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You Can't Rely on Efficiency Alone

This post will take you about 4 minutes to read.


Re-routing.

That’s what I heard traveling home from the mountains. I knew where I was going. I just got off the interstate and was headed home.

Rather than turn off the Google Maps app, I left it on. And it didn’t agree with me.

Re-routing. Five seconds past. Re-routing.

It’s as if the lady wanted to jump through the phone and say, “why are you going this way? It takes twice as long.”

Re-routing.


Straight line. You hear that this is the fastest route between to points. It’s the most efficient.

When you drive do you always take the fastest route? The interstate or the highway? Maybe the freeway?

Or do you take the scenic route sometimes? The backroads? Or the “long way”?

And what route do companies take? You always want them to take the fastest, right?

Instant gratification. You want your item shipped now. The red light to turn green. And a response to your text message immediately.

Efficiency wins. That’s what we were taught. Henry Ford once said, “efficient industry is the sole key to prosperity.”


I would say companies that are just transactional, that are at this point just relying on things like efficiency, are probably going to be missing something in the future.

Valerie Coulton

Valerie Coulton is right. Coulton and Alistair Croll explore the idea of servant leadership and how companies must disrupt themselves. Because efficiency is not the only thing that matters anymore.

Coulton continues, “if you don’t somehow feel that they [companies] take some interest in at least your satisfaction or in your comfort, and if not your delight, then I think they’re in danger.”

Amazon

Amazon breathes efficiency. Fast delivery. One click purchases. Robot run fulfillment centers.

Its built an empire on being efficient. Amazon pays attention to customer service too. It makes clever recommendations for books and keeps you happy with free shipping. Its new MayDay button delivers instant face-to-face customer service.

Amazon is a transactional company. It relies on efficiency. Is it in danger?

Kindle Unlimited is a new service from Amazon. You can pay $9.99 a month for all you can read (and listen) books. An interesting approach.

You can try the service for one month free of charge. Why not? Upon signing up for Kindle Unlimited, I received an email that prompted me to get started. With one click, tons of books were at my fingertips.

The choices were dead simple.

amazon-efficient.png

Read for free. Buy with 1-Click. Give as a gift.

Efficient.

Kindle Unlimited is a solid service. But after a week passed, and I was still plugging away reading one book, I knew it wasn’t going to worth the $9.99 a month.

It was time to cancel. First, I traveled to Amazon and attempted to cancel my free trial. No dice.

Next, I re-opened the original email and scanned for how to cancel or any information on the free trial. Below is the fine print I found in the email.

Your Kindle Unlimited subscription will continue after your free trial until cancelled. If you do not wish to continue for $9.99/month plus any applicable taxes, you may cancel anytime by visiting Your Account and adjusting your subscription settings.

Now, I found myself searching for the “Your Account” section on Amazon. A few more minutes passed. Couldn’t find my “subscription settings” either. Frustrated.

Re-routing.

I headed over to twitter and searched “how to cancel Kindle Unlimited”. And I found this tweet from @TheInternetPatrol.

cancel-kindle-unlimited.png

There is a step-by-step guide to cancel this free trial. That’s absurd. A company that turns complicated into simple fails to make it easy to cancel.

I know, that’s Amazon doing their job. But bullshit. If Amazon can make me buy something in one click and deliver something to me via a drone, why does it take a six step guide to cancel a service?

It feels like Jeff Bezos is just laughing at me. And I’m not the only one. Just take a look at the comments of The Internet Patrol guide.

internet-patrol-comments.png

Amazon is not taking any interest in our comfort. It’s transactional. Efficient.

You can’t rely on efficiency alone anymore. Amazon is not in immediate danger, but are we starting to lose our religion toward the brand? Time will tell.


Re-routing.

I drove all the way home ignoring the lady on Google Maps begging me to go the more efficient route. Because I didn’t want to go home the fastest way.

I wanted to drive by my old friend’s street that brings back crazy memories. The country roads that make feel comfortable. And the restaurant (Fiesta Grill) that I never go to anymore.

The scenic route is not the most efficient. But sometimes it’s the most satisfying.

Companies need to re-route efficiency. And focus on feelings.



Find me on Twitter @cjgallo or GitHub @gallochris or Instagram @heygallo.