Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

An incredibly useful approach to avoid wasting your time...

One of my pet themes and obsessions is getting rid of the customers (and staff!) that I can only describe as pond life or scum - the ones that you hate working with and are a pain in the backside and are not raving fans or ambassadors... they take up loads of your time and you probably lose money by working with them.

A bit of a sweeping statement?



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Paul Clark

paulclark1-42180

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

I'm disappointed Robert. I was considering getting a new pet, and was looking forward to your insightful observations upon the shortcomings of aquatic species as human companions. On a marginally more serious point... if you have staff who are 'pond life', it does beg the question which muppet hired them! ;)

1 comments

Stephen Harvard Davis

stephenharvarddavis-47353

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

Robert, Please accept that I do understand what you were doing in order to generate debate. In literary terms utterly appropriate and I know that it's NOT an attitude you hold in real life. My point was to consider that readers who take this out of context (which some people might do!) and introduce terms into their lives such as "pond life" and "Plebs" can find that the use of such language can backfire badly if it becomes public. I prefer categorising people using numeric or alpha attachments: D, E, F (Desired / Effective / Failed) etc or even 1st quarter, 2nd qtr and so on This disguises the meaning to those outside the business Actually I like the thread and think that reducing levels of unproductive staff and customers a business process that everyone needs to employ. :)

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Stephen Harvard Davis

stephenharvarddavis-47353

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

Robert I agree with your premise that it's better to remove clients or staff that are unproductive or not ambassadors. I guess we've all done this at some time. However, as some of your other correspondents have pointed out the language is unhelpful and I have spent some of my time with companies trying to point this out! At one point I actually worked in a business where a Director referred to the staff as "Pond life". He was arrogant and self-important. The pond life suffered it for some time but after a while started to become less productive when he asked for work, wouldn't undertake voluntary overtime for him and paid less attention to the quality of their work. Then one day the Director found himself in "hot water" with the CEO. This was the pond life's chance and they took it! A large delegation went to the CEO to complain about his attitude and threatened discrimination suits against the company if things didn't change and a public apology...instead the manager resigned (or was he pushed). I have similar stories where customers (pond life) made a misery for a company where they felt they were treated with less care than expected. (It all depends what side of the fence your on) Then there's the politician who calls Police "Plebs" because they don't do what he wants (or is that another argument?) The point I'm making is that we all have customers, staff and even acquaintances that are less productive, less valuable and so on and it's easy to have a system to remove them. But if you take the attitude that they are less important by name calling then it often tends to become a self-fulfilling prophesy. Then there's image: Do people really want it on record that they call their customers "Pond-Life"... Robert? As a broadcaster / public figure you are aware how easy it is to be misrepresented! Even if it wasn't your intention and you use the excuse of generating debate... but some people will believe it! Anyway from the Lilly pad in the corner "Have a great day"...croak

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Carolyn Williams

carolynwilliams-253741

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

Starve them of oxygen, get on with your intention and purpose and gain extra va va voom with all that conserved energy, is my take Rob. There's pond life and real pond life. Even last night my ad went out on social media for those who are passionate and aligned with their intention to call me? C:)x

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Simon West

simonwest

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

Robert - and sometimes the language needs to be VERY controversial :) Simon

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Simon West

simonwest

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

I think language needs to be controversial to get the point across. Some companies are rubbish to deal with. They expect everything and want it NOW. then they pay their bills late - if at all. I'm with Robert - sack 'em! - whatever you call them...

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Anna Figiel

annafigiel-87173

Wildlife Themes: Love The Pond Life .. Ribbitt

Is this the right blog to say how pleased I am to have discovered a frog in my small water feature this week? Small pleasures.

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Fred Rutgers

fredrutgers-186363

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

I guess reading Lyndon's blog on microsegmenting may help select the right timewasters! Let's get things moving! Fred Rutgers

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James Coakes

jamescoakes-61537

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

It's an idea. I can think of some issues:- 1. You have to be completely sure that you are not part of the problem. If you are part of the problem and you follow this plan you'll take a journey ever inwards until you're sat there on your own disagreeing with yourself. 2. Sometimes conflict works. There are some great teams where conflict has existed and has been managed to varying degrees of success. Harmony can be quietly destructive. 3. You have to be in a position where reducing numbers is a viable strategy. Take the current situation on Ecademy. On almost every metric that matters to an online business the recent increase in activity makes it more viable. Do you really want to get rid of that?

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Tamsen Garrie

tamsengarrie1-581943

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

I agree with the sentiment if not the language! A big part of the work I do with business owners is identifying their 'Ideal client' (to include attributes as well as business type etc) as part of their vision, focusing their efforts and messaging in that direction and managing any clients who do not fit it - out! It's a courageous move which is often perceived as a scary one, but as you say Robert, the reality is often that the alternative is costing the business money.

2 comments

Derek Sorensen

dereksorensen-69312

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

I couldn't agree more. Anyone who isn't a raving ambassador for me (whether staff, client or otherwise) is obviously pond scum and should be destroyed. Hmm, that should get rid of 99.9999999% of the world population. So much for Malthus.

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Robert Craven

robert-craven-22343

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

No offence taken. Clealry you don't refer to your less valuable clients in such a manner to their faces. Just trying to make a point. RC

0 comments

Julia McDaid

juliamcdaid-47153

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

It may be a sweeping statement and too harsh for some, though just an application of the 80/20 rule in a way. Personally I think its a great idea, for productivity and a smooth and easy life. If you constantly get rid of the worst the overall picture can only improve :-)

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Alan Stevens

stevensa-38366

Pet Themes: Sack The Pond Life

Robert, I agree with your sentiments, but perhaps would not label my customers in so direct a manner. There are definitely people who take the ****, and they are often those who argue down the cost. We sack them too. The clients I like are the sort I met yesterday, who said "We need this by next Friday, and we're not too bothered about the cost - can you help us?". Best wishes Alan

2 comments