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Automation And Ineptness

by David Brock on February 22nd, 2022

Automation and technology, properly implemented can do tremendous things to augment our capabilities. It can make us more productive. It can enable us to be more efficient. It can give us deeper knowledge and insight into the people we seek to engage.

It’s hard to imagine not leveraging technology to help improve our ability to connect and create real impact with our prospects and customers.

At the same time, like virtually everything, automation can be horribly dangerous. It enables us to create crap at the speed of light. It enables us to demonstrate our ineptness, lack of caring, absence of empathy, and our ineptness.

Sadly, it seems too many leverage automation to demonstrate the very worst of themselves and their companies, rather than creating meaning and value.

Below is an example of what I received today. It is followed by my response:


Dear Anne:

[Company X] want to wish you a very Happy Birthday! We look forward to continuing our relationship with you this year and many years to come, and wish you nothing but the best for you on your special day. Cheers!

Best regards, [Company X]

My response:

Thank you for this note. I will use it as an example of one of the most inept prospecting/relationship building processes I have experienced.

Some errors:

1. Clearly, you got this from some sort of list provider. You have sent this to my email, yet addressed it to “Anne.” My name is Dave, it is not my birthday. If you had the relationship you claim with Anne, you would have known this and addressed it correctly.

2. You cite your relationship and desire to continue it. This is interesting, it seems with such a valued relationship, you know that “Anne” is neither her full first name, but also that she only uses her full first name for legal documents. Everyone, even those with passing relationships, know her by her nickname and only address he by that name.

3. Again, you cite the valued relationship and your deep desire to continue it in the coming year. I’m left with the question, “How have you maintained this relationship? “Anne” (my wife) passed away 2 years ago….”

One can only conclude this is representative of the quality of your work, your integrity, and your “caring” for clients and prospects.

We are better than this, our prospects and customers deserve better than this.

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