This is Not a PR Gaffe.

April 13, 2017

by Roger Pynn

I knew I’d see the headline sooner or later:

6 other PR Nightmares:  United fiasco among worst corporate gaffes

 The Bloomberg story in the Orlando Sentinel said:

“When it comes to bad public relations, it’s pretty tough to top the sight of a United Airlines passenger being dragged, bloodied and screaming, from a flight.”

It went on to say:

“But the fiasco is hardly the first self-inflicted corporate blunder. Munoz can take comfort that it’s happened to others, and in many cases the bosses didn’t lose their jobs, as our PR Tales From Hell illustrate.”

Here’s the problem.  This isn’t a PR problem.  It is a management problem that caused public relations problems.  And it is a classic example of management failing to empower smart decision-making on the front lines.  When the people who engage with the public have to make decisions because of what the operations manual says instead of being empowered to make common sense decisions in the face of trouble, disaster is around the corner.

There were so many options … if only the gate staff had been trained to think for themselves.  I’m sure the folks in United’s public relations organizations would tell you the same thing.


Hot Desking

September 25, 2015

by Kim Stangle 

When I saw this Bloomberg story yesterday about hot desking I had an immediate hunch what they were referring to even though the term seemed to appear out of thin air.

In rowing, we have a term called ‘hot seating’ which is when two crews share the same boat during a regatta.  It’s almost always chaotic, because it typically happens at the dock or finish line without ever taking the boat from the water.

No question that the two terms share a similar concept:  too many people and too few resources.

In hot desking, companies might have 50 desks for 100 employees, knowing that varying schedules would mean everyone would be able to find a workspace during their scheduled office time.

From an efficiency and cost-savings perspective, I get this.  But, then why have office space to begin with?  Co-working spaces have been operating under a similar shared-resource philosophy for years.

Hot desking is being touted as the “new way to work,” but, personally, if I’m going to be sitting at a desk for eight hours a day, I’d at least like to look around and see pictures of my husband and pup.


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