Originally published in the April 2013 issue of HFN
For the last few years, HFN editorial has been operating on an unofficial, self-appointed rule to avoid the phrase “cautiously optimistic.” After the dust settled from the shock and awe of the recession, vendors and retailers would proclaim cautious optimism about nearly any situation. They were cautiously optimistic heading into trade shows. They were cautiously optimistic about new product categories; they were cautiously optimistic when predicting upcoming selling seasons. Sometimes the cautious optimism seemed merited. Other times, “cautiously optimistic” seemed to be bandied about as a positive spin on a negative situation.