Its the people, stupid!

How many times have you encountered this?
"Yes, I know what you are saying, but I can't do that. I am not sure who should, but that is not my job."

I recently had this experience & was thinking about it. Here is my 2 cents worth for someone making a statement like this...
1. I (probably) understand what you are asking for, but I really do not care to get involved in it.
2. I work for an organization that does not care either or has failed to communicate / empower / train how an exception should be handled.
3. I am pretty happy with where I am in my career & have no interest in going anywhere (Or I am dating the CEO's relative, & this working hard / smart crap is not for me).

Notice how all the three start with "I".

It does not matter if it is a two person company or a Fortune 50, in the end, everything in a service or experience can boil down to the person you are interacting with.

Hire smart, train wisely, empower empathetically.

Its the people, stupid!

Why automation / online ordering will not outsource humans?

As you can probably tell, I am a big fan of online stuff (which is why I don't have a paper version of my little diary).

Anyways, on a recent trip to San Diego, I tried ordering pizza from Pizza Hut & got into the online v/s human interface issue.

Apparently, Pizza Hut cannot find the Hilton San Diego Resort that I was staying at (& so no Pizza Hut food for me).

Note the address of Hilton on their website...

Here is the disconnect...Note the message from Pizza Hut website...

They can't even find the Hilton. Well, I ended up calling the hotel who recommended me Mountain Mike's (& that is where the Pizza came from).

I am not sure what is the issue, but here it is...

The Microsoft UX (or "We suggest you don't ask us. Test it yourself & find out if it works!")

What do you do when you have a question & cannot find an answer? Read the Manual (Of course we all do that, don't we)

Well, What do you do if the manual does not have that information? Search Online, Google, Ask the company or something..

Well, this post is about my experience with asking the company (Microsoft, in this case).

Recently, I had a question about compatibility of Exchange 2003 & Sharepoint Server 2007 Outlook Web Parts. I Googled but really did not find anything worthwhile other than some passing references. For some reason, MSFT does not have this documented.

So, I sent out an out of the blue email to the pertinent Product Managers & actually got a response (Yay!!!). He was not sure if there are any issues, but politely requested that I should test it out before asking such questions.

Now for an Open Source product I can probably take this answer (although they are probably much better documented in some cases), but for a commercial product, ummm.....No!

I was tempted to ask if he would like the same answer from his car company. How about the Pharmacy? I find this unfortunate because Microsoft has some really great products, but in an experience age....I think they have a pretty long way to go...

I guess the fundamental (albeit cliched question) we all need to ask ourselves everyday is....

Have we done enough to make our customers successful? What is your answer today?

Happy Halloween!!

PS: CC Image courtesy