Categories
Advocacy

CUSTOMER SERVICE AND WHY IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR IT

When going on holiday I find that it is the little things that make all the difference, don’t you?

You know what I mean – the little extras that make your accommodation, and thus your trip, that much of a nicer place to be.  Those things that make your life that much easier, and a true break for you and your family.

We have just come back from a lovely holiday to Daylesford.

When we book a holiday, we always book self catering and we always book something with airconditioning.  Having a child on the spectrum means we have to think of these sorts of things.

But sometimes, things don’t go to plan.

We arrived at the booking agent to collect the keys to the villa we had booked.  We decided to stay close to town so that when Master J, nearly 17 now, wanted to go on one of his walks – three every single day – we weren’t in an isolated region where my paranoia would wreak total and utter havoc.  This came at a sizeable cost.

It was hot when we arrived, 38 degrees and climbing.  I could not wait to get into our air-conditioned villa and later soak in the hot tub that wouldn’t be that hot because we would have turned off the heating element.

Oh no, that villa isn’t air-conditioned,” the lovely lady sweetly told us.

It definitely said it had air-conditioning,” I protested.

No,” she said, looking at her computer screen, “it definitely says ceiling fans only.

Having a child on the spectrum means that planning is of the utmost importance.  A week of extreme temperatures were forecast, with fires raging through South Australia, the next state over, already.  As I let the words sink in of a week of such temperatures and nothing more than two measly ceiling fans to cool us, I started to get agitated.

I grabbed my phone to download the listing on the accommodation website through which we had booked.  I knew it would be futile.  At this time of year we would be really lucky to find somewhere else.  Being in the country meant very little reception and the website wouldn’t load.

But we booked an air-conditioned villa,” I protested again.

Don’t worry,” she said, again sweetly, “the ceiling fans have been on all day, and a lovely breeze will be blowing in there.

Mr C squeezed my arm, which is his way of saying “please don’t make a scene.”

Once in the car, hot and extremely irate, I expressed the fact that we should have pressed the matter and demanded a place with an air conditioner.

It will be fine,” he said.

We arrived at the villa and as soon as we opened the door a wall of heat greeted us.  True to her word, the villa ceiling fans were indeed going like the clappers.  But it didn’t matter, all they were doing was passing around 38 degree heat, that felt even hotter inside.

Master J felt it too.

It’s stinking hot in here.  And it’s so tiny.

It was true.  The photos on the online listing made it look so much bigger than it actually was.  The bedrooms were large, but the living space was tiny indeed.  It felt like we had been duped.

I managed to log on and get a copy of the features listed on the website.  Sure enough, there it was – AIR CONDITIONING!

Original Stayz Listing

Mr C reminded me that we were booked during peak season, that we were tired, that finding a place during the high season with our list of requirements was going to be nigh on impossible and we were NOT driving back to Melbourne after demanding a refund we were highly unlikely to get.

After a couple of hours, I phoned the booking agent.

I didn’t even try to hide my irritation.  “I’m sorry but the two ceiling fans are not going to cut it.  We would never have booked this villa had we known that there was no air conditioning.  Can you at least send over a couple of standing fans to create a bit of a cross breeze?

We tried to open the windows as a breeze had started outside.  Unfortunately there were no screens on the windows which meant that we were unable to open the windows if we wanted the inside to remain bug free.

A man arrived with the fans.  By this time, we had also tried the TV which didn’t work, so he set about trying to fix that too.

As we unpacked the food for a family of three/four we realised with dismay that the fridge was little more than a bar fridge and that in this heat the majority of what we brought would not go in the fridge and would likely spoil.

As we continued throughout the house, we realised that whilst it “looked” well appointed, it was in fact miserably lacking; the ironing board didn’t work, the shower leaked, the potato peeler didn’t work, the sharp knife wasn’t sharp, there was no bread knife.  In fact, despite appearances the entire accommodation made our stay far harder than it needed to be, especially for the money we paid.

I checked the listing again.  They had changed it!

Altered features listing

They had removed about half the features including the air conditioning.  Luckily, though I don’t know why really, I had taken a screen shot of the before features listing and now had an after features listing shot as well as well.

I have no idea what to do with it mind you.

Customer service is so woefully lacking in this country.  We whinge, we complain, but we have no teeth against the people that have our money and deliver far less than they promise.

We paid for Gold class tickets recently, and our host forgot to come and get us meaning we missed the start of the movie.  When I wrote to complain, I received a letter thanking me for letting them know.  Whilst I appreciated the letter of acknowledgement, what I rightfully expected was a refund since my experience was not Gold Class at all.

A couple of weeks ago I bought a rotating hair drier.  Such was the force of the rotation that I ran the risk of it  pulling the hair out of my wig.  I returned the drier, but not after I was humiliatingly interrogated in a shop full of people, as to why I had bought it in the first place if I knew it was a rotating drier and had I used it because then they couldn’t resell it and thus refund me the money.

I had to return a pair of glasses for the third time as the optometrist had given me the wrong prescription.  When I asked for a refund on lenses I no longer needed, I was accused of trying to garner a discount and that the reason I had been given the wrong prescription is that I had answered the questions incorrectly!!  When I responded with removal of my business I was met with “Well, that’s your choice.”

And therein lies the problem.  We are treated, as customers in this country, with disdain.  We are treated as if everyone is wondering around trying to get something for nothing, as if we are stealing something by asking to get what we actually paid for when it wasn’t delivered.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

I grew up in South Africa.  When I lived there, customer service was incredible.  It was valued and highly regarded.  It also garnered incredible customer loyalty, the lynch pin of any business.

Look at Apple.  How many of us oo and ah at the service you receive in that store.

My friend recently collected a new Ford and despite it being a small entry level car, they made her feel like a million dollars.  There was tea, cake, an unveiling of the car and a sign with her name on it.  You can bet your bottom dollar she will buy Ford again.

Customer service is about creating an experience for your customer that they will never forget.  It doesn’t cost a lot.  But it lasts a long time.  It creates life time loyalty. It is a worthy investment.  Believe me.

We ended up having a lovely holiday despite our accommodation.  I still feel cheated.  The nightly rate was in no way reflective of what we actually received, plus there was false advertising which the booking agent then tried to cover up.  It was dishonest and that soured the experience.  I will never use them again.  Ever.

Please know this:

If we buy something that is not “fit for purpose”, our statutory right says that we are allowed to return it within a period of time.  If we pay for a service that does not deliver what we paid for, we are entitled to a refund.  Please, please fight for your rights.  Please keep pushing for better service.  It will not change if we don’t push for change.  We are not asking for anything to which we aren’t entitled.  We are asking for the retail industry to stop, to stop not delivering what people have paid for.

How has your customer experience been lately?  Has it changed recently do you think?  And if so, why do you imagine that would be?

Have a super day,

Love,

SHW Signature

Categories
Advocacy

With great power comes great responsibility

With great power comes great responsibility.

Do you remember that quote in Spiderman that Uncle Ben says to Spiderman?

I don’t know why but it has always stuck with me.

We live in a time where the every day person has tremendous opportunity to wield incredible power and no more is this true than for the blogger.  Within any given niche there are those that lead the pack, who post prolifically, who have interesting things to say, who inspire us, who have gained a massive, extremely loyal following.

It is this loyal following that brands bank on and that have made some bloggers quite wealthy.

It is also the reason we need to be thinking really carefully about what it is we want to be putting out into the world, and how we want to influence the following we have.

When people listen to what we have to say, when they like us enough to follow us, en masse, we need to take great care.

No more is this true than today in the world of the troll.  A troll is a person who will comment with something negative on a blog, or social media page, that is solely aimed to aggravate and illicit a response from the person who owns the page.  They are counter culture to the blog.  They are agitators and are usually very good at what they do.

Online trolls are pervasive and prolific.  The anonymity that the internet provides means that trolls are increasing.  They are cyber bullies whose sole aim is to create mayhem.

We know this.  We are aware of this.  The best thing to do is to delete the comment, block the troll and get on with your life.  They are seeking the spotlight and the best and most effective strategy is not to give it to them.

Yet some bloggers insist on engaging them.  Which of course is their choice.

But it is what follows that worries me greatly.

The vitriol espoused by their following is nothing short of shocking.  Their behaviour is often a lot worse than the troll, calling them names, attacking their character, attacking who they are, their intelligence, their ethnicity, their appearance, their names, the list goes on.  This of course is all in support of the offended blogger, I get that.  But it doesn’t make it right.

But they deserve it, I hear you cry.

Really?

How does attacking them in the way that they attacked, not you, but a blogger you probably have never met make this situation any better?  Answer:  It doesn’t. It makes it worse.  It gives them the spotlight they crave thereby spurring them on, reaffirms the fact that they are horrible people which is probably what led them to be a troll in the first place, and more importantly it sends even more negativity out into the world that we simply do not need.  And, frankly, it doesn’t put you in a very good light at all.  Indignant or not, you have a choice to just not say anything.

Yumi Stynes said it beautifully when she was criticised recently for taking her beautiful baby, Mercy, to a red carpet event dressed only in her nappy.  Derryn Hench, a man whose sole aim is to antagonise, and agitate, and stir up toxicity, criticised her choice in a brutally cruel way.  A couple of other men chose to follow suit.  Yumi chose not to respond initially and then a few days later explained why.

If you ever feel outrage at something you see online, I suggest you look twice. You’re usually being played. And watch how far that outrage goes: sometimes the behavior of the outraged is far worse than that which provoked it.

We abhor the trolls.  We wish they weren’t there.  But they are.  Part of the human condition is that there will be people who will say and do horrible things just to get a rise out of us.  Their lives are small and this behaviour makes them feel big and important in some twisted way.  People like this have existed forever.

But as bloggers, with a following, we have a choice.  We have a choice not to give them air to breathe.  We have a choice to use our words for good rather than to whip up a frenzy of vitriol.  We have a choice to act with dignity and encourage our readers to do the same.  We have a choice to choose not to become as bad as the troll themselves.  We have a choice to offer the world kindness instead of hate.  We always have a choice.

Until next time,

SHW Signature

Categories
Advocacy

I love that I have a voice

 

It’s a strange thing, isn’t it?  This notion of having a voice.  We see it bandied about so much.  “You are so lucky to have a voice.”  “Use your voice.” “I’m entitled to use my voice.” “I can use my voice to say whatever I like.

But it isn’t the fact that we have a voice that really matters.

It is what we do with it.

We have to ask ourselves, are we using it to add to the world, or to take away from it.

It’s safe to say that the likes of Hitler, Mussolini, Pol Pot had big voices, voices that reverberated across the globe.  Voices that removed the human from humanity.  They did not use their voices to add to the world.

We aren’t so much lucky to have a voice as we are lucky to have a choice.  We live in a time and place where the ability to use the voice isn’t up for debate.  It is how we choose to use that voice that causes some dissent.  We are torn between our growing Western belief that we have a right to say whatever we like versus the inner knowledge that we are born to create, to connect, to add to the world.

Become clear on what it is you want to say, what it is you want to put out into the world, how you want to make it a better place.

I choose to use my voice to highlight the ills that I see in the world, to talk about living with depression, to discuss parenting a child with autism, to try to bring a little more kindness into the world.  Those are my choices.

That is my purpose.

I received in my email today a message from Seth Godin.  I am not a business person, I have nothing to market.  He is a world famous marketer.  But he uses his considerable blogging clout to say so much more.  He chooses to encourage people and businesses (who let’s face it, are always run by people) to be better – better at humanity.  He strives to make a difference.  And he asks us to do the same.  He asks us to think about what it is we really want to send out into the world.  He asks us to contemplate how we want our customers to feel.  He asks us to question what legacy we really want to leave behind.

This very week, I was left feeling humiliated in a store by a store manager who public accused me of trying to garner a further $50 discount when I questioned the less-than-transparent pricing structure of the business.  I had already spent a considerable amount of money but when I came to collect my goods, which took over a month for them to get right, I was asked to pay a further $50.  I questioned their methodology and he chose to go on the defensive and humiliate me.  His voice reverberated across that store and at me as a person.  I will never step inside that store again.  I wonder if he reflected on how he made me feel as a customer.  I wonder if this is really what he intended.  Was this the lasting impression he wanted to leave? Probably not.

We always have a choice.  No matter how crappy our day, no matter how bad things seem, a simple voice of respect, dignity, gentility is always always possible.  Going that extra mile is always possible.  We don’t always feel like it, I know.  Lord knows, I have bad days.  But I am trying to be better.  I am trying to use my voice to send out better things into the world.

Goodness knows the world needs it.

I love that I have a voice.  I love that I have this platform on which to use my voice.  I love that I have a choice on how I am able to use that voice.

Today, with only 28 days until Christmas and all the frantic running around that tends to bring, I am going to try to do better, to be better, to choose to use my voice for better.  How about you?

Until next time,

SHW Signature

 

 

 

This post was written as part of #reverb14 – a blogging initiative hosted by Kat McNally.  The month of December is a good time to reflect on the year that was and for us to contemplate the reverberations that we send out into the world.  Please do hop on over to Kat’s blog and if you feel moved to do so, please join in.  
Categories
Advocacy Human Rights

Australia’s lack of human rights calls for a cup of AmnesTEA

I feel like I live in a country that has gone mad.

Our prime minister, Tony Abbott, is at the United Nations telling them we have the money and resources to be able to support any war effort they deem necessary.

Yet, back home, in the country that he leads, he is sending asylum-seeking children without their parents to detention centres, refusing to acknowledge that our domestic violence and suicide rates are out of control, denying that a climate change issue exists, cutting funding to science programs, refusing to address the aboriginal issues of health and lower mortality rates, and, frankly, acting like a fascist dictator declaring we are under an international terror threat, when anyone with any modicum of intelligence can see we aren’t.

As a nation, we are shocked almost to the point of paralysis.

As a nation, with further anti-terrorism anti-freedom laws having just been passed that declares that our internet can now be fully monitored and any whistle blower who leaks classified documents can now be jailed for up to 10 years, we are more afraid of our own prime minister than we are of the ‘terror’ five thousand miles away.

To a large proportion of us, it feels like it must have felt when Hitler started making all his subtle, liberty-robbing changes to the laws back before world war II.  Those laws got passed and by the time the people of Germany realised that in fact they were living under a dictatorship, it was just too late.  And, as they say, the rest is history.

Whilst Abbott is telling the UN we have all this money to give to the war effort (whose war it actually is has not really been determined as yet), our delightful Minister of Immigration, Scott Morrison has just negotiated with Cambodia to take what have been termed as the Boat People, in what can only be described as a horrible hand-ball of responsibility.  These are people who, under great persecution from governments or wars in their own countries, flee by paying a people smuggler to transport them, on boats that can often best be called floating rafts, to bring them to Australia to seek asylum.

We reward these scared frightened people who have left everything they know and love behind by throwing them in detention centres, located off-shore on islands that once used to be under our sovereign, but we excised so that no-one on these islands could claim any rights to be an Australian.  These detention centres are fenced in, with barbed wire fences and guarded with armed guards (jail anyone?).

The legally asylum-seeking people are given a lovely sparse room cell, with nothing more than a bed and a sink to call home, for an indefinite period of time whilst they are “processed”  (pretty sure that was the term used for the Jews when they were sent to concentration camps).  Many have been there for five years or more.  They are not allowed any rights – no legal representation, very little medical care, no education.  We treat them like dogs.  In fact, our dogs get far better treatment.

Such is the distress caused to these people that the suicide rate is extremely high.  Those who grasp on to some form of hope sew their lips together as a means of protest.  Can you even imagine that?  Sewing your lips together to get some form of attention to your plight.

Since Abbott has come into power, the situation has become even more dire.  Much like what happened in Germany when Jews started going missing, there has been a media lock down.  No medical staff or legal staff is allowed into the compound and a video recording was leaked showing Morrison telling these frightened, persecuted human beings that they made the journey for nothing, since they would never EVER be allowed to set foot on Australian soil.  It has been recently revealed that staff entering the detention centres were bullied so much to ensure their silence, that they experienced extreme mental duress.

I could go into the illegal activity of our government contravening about 20-odd international human rights laws.  I could highlight the fact that in the UNHCR has slammed Australia for its treatment of its asylum seekers and that the Cambodia deal is an appalling indictment.  I could highlight that the human rights atrocities are not only restricted to those off-shore, but on-shore as well, with our own indigenous population.

Instead, I will say that there are people who care.  There are those of us who care so much that come polling day we will be damn sure that the worst prime minister in Australia’s history will NOT get re-elected, despite his desperate attempts at fear mongering us into submission.

In the mean time, there are things we can do.  We can support organisations that work tirelessly to support those who are the victims of human rights atrocities.

Organisations like Amnesty International.

On the 24th October 2014, Amesty International is holding an AmnesTEA.  They are calling for people to hold an event – a morning or afternoon tea, to raise money to help those who are subject to these human rights violations.  That I live in a country who is a major perpetrator of these violations sickens me, but by way of some compensation, I am holding an AmnesTEA and hope that you will join me.  You can find out how to run your own AmnesTEA here.

It is a great opportunity to invite your friends, in solidarity for the basic rights of being human, to chat, to laugh, to make a difference.

If you are unable to hold one yourself, please feel free to donate here.  Any small amount will do.

The news is filled with the indignation of a terror threat, that is going to cost millions, nay billions, to ‘combat’, yet there are over a billion people in the world right now who will not eat tonight, or don’t have running water, or who will die from preventable diseases and are fleeing persecution.  All of these constitute human right violations that can be prevented.

That, my friends, surely has to be worth a cup of tea.

If you do hold an AmnesTEA, please do let me know about it, or if you can think of other ways we can make a difference, do share.

Until next time,

SHW Signature

 

 

 

 

Categories
Advocacy

Death to the self help movement – you don’t need it, honest

I’ve been avoiding housework.  By wandering around bookshops.  It’s my go-to procrastination destination.  Do you have one of those?

I am usually in love with book shops.  Like, totally in love with them.  Like, spend hours and hours in them love.  But today I wasn’t feeling it.

Rather than just ambling, I decided (as part of my procrastination strategy) to go looking for a specific book.  A book on Photoshop.  I have it installed on my new computer and I have a few ideas for my Kindness Bomb project for which it would be really useful.  Except I have no idea how to use it.  I need to learn.  Hence the trip to the bookshop (and the PERFECT excuse not to do my housework).

So, I rock up to the bookshop and there were no books on Photoshop.  In fact, there were hardly any books on technology at all.  There was a very small “Dummies guide to …” section, but that was it.

The bookshop, however, was full to the brim on how to find your passion, reinvent your life, find happiness, do what you love, love what you do and basically tell you how to change the person you are right now.  And biographies, it seems, are definitely on the up – that particular section had almost doubled in size.

It occurred to me that there is a massive trend right now pointing out to people that the life they have is unsatisfactory and that they should be doing something totally different, and the author of the book will show you exactly how.  And if that fails, you can always emulate the life of the people in the bibliographies.

It isn’t really a trend though.  Self help books have been around for hundreds of years.  I recently watched a documentary on Shakespeare and it has been speculated that Romeo and Juliet was inspired by a couple of romance self-help books circulating in Italy at the time (where he penned the play), although I am really hoping that they didn’t suggest people went around killing themselves to show their love for each other.

Of course, I am all for having dreams and making them a reality.  God knows, I have been chasing my (non) dream for goodness how long.  But recently it occurred to me that we are individual souls, with intuition and an inner knowing about our own existence.  Clever marketers have convinced us that we don’t know jack shit about ourselves and that we need their products and books to reinvent our lives.  Facebook is full of unhelpful catch phrases that frankly jut make us feel like we aren’t doing enough.

But you know what, you don’t need it.

You are able to follow your intuition.  You know what you like and deep down inside you is the answer that you may be seeking.

Fear, of course, is the killer of our dreams.  And that fear drives us to look outside of ourselves for the answers to fulfilling our dreams.  We want someone to tell us how to do it because to do it on our own is just too damn scary.

But it isn’t you know.  It’s only scary because we are afraid to fail.  And believe me, I know.  My whole life I have never tried for fear of failure.  My comfort zone is so damn small, it’s just about big enough for a five cent piece.  But I’m changing that.  I’m ditching my self help books and I’m listening to my intuition.

It isn’t easy.  A thousand voices in my head tell me that I am going to fail, that my definition of success will never be reached, that people will laugh, that I have a family and commitments.  All of which may be true.  But so what.  Isn’t it better to just try?

Take my Photoshop learning for instance.  I had this idea that I could create some really cool things on that program, that perhaps I could sell and donate some of the proceeds to those issues that mean a lot to me.  I also thought I could create some free printables just to give to people to brighten their day.

Immediately those voices started in on me, telling me that I am not a designer, or particularly creative, that there over a million sellers on Etsy and who would want to buy my stuff anyway.

As I was walking around that bookshop with all those “your life is crap, buy me to change that” books, I had those voices going in my head.  Who was I to think that I could change the world.

But you know what, multilevel marketing says I can.  All I have to do is make a difference to two peoples’ lives with my message and creativity, and they in turn only have to affect another two people, who then affect another two people.  And you get where I’m going with this right?  You guessed it, before long, my creativity, and my little dream, has suddenly made a difference to hundreds of people, if not thousands.  Not me directly, of course, but who cares.  As long as you lay the first brick, a house can be built.

You have a gift, a dream.  You know what it is.  Deep inside you know it.  You are meant to give that to the world.  You don’t need a book to tell you how to be you.  You need to be the one to tell you how to be you.  Trust that you can be you.

I have spent almost half my life trying to find my passion.  I still have no clue.  But I do know what is important to me – family, love, kindness, honesty, truth.  Those things define me.  From those five things all else springs from me.  My blogging/writing is about my honesty and truth, but it is also about kindness.  My creativity, through my card making and scrapbooking, is totally driven by my family and my love for them.  I give people a piece of me each time I do something creative and the feeling I get from their joy totally feeds me – that’s the essence of creativity.

So, friends, ditch those self-help books and tell me, what gifts are you about to unleash into the world?  What glorious you-ness can we expect?  I can’t wait to hear all about it.

Much love,

SHW Signature

 

 

 

Categories
Advocacy

The announcement of the new Thermomix TM5 has left some with a sour taste

I love my Thermomix.  I truly do.

I first went to a demonstration in February last year.  The minute I saw that little piece of engineering genius in action, I knew I had to have one.

I hate cooking.  My poor mother would spend years trying to instill in me the same love of food and cooking that she had.  She had loads of cookery books, would watch endless cookery programs and took great delight in providing us with heaps of taste tests.  She so badly wanted to pass the baton, but I dropped it.  Big time.

I was lucky.  I married a man who wasn’t all that phased by food either.  He was happy with my boring meat and two veg display, night in and night out.

But then I saw the Thermomix.  Oh dear lord, I knew my food gene had been switched on.  I saw the possibilities.  No more boring food, no more burnt food, no more food disasters.  No more scones that were akin to a brick.  I had to have it.

I banged on about it for 10 long months and finally, on Christmas day, my dream had come true.

My Thermomix

And it has been worth every single cent of it’s very hefty price tag of nearly $2K.

Our foodie journey has only just begun and I am in heaven.  I was, and still am, an evangelical Thermomix convert.

And there are converts all over the place.  Thermomix has been going since 1960, but it only reached Australia’s shores about 10 years ago.  Its rise has been meteoric.  In the last year alone, approximately 50,000 machines have been sold and figures of there being a Thermomix in 1 of every 10 homes in Australia are being bandied about.  It has even been called the Tupperware of the 2000s.

The machine’s credentials not withstanding, that is a lot of profit.

So, it was with some dismay that hundreds of people, who have only just purchased their TM31, woke up to Thermomix Facebook forums full to the brim with the announcement of a new machine – the TM5.

This machine looks amazing – bigger bowl, inbuilt recipes, faster, a slow cooker function (something the old machine does not have) and purported to be only $50 more (although that hasn’t been confirmed).  Interestingly, despite photos of the TM5 being on the UK website, a quick internet search reveals that no formal announcement has been made by Vorwerk, the manufacturers of Thermomix.  In fact, there has been no fan fare at all.  It just sort of appeared.

Thermomix opted not to let anyone, not even its consultants, the face of the company,  know about the release of its new machine until today. Rumours of a new machine have been circulating for a couple of years.  Various mockups have been doing the rounds.  Yet, no launch date was announced.  We just woke up this morning to find a new machine had replaced the old.

And people are angry.  The forums are full of angry people who have just purchased their machines in the last month or so.  People are feeling duped by the fact that they have only just parted with $2K yet a new and better machine is on the table.

People are divided.  Some say suck it up – that the TM31 is still a great machine, some say that at the end of the day it is a first world problem, that the mere fact we can afford this machine and have food to put in it should be enough.

Unsurprisingly I disagree.

I put this on my Facebook status this morning:

I woke up this morning to FB being full of the news of the launch of TM5 (to be announced in Australia later today).

I do think there is an underhandedness about this.

When new models of other things are coming out (iphone, cars, etc.), there is a lot of hype that is created and also the current models are usually discounted to encourage sales of that stock too. I’ve had mine for a year so I am not phased, but for those who have only just received theirs, I do think this is very poor show.

Judging by all the other TMX forums I have been on, Vorwerk Thermomix has done themselves a great disservice. There is an angry tide out there. A lot of people have only just received their thermomixes (some only this past week). It is a massive investment and I know I would feel completely cheated.

Consultants should have been informed, and old models discounted. Some people would wait, but there are those who would have weighed it up and gone with the discounted version, and Thermomix’s credibility would have been salvaged. As it stands now, they have acted with arrogance and I think that is very very sad.”

I know this will divide some people.  It is a company that it is in business to make money.  It is perfectly entitled to do business any way it sees fit, to maximise those profits.  The only problem is that a lot of people go without to save enough money to buy these machines.  Not everyone can afford them, but can see the value in them – the time they save, the health benefits, the ability to feed a food sensitive family, and the list goes on.  So they scrimp and save and do without.  Only to be informed that a new and better machine is available only weeks after they have purchased theirs.

It is understandable that people are angry.  People had no warning.  Thermomix releases a new model once every 12 – 15 years.  It isn’t like the iPhone that releases a new model every year.  There is no predictability with the Thermomix.  People did not have the opportunity to plan.  New machines, considered the creme de la creme of the cooking world, sold last week are now – by virtue of the fact that a newer model is available – considered inferior.  This is simply bad practice.

It will be interesting to see how this pans out.  I think Thermomix have missed a trick.  A lot of hype could have been created for the new machine.  Such is the loyalty to this machine, I know of at least 5 people who would sell their old machine to buy a new one.  As it stands now, a lot of those people who have only just bought machines won’t buy another one in the future.  Their shiny new machine, unfortunately, has left a very sour taste in their mouths and whilst I have owned my machine for a while now, and continue to love it, this strategy has also left a sour taste in mine.

Until next time,

SHW Signature

 

Categories
Advocacy To Others

The world needs Kindness Bombs + I need your help to do it

First of all, let me preface this with there has no thought been put into this.  No planning, no meetings, no marketing, no launch.

I just woke up this morning with an idea.  And I’m a shoot from the hip kind of girl.  I should probably wait, if for no other reason than I have maybe 30 readers of my blog.  A wise girl might wait for the impact to be bigger when greater numbers have built.  A wise girl might.

But if not now, when, and truly when is really a good time anyway?

So, here goes.

The world is messed up, right?  No matter where we go there is media coverage of some awful things.  Death, destruction and madness everywhere. No matter where we look we are bombarded with images of how mankind has lost its humankind.

I call bullshit to that.

I say that there is kindness out there, but we aren’t getting to see it.

I say that all we need to do is become aware of it and then let other people know about it, so that they can see it too.

I say we encourage people to find the kindness and be the kindness.

I say we unleash a torrent of almighty KINDNESS BOMBS

Like I said, no thought, just a dream.  A dream for a world that can see value in its own kind.  A dream for a world that can find the kindness and be the kindness.

So here is the plan:

I want to hear all about your kindness experience.  I want to hear about people who have been kind to you, people who are kind in the community, people who don’t know they are being kind.

I want to hear how you are being kind – to yourself, to others, to the environment, to the world.

I want you to make memes about kindness.

I want to hear about poems of kindness, quotes of kindness, blogs on kindness, companies that are kind.

Remember, ANY kindness thing counts.  It doesn’t have to be perfect, it doesn’t have to be huge.  Even the small things count.

Your baby stops to help an ant off the path before being crushed to death – that counts.

Your son puts the eggs away after your shopping – yep, that counts.

The bus driver stops for an old lady to get on when she has clearly missed the bus – that’s actually huge, that definitely counts.

In short, I want you to plaster kindness every-bloody-where and then I want you to let me know about it.

How can you let me know about it?

By using this hashtag on IG and Twitter and anywhere else you fancy:

#SHWKindnessbomb

 

Tag me in so I can see what you are doing:

Twitter: @sarahheartwrite (note there are no S’s due to the limit on characters)

Instagram: @sarahsheartwrites

Pinterest: @sarahheartwrite (again no S’s)

Facebook: Sarah’s Heart Writes

Now, I have to admit right off the bat I’m pretty weak in the social media department.  Facebook and pinning loads of stuff to pinterest is about my limit.  But I’m willing to learn.  For this, I am so willing to learn.

And for added ease, you can make really cool memes using the amazing, incredible app called Word Swag App (#WordSwagApp).  I only started using it a couple of days ago and I am already a massive fan.  I’ve been sending Mr C little love notes like this one, which is an Edward quote from the Twilight movie:

#SHWkindnessbomb

Are you in?  I’ll start the ball rolling.

Here is a meme on kindness – feel free to share:

#SHWkindnessbomb

Now it’s over to you – Kindness Bomb away!

Yours in kindness,

SHW Signature