There are two bizarre reactions people have when they perceive someone to be either superior or inferior to them: the ‘tall poppy syndrome’ and the ‘underdog mentality’. The underdog mentality is that if you put yourself down, people will have your back and try to lift you up. Tall poppy syndrome is that if you’re arrogant and put yourself too high on the pedestal, people will want to cut you down.
In my book, ‘Flawsome’, there’s a chapter called ‘When it Hits the Fan’, which is about crisis management and how you can deal with crises in a Flawsome way for some incredible results. The tall poppy syndrome dictates that we’ll quickly chop someone down when given a chance, and an organisational crisis is certainly an opportunity for customers to take advantage of that. If you can’t beat them, join them. One of the best ways to disarm people who are criticising you is to join in and poke fun at yourself. Self-deprecating humour can go a long way to help defuse a situation.
When Innocent Drinks (a United Kingdom-based smoothie manufacturer) posted out a coupon 10 mg online ambien buy that couldn’t be redeemed because of an incorrect barcode, they responded with an email apologising to all recipients and said that they would replace the coupon with one that worked and finished by suggesting that customers could “keep [the old voucher] as a memento of our stupidity”.
When Lagunitas, a craft brewery from Northern California in the United States wasn’t able to produce its popular ‘Brown Shugga’ seasonal ale in time for Christmas, the company instead released a substitute called ‘Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale: Brown Shugga Substitute’. They told customers: “We just ran out of capacity. There is nothing cool about screwing up this badly and we know it.” The substitute came with a self-deprecating apology: “There is no joy in our hearts and the best we can hope for is a quick and merciful end. F*@& us. This totally blows. Whatever. We freaking munch mouldy donkey butt and we just want it all to be over.”
For a major organisational crisis, humour could make the situation worse, but it can certainly keep a lid a smaller issues.