I have always found pictures of prairie dogs popping up from their burrows to be hilarious. There’s something about the idea of this small animal getting a better view of its surroundings that just makes me smile. This made me think of some experiences I’ve had lately with smaller local businesses.
I recently found out about a 7-week course focused on building a business that was both profitable, engaging and fun. I couldn’t resist that combination, so I dropped the company a mail and asked for them to get in touch with me so I could find out more…to see if it would really be something that would address my needs and give me some tools and best practices. I was contacted within the day and the owner asked if we could have a call to talk about it. I agreed.
Any kind of strategic planning requires time, space and an approach that most of us don’t utilize so much in our day-to-day
business. This is too bad, but not surprising. We’re focused on the day-to-day, tactical bits of the business and the strategy time is time not spent on keeping the whole thing moving forward.
I use a lot of different tools in my work every day, as I’m sure you do. Like many computer-bound professionals, I use Microsoft Office apps like Outlook, Word, Powerpoint, and Excel (although I have had a hard time
getting used to viewing Excel more as a tool and less as an adversary, but that’s another story…). I use more than one Internet browser, since each provides different kinds of efficiencies. I use a to-do list app, a social media monitoring tool and a couple of analytics tools, and I use Evernote for all my note-taking and snippet needs…oh, and Windows Media Player for tunes (as a former pro musician, music helps me focus).
I read an article recently by Laura Cioca, Director of Media & Engagement at W2O, about something she calls ‘Fauxthenticity’. She defines this as ‘the tendency some brands have towards assuming we’re all complete idiots.’
She goes on to describe it as a kind of creative laziness that ‘pretends that a brand’s participation in community has anything to do with people.’ She then lists a number of examples, all of which I have seen before and recently. It’s sad really….