinions. I am not, nor is my company, receiving compensation for it.

About Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is a business advisor and technology consultant. He helps Fortune 500 companies with digital transformation, media and marketing. Named LinkedIn's Top Voice in Technology, he is the host of the Shelly Palmer #strategyhacker livestream and co-host of Techstream with Shelly Palmer & Seth Everett. He covers tech and business for Good Day New York, writes a weekly column for Adweek, is a regular commentator on CNN and CNBC, and writes a popular daily business blog. Follow @shellypalmer or visit



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