The Chicago design and communications firm Segura created my all-time favorite agency contract. Here it is: This is even better than my “consulting contract without bullshit.” It sets expectations, which is the key to a good relationship. Heard through David Stengle and BoingBoing.
Uber has repeatedly screwed up. Its CEO, President, CMO, and CFO are gone. Now Uber cofounder and chairman Garrett Camp says things are going to get better. Sorry, Garrett, but hoping is not a viable plan. Peter Drucker said “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” At Uber, both are broken. The win-at-all-costs culture has generated a … Continued
The Public Theater had a cool idea: stage Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in modern dress, with Caesar played by a Donald Trump impersonator. (Perhaps you recall that the play includes a bloody assassination.) Now Delta Air Lines and Bank of America have pulled their sponsorships, but their statements dance around their real justifications. While liberals are calling … Continued
Paul Romer ran research for the World Bank. He took aim the bank’s impenetrable writing style, known as “Bankspeak,” asking for shorter, more pointed reports. That cost him his management position. I’ll explain what he was right about, why it didn’t work, and what it really takes to fix a writing culture like this. Romer’s objections … Continued
Due to an IT systems failure, British Airways cancelled hundreds of flights from Heathrow and Gatwick airports this weekend. The company’s statements were clear, straightforward, and sympathetic — a notable contrast to the overblown, self-serving apologies that seem typical for airline screwups. As the gateway to Europe, Heathrow is one of the busiest airports in … Continued
PR people, if you have something unpleasant to say, just say it. Hiding it behind euphemisms doesn’t fool anyone. Today’s case study: Ford’s plan to lay off 10% of its staff, which it calls a “people efficiency action.” According to a Wall Street Journal article, Ford will cut 10% of its global workforce to boost profits, with … Continued
Adam Jones, center fielder for the Baltimore Orioles, said fans at Fenway Park threw peanuts at him and shouted the n-word. The Red Sox — and many other prominent Boston figures — have not only apologized, but taken action. Take note: if your organization gets in trouble, this is a case study in how to respond properly. To … Continued
Two-and-a-half weeks after dragging a passenger off a flight like a rag doll, United Airlines has released a statement about changes to its procedures and emailed all its frequent flyers. Everything they did wrong in the original statements, they’ve now done right. And the two sets of statements give me a unique opportunity to contrast effective … Continued