Friday, January 11, 2008

Sometimes Companies Just Say Yes

I've seen so many companies in which managers put on a false face of bravado, but secretly cower. They are afraid of making any mistake, disrupting their comfortable existence, and avoiding any effort out of the ordinary. The theory is that if you don't do the unusual, you cannot get pilloried for it.

But business is risk, and companies must shake off the dust and try something new at times just to keep from being moribund. Today, IKEA is an example. A comedian and filmmaker, Mark Malkoff, had to have his New York apartment fumigated, so he decided it would be an interesting video to literally move into an IKEA store for the week. He asked - and they said yes. So he's in the store in Paramus, NJ at the moment, having fun and creating an enormous opportunity for positive PR and viral marketing. You can see the ongoing video series here. Realistically, there was little downside for the chain, much potential benefit, but saying no is so easy. Management there didn't, to their credit.

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