I’m mad at Rosetta Stone right now and I think it is a lesson in how NOT to run a company.
Here is the crux of it: Rosetta Stone is more concerned about preventing software piracy than they are about existing customer satisfaction. These things always come from the top down. Some big important MBA has a spreadsheet which tells him how much richer he could be if their software wasn’t pirated. So they spend a ton of money and create all sorts of processes to prevent piracy. That alone would be fine – I am anti-software-piracy for the most part.
But what has happened psychologically at Rosetta Stone is that everyone, including good, loyal paying customers, is viewed through this lens of suspicion. The focus is not on making sure customers are happy, it’s on making sure they are not pirates. The goal is not to make sure customers get what they want, it’s on making sure Rosetta Stone gets what it wants.
This is completely backwards. It’s a cancer in an organization. You can never put a corporate goal above the goals of your customers. Without your customers there is no corporation.
I’ve tweeted many times about how much I like Rosetta Stone. Now I am tweeting about how much I hate Rosetta Stone the company. That is a colossal failure of management and a sign, frankly, of a company in decline.
UPDATE: Someone at Rosetta Stone came through, solved my problem and took responsibility for the runaround I had been getting. They even said they read this blog post! I can’t say how or if Rosetta Stone will address the big picture ideas I mention above, but they did, in the end, make sure I was happy and I appreciate that a lot.
2010-02-11 » lolife