I was reading this post from Om and was thinking a bit :: http://om.co/2014/11/21/aereo-fab-kaput/
You can skip the whole thing and go to the end of the post to ponder this:
PS: I think both those companies failed the “will I miss them or the service they provide” test!
In the end no matter what happens if people don’t need or yearn for the service then the service probably won’t make it.
For both Fab and Aereo though, the only thing I recall is hearing about the two CEO’s and the negativity around them. The Fab CEO was the I can do no wrong and I will spend huge sums of money to win. In the end it doesn’t look like it worked. He also pushed out a lot of core, early people and continued his very aggressive strategy to win all the way down.
With Aereo I actually feel like it was a neat invention and might have survived but the CEO started out picking a very public fight with the very people who owned the content versus maybe starting out by saying disruption was needed but he would kick revenue back to broadcasters versus make money on them while bad mouthing them. Whether the service was needed or not the company was tainted by the loud mouth of the CEO. Also didn’t work in the end.
Of course there are exceptions to all of this – Uber is good one. Company is killing it even though they have an exec team that appears, but I don’t think they really are, tone deaf to moral issues.
Here is Om again with a perfect post on this dilemma :: http://om.co/2014/11/26/technology-and-the-moral-dimension/
What happens when I dive into all this reading is I think a lot about what I am working on. Does the stuff I do really matter? Will anyone miss it when it goes away? Are my customers delighted? What’s tough for me is sometimes I see people or products succeed even when the people behind them have no moral compass. I know I should not look at it what way but sometimes envy can cloud my own moral compass. I have to remind myself that I should always strive to do the right thing by my product, my co-workers and my customers.
I do believe Karma wins in the end.
I think about this a lot. We actually use it when we talk about Spuul versus the others. We don’t have phone support – I think something we will try to add eventually but we are fairly maniacal about replying to emaail, tweets, fb and app store comments in play store. Looking at you Apple for sucking big by not adding this feature. It is a mindset but I think one that is very worthwhile. There are some great points in here about the angles to take – I love the lose every fight one. Great point. I need to remember that one. Anyways – good advice here and I urge every startup to think about this more than they do. I am appalled at the customer service of a lot of local services. The black hole issue I have experienced more than a few times.
Sometimes current events remind me that Karma wins in the end. I’ll just leave it at that.
From Gruber I happened to read this post on politeness. It’s so good. I can’t claim to be this polite but damn I wish I was. We just had a small get together with some friends and family for my daughter’s birthday. She is two now. I hope I can teach her how to be this polite and caring.
I have touched on this subject slightly before – here: http://www.nokpis.com/2013/03/08/learning-from-the-masters/ and http://www.nokpis.com/2013/06/19/being-a-connector/ . The idea being that your past WILL alter your future. How you treat people will come back to delight or haunt you.
I think a lot about my past and can even recall specific events where I was NOT polite. It could be that I was too young to contemplate how my actions would be perceived. I wish even now I could go back and fix those events. Other times I was not polite and I knew it. I wish I could also fix those events as well but I am glad I remember them. A constant reminder helps me to be polite in the present.
I am older now. I think one of the coolest things about aging is that I can get better at my craft – the art of being me. I don’t care so much anymore what I wear or what people think of me. Other than if people meet me, or hear me speak or hear others speak of me – that they will have a good impression of me. I try to remind myself that this is more important than fashion, more important than my job and will in some way lead to delight in my future.
I am sure that I can improve upon this process. I will try. Starting today to be even more polite than I think I am.