LearnR-E-S-P-E-C-T

Ryan
writes on October 20, 2007

I just picked up a copy of Seth Godin’s book Small is the New Big and it’s already sparking ideas in my head. Definitely worth picking up.

I love this quote:

Consumers have more power than ever before.
Treating them like they don’t matter doesn’t work.

What he’s essentially saying is that you’ve got to respect your customers. Don’t ever try to bullshit them. Ever.

I’m tempted to shovel a little BS almost daily with DropSend support queries. For instance, our desktop uploader used to not work with our Business Plan. When I would get an email saying “Why doesn’t the desktop tool work with the Business Plan?” it was tempting to say “We’re working on it and it’ll be ready shortly.” The truth was, however, we weren’t even close to working on it. We had a million other things to do first. A couple times I gave people that answer but I knew deep down that it wasn’t actually true.

So I started respecting people by telling them the truth: “I’m really sorry, but it’s currently not compatible with the Business Plan. Unfortunately, it’s not a priority to get that fixed. I’m really sorry for the inconvenience.”

The funny thing is that people would usually respond with something along the lines of “OK, thanks for letting me know.” They just wanted the truth. (Once we finally updated the uploader tool to work with the Business Plan, those emails stopped coming in – should’ve done that sooner!) 😀

0 Responses to “R-E-S-P-E-C-T”

  1. I have been reading Godin’s book as well! Very inspiring of course, and easy to read. However, the book I have found most “content rich” for emerging technology companies is “Crossing the Chasm” by Geoffrey Moore. It’s all about why new tech businesses fail, and has great plans for how to succeed. This author is totally in line with all of Godin’s principles, but has a little more meat. Staying small and focused is hard for start-ups, when it means giving up some short term cash. Staying small and focused seems to be the key to success.

  2. Just out of curiosity, how come the uploader wasn’t compatible with all plans? That seems a bit odd, unless they had totally different DB structures behind them, which would be even more odd.

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