These are letters to Jack, my son, and my daughter, Audrey. You have given me the gift of motherhood. This is just a little gift back. I want to share my experiences with you of your childhood from my perspective of watching you grow - of being your Mom.
Friday, June 20, 2008
I work at a company that many may recognize the name of but a division that is such a teeny tiny part of that company that the explanation accompanying what I do is just too long and complicated to bore people with.
But it’s a business and that’s the start of where I plan on taking this.
Our company is trying to stay competitive, trying to maintain and grow market-share which becomes increasingly more difficult as customers have become WAY more saavy than they used to be. What I mean by this is not only drawn from my corporate experiences but as a customer myself – I want:
the best possible price I can get for the service or product I’m purchasing
the best customer service in purchasing and maintaining that service/item
I want it to be clear what I expect to get from the product or service and then I want that to meet or exceed my expectations.
Basically, I want to pay my money and feel that it was well spent. Because life is expensive! Who wants to pay too much and walk away feeling like you didn’t get what you paid for? No one!
Anyway – the business world seems to have grasped this concept and are tightening the way their businesses are running. Customers expect more of them so they are examining inefficiencies and correcting them, expecting more from their vendors, putting mechanisms in place to measure productivity so they can get the most out of their employees for their corporate dollar and be able to give more to the customer in turn.
I was thinking today that government really should be run more like a business. Can you imagine the improvements that we could make if we did?
For example – I’m thinking about the challenges in our current education system. What if the government allowed companies to sponsor our children’s schools? Businesses already are driven to improve consumer loyalty by showing social consciousness. Mostly this applies currently to being more environmentally friendly, etc, but why not expand on this further?
Already our children are bombarded with advertising in their everyday lives and as parents we help them interpret and control that desire to have everything. It’s part of life. Would it really be so horrible if John F. Kennedy school became John Deere’s Middle School with Green Lunchrooms and Agriculture auditoriums if the trade off for this was being able to pay teachers what they deserve to be paid in order to remain motivated in the learning environment or for the children to have an abundance of up to date text books and facilities that weren’t horribly dated. So what if the computers were all in the shape of tractors – if they were good computers that children could use to prepare them for the world, I could weigh the rest of the factors and help you put it in perspective, I think.
Some might think of this as selling our soul to the devil, but I think we attach way too much morality to business.
What makes it so horribly terrible if a company wants to make money? Where would any of us be without that? As companies strive to remain competitive in today’s economy with customers that are aware of the decisions that they make – their level of social responsibility, etc – this is driving corporate behavior towards being more responsible. A company that is allowed to sponsor a school will feel a responsibility to do a good job of educating and providing the children with what they need because there is so much at stake there. If a company were to abuse a situation like that and teach only about the products that company manufactured – this would be horrible to the organization as a whole. Word would spread and the company would be abandoned by their customers. So, it’s not conceivable that a company would make such a horrible decision because it would mean the end of their business. Thus, self policing by the organization would take place to make sure that everything was done to the best possible degree.
Anyway – I’m thinking of improvements that are unfolding before my eyes here and transferring it in other ways to the outside world and I think it would be a very exciting concept.
Too bad I don’t have a bigger voice. :)