I just do not understand it. Nearly every business I visit seems to have a weird, self-destructive, gene at work. No to be overly blunt, but I see really stupid behavior at most businesses. When suggestions are gently placed on the table to correct these destructive behaviors, rather than adopt changes, managers and owners will dig deeper into stupid.
That’s pretty blunt but there is no other way to describe this business killing pathogen.
This isn’t just me being cynical. I hear the same thing from executives who reach out to me. The common theme is “Why would they do this? It’s obviously killing the business!”
It is obvious. That’s the really weird part. It’s not like it requires months of data analysis to conclude that not adopting a plan for marketing will hurt a business. Few businesses will so much as discuss where they stand in the market. Eyes roll.
One large business appointed a new upper-level manager to correct a seriously failing department. The department was packed with unqualified, incompetent and dangerously belligerent employees. When the manager began to make corrections, he was instructed by superiors to “back off”. A year later, the department continues to flounder.
I speak with marketing managers who have no idea what is happening in product development within their own company. “We’ll let you know when you need to know.” There’s a morale builder.
One CEO who had grand plans to grow a business in 2012 refused my guidance. (Note: Please understand that I am under no delusion that not accepting my advice means certain doom. But if I can identify some potential problems, would it not be worth it to just hear what I might have to say?)
Anyway, this CEO had some serious management problems. He was horrible with people. I mean ‘bring them to tears with the shouting of obscenities’ horrible. I recommend that we work together for 6 months. I would assist with the difficult issues and help him learn to process problems without blowing up. He even recognized this temper problem as a flaw he needed to overcome. When I proposed we work in unison, he turned me down. Rudely too. “I don’t need you.” He was fired 6 months later.
Another company retained me to handle marketing. However, the owner insists on dictating every word on every piece produced. “No, I don’t want your feedback; just make this for us and get it out there.” Why would you hire someone with expertise only to hamper their work?
The business has the final say so why not accept the input? That is absurd. I see it daily.
One company has a “request for information” form on their website. The filled out form goes to an incorrect email address. No one at the company receives the information. No one can. Shouldn’t we fix that? “We’ll take of that. You don’t need to worry about it.” A year later, a YEAR, it remains unfixed.
If we are going to turn this economy around, we have to get off of these insanely stupid ego trips and start working together.