Month: February 2009

24 Feb 2009

Never Imply Permission

During the course of my work, I happen upon some very upsetting trends and events that do nothing but damage someone’s credibility, trust and personal brand. In addition, if those events people are participating in are under the umbrella of their employer, it is damaging that company’s brand as well.

Several months ago, my marketing assistant quit unexpectedly and I needed to get someone in to fill that position immediately. Our Accounting Manager uses a recruiting company on a regular basis and suggested I contact them. Since this was my first time using a placement service, I was a little skeptical that they could fill my need with a person of the correct skill set. After was all said and done, I had a competent, resourceful and pleasant assistant jumping right into the thick of things and doing a satisfactory job.

What happened after this is what upsets me.

To use this service, an Account Manager from the placement company visited me asking relevant questions about the position and what my requirements were. Now, that isn’t the issue I have with the process. That comes with the territory. What I do have an issue with is the inundation of spam emails I now receive from the Account Manager.

During the course of the meetings, I gave her my business card which has my email address on it. However, this does not imply I would now like to receive emails from her outlining potential candidates with accounting, finance and legal expertise. I work in the Marketing Dept! Why would I need to know about applicants outside of my discipline? The short answer is: I do not.

She assumed that it is ok to start sending me emails without asking me if she could. During the course of our conversations, she was told that I do not have a large or even moderate need for her staffing services. In spite of that, I start receiving spam. Let’s face it. That is what it is. It is unsolicited and it is boilerplate.

She has damaged her credibility and trust with me. In fact, I am not sure if I do have a need in the future if she will be the one I call. If she had generated some content that I would be of interest or benefit to me and was providing it to me to make my life easier, it would have boosted her brand with me.

The old school sales tactics are not going to get people the same results anymore. In fact, they are going to start hurting them more than ever.

Continue Reading
13 Feb 2009

Gratuitous Self Promotion

This post doesn’t have any topic that may help in the business world or even you personal life. It is completely self serving to myself and my business partner.

The new website is where we are attempting to collect real accounts of people’s crushes they have had over the years. We hear about them in social situations at the pub or dinner parties and they are a huge topic of conversation.
We think people want to hear these stories, so was created. We encourage anyone and everyone to share with us the romantic experiences that have shaped their lives. Please keep it classy and do not get into sexual specifics. That is not what we want to hear(well maybe some of us).

We hope this can help people share their experiences and/or release a burden. We also think we all want to hear real stories from real people.


Continue Reading
05 Feb 2009

Phelps has fallen? No surprise here…

So America’s golden boy, Michael Phelps, has fallen from the good graces of the public. I am not surprised. The man is 23 years old and for all his life has been living under the scrutiny of public life. Not to mention the scrutiny of an American athlete. No wonder he wants to blow off some steam. The problem: he got caught.

Although he has made a mistake and it cost him dearly, he is handling this with professionalism and surprising maturity. Either he is very smart or his publicist is on top of things. I am guessing the latter.  His personal brand has been tarnished. This is an enormous issue since the majority of his income is based on his brand. Sponsorship deals are making him a multi-millionaire. How should you handle a mistake? Exactly how Phelps handled it. He immediately admitted his mistake and apologized for it.
We should all follow this example, not only in our personal lives, but in our professional lives as well. When your product or service has failed someone’s expectations, admit that you did wrong. No one person/company/product/service is perfect and the ball will be dropped sooner or later. What matters is how you handle the situation when it does. Be honest. Ask for forgiveness. And make moves to ensure the issue doesn’t happen again. People are surprisingly forgiving when you address problems like that. They are less forgiving when they know you are lying or pointing fingers somewhere else.

So, it comes down to this: Phelps’ lucrative sponsorship deals are in jeopardy. Rosetta Stone has not renewed his contract, but it had expired prior to the release of the picture. Omega and Speedo have stuck by him. A few other sponsors have dropped him, but that is going to happen.

Phelps will be ok. America will forgive him and he will be pulling in more gold metals in 2012. Let’s just hope he doesn’t test positive for steroids. Then it would get serious. See: A-Rod

Continue Reading