To start, I first want to say “thanks” for employing me and helping me grow my career. I appreciate the opportunities afforded by a company of our size and influence to give me the visibility and access to expand my knowledge, make industry contacts, and grow beyond the confines of our corporate walls.
That being said, we need to talk.
All of this outside exposure has really opened my eyes to the issues we have internally. Sure, we know we have things to work on, but like any long term relationship, we have learned to ignore the bigger stuff, or create temporary workarounds (I call them “hacks”). Unfortunately, it is clear that this method of operation no longer suits our needs. In order for us to survive, thrive, iterate and innovate, I have a “honeydo” list of activities you should strongly consider to regain my trust and admiration.
In no particular order:
- Identify (org chart, heirarchy), grow, and properly fund web silo, handing reponsibility to those who truly “own the web site”. Please pull front-end development, design, and innovation out of marketing and IT.
- Truly separate back end from presentation layer.
- Fund and implement continual upgrade plan for core systems.
- Stop creating disjointed user experiences by farming out work to random agencies and slapping the brand on their work.
- Say no to “rush jobs” or solutions that need hacks/ workarounds.
- Start creating customer-centric design, not driven by corporate requirements, but customer needs.
- Transition from manufacturer-funded model to independent model that serves customer needs better.
- Continually perform analysis of features of the site and iterate off those findings
- Develop clean data models worthy of distribution, realizing that the web site isn’t the only place this will be used. Once clean data is established, design the web tools necessary to allow individuals to create their own experience, and help them make sense of the data.
- Stop making poor decisions (or no decisions at all) based off “political” considerations.
- Be OK with failure. When things do fail, be willing to admit it and do the analysis so you don’t make the same mistake in the future.
I will be watching anxiously at the progress you make in completing these goals. Remember, our future together and that of subsequent brands and initiatives depends on it!