Pharma Strategy Blog

Commentary on Pharma & Biotech Oncology / Hematology New Product Development

Seth Godin had a great point in his blog today:

"If you need to get your audacious proposal/clever ad/new project past your boss, go ahead and add some gratuitous brackets here and {there}.

"Hey, what are these weird brackets doing here," she might say.

"Oh, I like them. I think they add drama to the headline."

"Take them out!"

Giving in early makes it easier to keep the important stuff in later."

This is so true and reminds me of my own experience.  For review teams in Pharma, I used to try similar distraction activities by writing in British English here and there in marketing materials.  The team would diligently focus on, and pour over such stuff, determined not to miss one. 

This was very useful because, you've guessed it, there was less focus on what I considered to be the more important stuff.  And if a British spelling sneaked through, it made me delightfully happy and the team doubly focused on it the next time 🙂

Everyone was a winner.

Posted via email from sally church’s posterous

7 Responses to “Winning by deletion”

  1. Sean

    I thought that Seth’s post was a little sad in that it promotes being deceptive to your boss.
    If as an employee, you need to use a tactic to get information ‘past’ your boss then you are not being open with them.
    Maybe the answer is not about coming with distraction activities, but focusing on how to best explain your proposal so that you will have your boss’s support.

  2. MaverickNY

    I see your point, Sean, but not sure it was meant in that way at all.
    We’ve all had bosses who nit pick or focus on changes for the sake of changes sometimes.
    For me, I’ve always tried to explain concepts up front regarding what our goals and intentions were with review committees and always be flexible to other ideas or different approaches to achieve the same end.

  3. Sean

    Thanks for the reply! I agree about having nit picky bosses that only focus on changes is annoying, but wouldn’t the solution be to address that issue and not work around it?
    I am probably being too idealistic 🙂

  4. Pharma Ed

    I must say I agree with maverick on this one. Sometimes people have differences in opinion and this is just a light hearted way to try and get your view across. It’s certainly not meant in a deceptive way, in fact its probably something that people can have a bit of fun with.

  5. Sean

    I guess I have read into this wrong…
    I thought ‘distraction activities’ meant that you were writing in British English on purpose to focus the reviewers attention off of your ‘more important stuff’.
    I did not realize that this was a light hearted way to get a point across. If the reviewers are distracted by finding British English to fix then isn’t this less time they have to focus on your ‘more important stuff’?
    Just speaking for myself, I would not do ‘distraction activities’ since they do not seem productive.

  6. MaverickNY

    Sean, well I guess I should have been less obviously flippant, but anyone who has sat through countless review committee meetings every week needs some light hearted humour to break up the tedium occasionally or we would all go stir crazy!
    The reviewers and I all took our roles very seriously indeed. It is a responsibility to get things right with accuracy and with appropriate fair balance, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t have a little distraction ie humour, as opposed to deliberate disruption, to the process.

  7. MaverickNY

    Sean, well I guess I should have been less obviously flippant, but anyone who has sat through countless review committee meetings every week needs some light hearted humour to break up the tedium occasionally or we would all go stir crazy!
    The reviewers and I all took our roles very seriously indeed. It is a responsibility to get things right with accuracy and with appropriate fair balance, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t have a little distraction ie humour, as opposed to deliberate disruption, to the process.

Comments are closed.

error:
error: Content is protected !!