If we ever needed examples of how important communication is within the business world, we need look no further than last week. So then, what business lessons can we learn from pasties, petrol and falling asleep?
Don’t pretend to be something you’re not. No one believes that during lunchtime at Eton, young David Cameron would produce a sausage roll from his lunch box. After all, we learnt today that David’s favourite pasty shop just happened to have closed 5 years ago. But yet in public, ‘Brand Conservative’ is very much interested in portraying themselves as pasty eaters in order to appeal to a wider audience, and thus gain a better market share.
In business terms, this is a lot like McDonalds beginning to sell salads. No one believes that McDonalds is a healthy place to go eat lunch, but when you see salads in the counter cabinet, it makes you believe they’re healthy, right? Well… no, but that’s the point. Businesses shouldn’t pretend to be something they’re not- very often consumers can see straight through it, & it risks alienating your original customers.
This week has seen many of us rushing to the pumps to fill up- but what has it all taught us? Never underestimate the power of the crowd. In just one day, petrol sales increased by 45%, mainly because of media hype and people following the actions of others. Crowds are becoming more and more influential in terms of business. The benefits of getting a crowd of customers who can become brand ambassadors are never-ending, but at the same time, a crowd of angry customers can be utterly destructive. I’m not so sure that the same amount of people would be filling up this week if no one else had bothered. People have such a wide platform available to let others know of their actions and opinions, and businesses should never underestimate this.
Poor Maria O’Connor. She got fired from The Apprentice this week for falling asleep on the job, but what can we learn from her? By falling asleep, Maria missed out on an important discussion between her team. As a result, she was always going to be at a disadvantage; anything that went wrong after this point could be blamed on her nap.
Humans love routine, and very often once we find something we like, we usually stick with it. Maria teaches us that we need to be alert at all times, otherwise our rivals will simply overtake us and it could be impossible to make up the ground. This in particular means becoming engaged with new technologies, constantly looking to do things better and more efficiently, whilst hoping that it is not you, but rather your competitor who has fallen asleep.
Rachael Simpson, Marketing Analyst Usomo LTD
If you’re interested in exploring a new technology, VoIP, please check out the company I work for www.usomo.co.uk