Reading the Cluetrain

Just another weblog

Part 3 – last bit on The Rules

Command-and-control management styles both derive from and reinforce bureaucracy, power tripping and an overall culture of paranoia.  Paranoia kills conversation. That’s its point. But lack of open conversation kills companies. There are two conversations going on. One inside the company. One with the market. In most cases, neither conversation is going very well. Almost invariably, the cause of failure can be traced to obsolete notions of command and control.  I have experienced this. Not here, in the last place I worked, many times, there was a real culture of it. ‘My way or the high way’ and what sucked was once you have been batted down a couple of hundred times you are too paranoid to speak freely. There was a real bitterness within the work force which grew when people eventually escaped. This of course is to the detriment of the company which is a shame as when the teams felt inspired we did some bloody good work and often proved our bosses wrong.  Where I am now, I can speak more freely and I am listened to more than I have ever been which is bloody amazing after the last place. Don’t get me wrong I know there are a lot of people here who don’t think that way, and maybe it’s because I am still pretty new to the organisation but at the moment I am going to enjoy it as much as I can.  We want access to your corporate information, to your plans and strategies, your best thinking, your genuine knowledge. We will not settle for the 4-color brochure, for web sites chock-a-block with eye candy but lacking any substance.  Really? All of it? You want all the strategies and plans? Oh god, I’ve almost hit PR melt down. Okay why am I freaking out like that? Well, that’s all well and good but strategies and plans change and if a company says it all out loud won’t that mean if we don’t do something they will be slagged off for it? Or is it better for the company if every now and again they come out and say, ‘oh, by the way, that thing we said we’d do, well we can’t now sorry.’ Wouldn’t it then look like it didn’t know what the funk it was doing? Nervous, very nervous, don’t get it please explain.  Mind you, I agree with the other bit, most brochures are pretty pony, good for insomnia though. 😉 You’re too busy “doing business” to answer our email? Oh gosh, sorry, gee, we’ll come back later. Maybe. You want us to pay? We want you to pay attention.  Damn right, that’s just good customer service. If anything brings me to melt down its National Rail Enquiries and being ignored, it’s just rude.   


December 4, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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