Thoughts about Salesforce’s Chatter Cloud

People have been using Facebook and Twitter to assist in business dealings for quite a while now. Companies like Yammer have attempted to take the idea of the feed that Facebook and Twitter popularized and translate it to organizations for internal conversations. In my humble opinion, no one has gotten it right until now.

Salesforce has just released their 4th cloud which they have dubbed ‘Chatter.’ Chatter is basically a collaboration cloud that takes the best parts of Facebook (News Feed) and the best parts of Twitter (One-way following) to create a social network for the organization. Not only can I follow a person within my company and have their updates display on my Feed, but I can follow an Opportunity as well. This becomes extremely powerful when multiple individuals are working on one deal and need to collaborate without the clumsiness of email threads.

The power with this concept lies with the passiveness of it all. If I recieve an email, I feel the need to respond to it right away or leave it to die as an unread message in my ever expanding inbox. With Chatter, I can simply view an individual or deal that i’m working on at my convenience and get a bird’s eye view of all happeninings without missing a beat.

Are Banks White Collar Criminals?

I keep hearing more and more complaints about banking institutions.  Obviously people are upset about the expensive bailout the taxpayers incurred for the very institutions that charge interest when they(the taxpayers) fail to manage their money properly.  But what about the countless small errors that banks make?  When are these errors audited?  I know when a teller accidentally gives out an extra $100 to somebody on a withdrawal, that teller is liable for that $100 out of their paycheck…but what about errors that are made in the banks favor?  See an example of a collegues recent experience with Chase Bank:

 

I mean who designs these damn banking systems? This is the second time in a row I’ve been charged an overdraft fee when I’m NOWHERE near a negative balance. I wonder how many people don’t notice them and just pay them without questioning the bank. Aren’t these financial institutions ‘audited?’

Heres the convo I just had w. Chase:

Me: Yea I was charged $70 in overdraft fees for two transactions on 11/12
Chase: Ah yes I see — One charge was $13 the other was $20.
Chase: Well how can I help you?
Me: What were my beginning and ending balances for 11/12?
Chase: I’m seeing a beginning balance of +$X,XXX.XX and an ending balance of +$X,XXX.XX
Me: So wheres the overdraft occurring?
Chase: Please Hold
*waits for 5 mins*
Chase: Ah yes it seems there was a banking error and we’ll credit you $70 by the end of the day
Me: This is the second time this year this has occurred. Does this happen frequently?
Chase: blah blah blah do the best to satisfy our customers blah blah bah.

I wonder how much money they rob from people because theres either an ***hole out there assigning random overdraft fees or someone wrote some s**tty code thats been in a production financial environment for over a year now…….

Overcoming the Learning Curve

Something I’ve learned recently in business is no matter what product or service you may be selling, people will have their own perception of what it does and how it works.

I recently saw a girl try to work an iPod that has never owned one. It was amazing to watch her try and figure out this seemingly alien piece of technology. After chuckling to myself for a minute, I showed her how the click wheel worked and she immediately understood. It took all but 10 seconds for her to grasp the concept, but she still needed to be shown.

I’m trying to translate this experience to my work by not assuming everyone should just ‘get’ our software. Of course I know how it works, i’ve been exposed to it for over two years. I need to take that expertise and translate it to each potential customer and help them overcome the learning curve so they get the most value from our product.

This video is another great example of this concept…