Business moment 9


So when was the last time that you wrote a handwritten note? It’s probably been a while. Technology has changed the way we communicate.We send emails, not lettersext messages, not phone calls.We order delivery instead of cooking dinners in our kitchen. All in the name of efficiency.But here’s the point.Technology has made it easier to communicate. But it hasn’t made it easier to connect with other human beings. I’ve found that the secret to connecting in the high-tech, fast-paced world that we live in, is doing a few small things the old-fashioned way.00:46Write a letter. I’ve written thousands of handwritten notes. Thanking people for advice, thanking them for an interview. It just puts that extra effort to show someone that you really care and that you’re willing to go above and beyond. Some advice for writing a thank-you letter is to really make it clear to the person that you’re writing to the impact that they have had on your life. Talk about something specific. Like “Thank you for the advice that you gave me. It’s because of the advice you gave me, that I am now doing x.”People are looking to make a difference. And so if you can show someone that they’ve really had an impact on the life that you’re living, the life you’re pursuing, it could have a huge impact. Pick up the phone and dial. We’ve hired thousands of employees. And I’ve personally called every single one of them to welcome them to the Compass family. I’m able to set the tone of really what I want the co

Businessperson 1: I’m not sure that I really understand this Scrum thing that they put forward in the meeting. Is it just some jargon that everyone will be using now without understanding it? Does anyone really understand what it means?

Businessperson 2: Ha! Probably not! But I think it’s actually a good way of working. It could help us create much better products.

Businessperson 1: So how does it work?

Businessperson 2: OK. Let’s say your business is an ice-cream parlour, and your project is to make the very best ice-cream sundae you can. That’s the product your team want to make. There are lots of parts to that sundae, so you take one at a time. Your team start with the vanilla ice-cream. They make a batch of the vanilla ice-cream and give it to customers to taste test. And they like it, but feel it could be tastier. So, you add more vanilla flavouring to it and get them to try it again. This time, they love it. Best vanilla ice-cream they’ve ever tasted! You’ve successfully completed that stage of the project. Now you make a batch of the chocolate ice-cream. Most of your customers say that it’s pretty good by itself, but doesn’t mix well with the vanilla. They think it would be better if there was more fudge in it.

Businessperson 1: Do you tweak that recipe too?

Businessperson 2: Yes, you make a new version of the chocolate ice-cream, and get feedback on it. You constantly feed the knowledge you are gaining into the process and building on it. You already know your vanilla ice-cream is the best. The next step is to make your chocolate match it. After that, you’re going to go through the same process with adding toppings, biscuits, and other flavours of ice-cream. Now, maybe you change things because of the customer feedback. But it could be other things, like, you want to use a certain type of chocolate, but the supplier for that particular kind has just gone out of business, or there’s been a problem with the pistachio nut harvest this year, so you decide to not include pistachio nuts. Whatever it is, you build your product one step at a time, and get constant feedback at each stage of the process.

Businessperson 1: How is that different from what we’re already doing?

Businessperson 2: Well, we’ve been doing what they call the ‘waterfall’ method, which is completing each stage and then move on to the next one, before finally completing the product. So, the difference is that what we’ve been doing, is creating the entire ice-cream sundae, and then taking it to the customers and telling them it’s the best. If they don’t agree, they go elsewhere. Maybe they don’t like the chocolate ice-cream we’re using, but we don’t know that. Maybe the toppings are wrong? It’s harder to get feedback on what they don’t like now, as it’s all mixed together. With the scrum method, we’re checking every stage as we go along and are able to present something to the customers. Scrum means we can involve them in the creation of it, use their feedback and come out with a result that everyone likes.

Businessperson 1: That does make a lot of sense actually. Thanks for explaining it. So, you don’t fancy going for ice-cream, do you? I’m suddenly hungry.

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