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  • Corporate Babble & Jargon

    Gobbledegook nomination material?

    impressive improvements in terms of deeply embedded customer centricity, dramatically increased speed to market and empowered and engaged employees with greater productivity
    You whaaaaat?

    When Spark sputters and turns to an Ember
    15 June 2018
    Scrum, the version of Agile that Spark is largely adopting, typically stipulates that work is broken down into "sprints" lasting two to four weeks and carried out by "squads" of between five and nine people. A "scrum master" and daily meetings lasting no more than 15 minutes are often advocated to keep squads "focused" on the job at hand.

    Indeed, Agile has a whole vocabulary that when mixed with management-speak may leave cynics scratching their heads or rolling in the aisles.

    "We set up three frontrunner Agile 'tribes' in February and these tribes are already demonstrating impressive improvements in terms of deeply embedded customer centricity, dramatically increased speed to market and empowered and engaged employees with greater productivity," Spark chief executive Simon Moutter said in a written statement in May.
    Last edited by Perry; 16-06-2018, 03:01 PM.
    Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

  • #2
    It makes sense to me. But then I know a little about Agile, sprints etc.
    Squadly dinky do!

    Comment


    • #3
      Get real, David.

      The idea that Telecon has any form of customer centricity is ROTFLMAO stuff.

      Shareholder centricity, perhaps.
      Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Perry View Post
        Get real, David.

        The idea that Telecon has any form of customer centricity is ROTFLMAO stuff.

        Shareholder centricity, perhaps.
        You are wrong Perry.
        Having worked for Spark from NZPO days (40 years and counting) I can attest to the them being more interested in their customers than ever before.
        It has been quite a change really and started with the rebrand to Spark. It has been amazing to watch from the inside.

        Comment


        • #5
          I wonder if the view from inside and outside are very different.

          Long ago, I have had great service from Telecon. Occasional glimpses of good service since then. Generally, though, long call centre wait times, difficult-to-understand American-accented Filipinos on the other end, etc. Having chatted with a few Chorus techs has given me additional behind-the-scenes insights. Getting rid of senior, knowledgeable network techs who had a lifetime of experience, but somehow became too expensive to retain. I have two friends who are retired Telecon-employed electricians.

          Gattung's 2006 admission that the company's pricing policies were designed to confuse simply revealed what most everyone knew, anyway - they were being screwed. And should we mention the XT Notwork fiasco? And the out-sourcing the jobs of NZrs to cheap foreign labour countries is an example of corporate ethics being zero.

          I don't care who else does it and I do recognise that gummint making it possible is also a factor. Do corporate values and ethics come down from the top? I'd say they do - only the degree varies.

          Originally posted by Gattung
          Think about pricing. What has every telco in the world done in the past? It's used confusion as its chief marketing tool. And that's fine, said Gattung in a speech recorded on March 20.

          You could argue that that's how all of us keep calling prices up and get those revenues, high-margin businesses, keep them going for a lot longer than would have been the case.

          But at some level, whether they consciously articulate or not, customers know that's what the game has been. They know we're not being straight up.
          Talking about changes for the better and them actually happening are two different things.
          Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

          Comment


          • #6
            Gattung is history - as I said the company change a lot with the rebranding.
            There is a conscious effort to put the customer to the front.
            Doesn't always work (no one is perfect) but they really do try.

            Things like bringing back store because people needed them.
            There are a lot of in-NZ help centre staff.
            Some people wouldn't believe it, I suspect because they don't want to.
            (The XT fiasco was a big mistake - it wasn't because they wanted to screw the customer either!)

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Wayne View Post
              Gattung is history - as I said the company changed a lot with the rebranding.
              In that context, change is like weather.

              It can be good or bad when the word is not qualified with details or adjectives.

              Originally posted by Wayne View Post
              There is a conscious effort to put the customer to the front.
              Doesn't always work (no one is perfect) but they really do try.
              Things like bringing back stores because people needed them.
              There are a lot of in-NZ help centre staff.
              Some people wouldn't believe it, I suspect because they don't want to.
              (The XT fiasco was a big mistake - it wasn't because they wanted to screw the customer either!)
              I speak not of - or from - belief, but from experience. I recall asking for circular group hunting on my second line at home. I could not have it, they said, because their policy overrode my (the consumer's) request. So I gave up the malibox and the second line.

              There's an old adage that goes:

              Your actions speak so loudly that I cannot hear what you're saying.

              Remind us, what was the re-branding cost? $20 million, wasn't it?

              For what, really?

              Telecom's chief executive Simon Moutter says spending $20 million in the next six months to ditch one of the most recognised brands in the country will be money well spent. The company's profits are falling and sales are dropping faster than it can cut costs, mainly by laying off staff. Telecom's move to change its name to Spark comes after it has just spent $5 million on refreshing the Telecom brand.
              Sounds a lot like re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Instead of tinkering with an 'image,' what if they'd done something positive for customers, instead? Like sent a bonus rebate to all their customers? Let's presume 5 million customers. A loyalty account credit of $100 may've been helpful with the falling [churn?] sales and would probably still be less in actual costs that the $20 +5M spent externally on advertising, PR companies, new business cards, sign-writers, etc.

              If it were not for the commanding position it was put in, in 1990 by the stupidity of the Labour gummint concerned, Telecom would've become an ember, rather than a spark.
              Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Perry View Post
                In that context, change is like weather.

                It can be good or bad when the word is not qualified with details or adjectives.



                I speak not of - or from - belief, but from experience. I recall asking for circular group hunting on my second line at home. I could not have it, they said, because their policy overrode my (the consumer's) request. So I gave up the malibox and the second line.

                There's an old adage that goes:

                Your actions speak so loudly that I cannot hear what you're saying.

                Remind us, what was the re-branding cost? $20 million, wasn't it?

                For what, really?



                Sounds a lot like re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Instead of tinkering with an 'image,' what if they'd done something positive for customers, instead? Like sent a bonus rebate to all their customers? Let's presume 5 million customers. A loyalty account credit of $100 may've been helpful with the falling [churn?] sales and would probably still be less in actual costs that the $20 +5M spent externally on advertising, PR companies, new business cards, sign-writers, etc.

                If it were not for the commanding position it was put in, in 1990 by the stupidity of the Labour gummint concerned, Telecom would've become an ember, rather than a spark.
                You talk historical.
                I said change but had already said previously it was for the better - context!

                You talk of wanting circular group hunting at home - when was this? Recently?
                I have 40+ years history with the company and have seen what it used to do.


                Does it matter to the customer what the rebranding cost if the outcome is for the better (a shareholder issue surely).
                The rebranding, I think, worked well.
                At the time I was sceptical but there was real change in the culture at the time - it wasn't just playing lip service and, as you say, re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

                You suggest a rebate - that would be forgotten very quickly.
                How about lower prices and better products. Customers aren't locked into Spark - there is real competition - but the company seems to be doing alright with market share.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Wayne View Post
                  You talk of wanting circular group hunting at home - when was this? Recently?
                  A few years back, now. Around the time they were slowly gutting Call Minder and butchering the VSP / Message Exchange.

                  Originally posted by Wayne View Post
                  Does it matter to the customer what the rebranding cost if the outcome is for the better (a shareholder issue surely).
                  The rebranding, I think, worked well.
                  At the time I was sceptical but there was real change in the culture at the time - it wasn't just playing lip service and, as you say, re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.
                  I await the culture change betterment (how would I notice?) along with an "outcome for the better," but I wont be holding my breath. As for "worked well," those on the receiving end of the $20M would doubtless agree. The customers and shareholders who provided that $20M may have a different perspective.

                  Originally posted by Wayne View Post
                  You suggest a rebate - that would be forgotten very quickly.
                  How about lower prices and better products. Customers aren't locked into Spark - there is real competition - but the company seems to be doing alright with market share.
                  Lower prices and better products and a rebate are not mutually exclusive.

                  Better the devil I know that the one I don't. I've stuck with Telecon (48 years) simply because the ancillary costs of changing providers are significant. I suspect that they know that.

                  I'm suspicious of cheap talk about customer focussed care and the like. If it was as good as asserted, there would be no need to shout about it. People would know from their experiences that things were better.

                  No 1 in Roberts Rules of Advertising:
                  1) Most advertisers make their loudest claims about what is actually their product’s weakest point. I.e. If the product is too small, the advertising will call it “roomy,” hoping folks won’t notice. If the product is really roomy, the fact is self-evident and need not be advertised.
                  Anyway, Wayne - it's not all bad. But when I see jargon like that, my BS antennae starts twitching.

                  If it's worked for you, that's good.
                  Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Perry View Post
                    A few years back, now. Around the time they were slowly gutting Call Minder and butchering the VSP / Message Exchange.
                    So ancient history

                    I await the culture change betterment (how would I notice?) along with an "outcome for the better," but I wont be holding my breath. As for "worked well," those on the receiving end of the $20M would doubtless agree. The customers and shareholders who provided that $20M may have a different perspective.
                    Customers weren't charged more for the change so it was shareholders who paid via reduced profit.

                    Lower prices and better products and a rebate are not mutually exclusive.
                    True but what would be the commercial rational? After all Spark is a commercial entiry.

                    Better the devil I know that the one I don't. I've stuck with Telecon (48 years) simply because the ancillary costs of changing providers are significant. I suspect that they know that.
                    With number portability, free email services and many ISPs there is little to lock you into one provider.
                    Maybe you are just happy with what you have, happy to moan, or can't be arsed?
                    Ring up another provider - they'll have you moved in a flash complete with your old phone numbers.
                    Maybe save some money, probably won't get better Internet bandwidth.

                    I'm suspicious of cheap talk about customer focussed care and the like. If it was as good as asserted, there would be no need to shout about it. People would know from their experiences that things were better.

                    No 1 in Roberts Rules of Advertising:


                    Anyway, Wayne - it's not all bad. But when I see jargon like that, my BS antennae starts twitching.

                    If it's worked for you, that's good.
                    For me it is nothing to do with marketing.
                    It is to do with what I see, the change in thinking that the company has had.
                    I am probably as cynical (and sceptical)as you but the changes are real (and I didn't drink the cool-aide).
                    I certainly cringe a lot less at the things that happen around here.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Wayne View Post
                      For me it is nothing to do with marketing.
                      It is to do with what I see . . .
                      Isn't that a "there you have it" situation?

                      Marketing today is all about making people 'see' something different to reality.

                      I'm not interested in perceptions crafted by spin doctors et al.

                      I'm concerned only with my experiences. And, as far as that goes . . .

                      . . . you're right: I can't be bothered moving, for the reasons I gave earlier.

                      I've made quite a few inquiries and been presented with a few offers, over the years.

                      Nothing tempting enough to warrant the hassle factor of changing.

                      Especially as most all of them have to operate from the same network.
                      Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Be wary of Sparks new(er) rollover data plans. They now have the 28 day length that Vodafone have.

                        This means you pay 13 times a year instead of 12.

                        As for Internet connections, it's good to keep up to date with offers. Went from VDSL to fiber and monthly bill reduced $5 and got lightbox and 3 months free. Not that they told me I was paying to much for a while.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I don't share Wayne's optimism

                          Originally posted by Sportsvee View Post
                          Be wary of Sparks new(er) rollover data plans. They now have the 28 day length that Vodafone have. This means you pay 13 times a year instead of 12.
                          Sounds just like the Telecon of old. Plus . . .

                          Payt by 19th instead of 20th
                          Penalties for late payt;
                          (and that's likely to mostly be fixed charges a month in advance!)
                          Want a great looking concrete swimming pool in Hawke's Bay? Designer Pools will do the job for you!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Perry View Post
                            Isn't that a "there you have it" situation?

                            Marketing today is all about making people 'see' something different to reality.

                            I'm not interested in perceptions crafted by spin doctors et al.

                            I'm concerned only with my experiences. And, as far as that goes . . .

                            . . . you're right: I can't be bothered moving, for the reasons I gave earlier.

                            I've made quite a few inquiries and been presented with a few offers, over the years.

                            Nothing tempting enough to warrant the hassle factor of changing.

                            Especially as most all of them have to operate from the same network.
                            Marketing has always been "about making people 'see' something different to reality".
                            From selling drugs out of the back of a wagon (Dr Strange's Magical Tonic) to selling beach sections at low tide.

                            Regarding your experiences if you want to judge Spark (or anyone else really) judge them on what they do now - not what they did 30+ years ago.

                            In the broadband space they do operate over the same last mile networks but the rest (from LFC handover to the Internet) counts too - they aren't all equal.
                            In the mobile space we have 3 physical networks in NZ so they are different.

                            You are obviously happy with what you have or you would have changed - as I suggested with number portability (been around for a long time now) you don't have to change your phone number (fixed line or cellular).

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sportsvee View Post
                              Be wary of Sparks new(er) rollover data plans. They now have the 28 day length that Vodafone have.

                              This means you pay 13 times a year instead of 12.
                              I don't think that is true.
                              Do you have a link for that?

                              Comment

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