Catastrophes are highly desirable

Podcasting from Cork Ireland
Paul O’Mahony & Roger Overall
discuss disasters.

Recorded in Republic of Work, Cork City centre.

The podcast starts with Roger & Paul describing what happened the last time they recorded the podcast.

A disaster.

The episode was lost : the recording equipment failed.

That ‘catastrophe’ led to discussion about

“What should a company do when it has a major failure?”

All businesses have failures
– you have to pick yourself up (2:30)

What to do when you have a major disaster (a huge screw-up) – and you want to remain genuinely attractive?

BusinessJazz-S4E5-Cartoon-StarWars (2)

There’s evidence that when things go wrong – providing you recover well – you become even more attractive to customers. (3:20)

People think you’re human
We all fail.
But because of the way you recovered…

Your client is a human being as well.

You can easily imagine the worst.
However, the reaction may not be anger – may be one of understanding.

Roger’s story about his father’s mistake. How he learned from the experience. “What are we going to do about it?” – this is the big question. (6:45)

When this is the focus
(1) Employee doesn’t feel so horrible, they can continue to do their job
(2) No energy is wasted on feeling bad, shouting – all energy is directed to solving the problem.

There is slight reference to “A no – blame culture”. (8:00)

Roger’s big recommendation:

There are three questions that need to be asked when things go wrong

(1) Why did it happen?
(2) What have you learned from what went wrong?

(At Business Jazz – we had a faulty kit, we weren’t monitoring the audio, there was an intermittent fault. We weren’t monitoring the audio throughout the whole podcast.

(3) How do we move on? What’s our action plan?

(At Business Jazz, we had a ‘small’ problem – we moved on before we sorted the problem and that led to a much bigger problem.)

Paul asks:

What if the disaster is big and the cost of fixing it for ever is too high?
Should you be going out of business? (14:15 )

This led to discussion of
– Example of travel to Mars…
– Use of Disclaimers
– Insurance to cover failure to deliver.

Plus even more discussion of the experience Roger had with Air Canada & Aer Lingus – on his way to Vancouver, Canada.

The cost of guarantees

Aer Lingus wasn’t able to guarantee …

Big praise for Heathrow Airport website is excellent : tells you how to transfer. (19:00)

Big emphasis on the importance of really good clear information – presented in a friendly language.

Go to Heathrow.

Paul & Roger say they’ll put the Air Canada email up in shownotes.

Paul sent a tweet with a link to the last episode of Business Jazz to Air Canada – but there’s no guarantee the CEO got it.

Humourous chat about Air Canada.

Any other disasters? (24:50)

Exxon Valdez oil spill is discussed.

Elevator pitch: New TV program Roger would like to make.

Roger tells ” Do nothing – let the sea clean up”
Better than throwing chemicals over the oil. Adding to polution.

Oil is of nature – not synthetic.

“We’re not here to tell people how to clear up an oil slick”

How to communicate that to the public in a way that will persuade the public you’re being responsible:

1. Be seen to be doing something
2. Do what you can for wildlife
3. Educate people (For example: Why do you think we’re transporting oil?)

What caused the oil spill?
A meteorite fell to earth theory

If you have thoughts about oil spills, please get in touch

An experiment to try at home: Spill olive oil on water & clean it up.
Roger’s tip – use lemon juice

Contact us please at BusinessJazz.net.

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30 Reasons to reply quickly

Paul O’Mahony & Roger Overall [P&R]
– podcasting from Cork, Ireland –
talk about how to be genuinely attractive in business today (GAIBT).

Recorded in @RepublicofWork The Mall, Cork City centre.

The podcast recording was live streamed on Periscope.

P&R discuss:

(1) A serious approach to branding.
What is your brand? It’s what others expect from your business.
“This is what you are in the mind of others…”

P&R emphasise the importance & value of doing research to find out what your business is in the minds of others –
research may surprise you.

(2) What if a business can’t afford to do research about its brand?

(3) Roger tells a story about his plans to travel from Cork to Vancouver – via Aer Lingus & Air Canada.

Paul is shocked by Air Canada.

What happened:
Roger emailed both Aer Lingus & Air Canada to find out about his luggage. He expected a poor, slow response from Aer Lingus. He expected a top class response from Air Canada.

Brand Canada is strong, much stronger than Brand Aer Lingus – in Roger’s expectations.

The shocking thing
is that Air Canada sent an email :

“We will respond to you within 30 working days.”

You hear Paul cracking-up. Paul says it’s like someone calling a fire brigade and getting a reply – “thanks for your call, we’ll be with you within 30 working days.”

BusinessJazz-S4-E3-Cartoon (1)

P&R (Paul & Roger) decide :
“Let’s send this podcast to CEO of Air Canada Calin Rovinescu”

Next time Paul books to fly Air Canada he expects a reply “we expect to be able to collect you within 30 days of your booking date.”
Horrific story – almost unbelieveable.

(In case you’re wondering, Aer Lingus sent a reply that left Roger in some doubt – but at least it was an honest answer that sounded as if they couldn’t provide an absolute guarantee that nothing would go wrong.)
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Part Two:

Paul & Roger (P&R) chat about

(1) An understanding of what a brand is. Many miss the point that “I don’t have control over my brand.

(2) A book: “Markets are conversations” – the No 1 thesis in “The ClueTrain Manifesto” (1999).
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P&R summarise key points from their conversation:

  • You need to have a huge interest in the expectations people already have.
  • Strong Brands discourage some people from being interested in their products & services (saves people from wasting their time). An Undertaker doesn’t want to be confused with Pizza parlour.
  • It’s good to “Be Ignorant” about what other people think
  • Don’t base your understanding & decisions on
    (1) an unrepresentative sample
    (2) what you fear people are saying

Your company values:
Consider

  • You can control the extent to which you behave in line with your values.
  • Your values can’t be changed without changing the Board, the hiring policy, the people.
  • You may gradually need to ditch some of your clients – in order to move to working with your “ideal clients”.

Many companies have “values” – value statements. But statements are not what matter most – behaviour is what people base their expectations on.

Paul tells story about a company he once worked for whose No 1 value was FUN
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P&R summarise the Key Points from this week’s episode.

(Bitcoins get a brief mention)

EIR brand is an elephant or a tanker – slow to change. It’s in a market that’s high tech – fast – nimble. P&R say there’s a “phenomenal mismatch” between Eir’s brand and the market in which they aim to succeed.

“If your No 1 value is X – why do you do Y?
“If that’s your No 1 value – why are you doing that?

The ClueTrain Manifesto : “Markets are conversations” is highly recommended

Paul & Roger would like you to contact them via BusinessJazz.net

Our ABOUT US page

Important Note:
Big thanks to Jane Boyd in Vancouver for contacting us about our “About Us” Page: she pointed out that it’s out of date.

Sometimes you really do screw up – even when your heart is in the right space.

Please tell someone about Business Jazz Podcast.

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