Your corporate communication policy is bollocks I’ve had the misfortune recently of having to deal with two gargantuan and completely terribly run clusterfucks of inefficiency recently here in moving my mothers TV network from one company to the other. I will not bore you with the details, but the process of quitting company A and enabling company B was, at a conservative estimation, 100x as difficult, and costly (to them) as it should be assuming a simple baseline of a competently run company. At the same time, I am also running my little one man games business, AND overseeing the construction of a solar farm, which involves at least 5 different companies including mine. Having all this happen at once makes for an interesting comparison, and its even more interesting to do this while I’m also reading the Elon Musk biography, with lots of discussion of Twitter/SpaceX/Tesla etc. Its no great revelation that big companies are often run badly. I think the situation has got worse, especially in the UK (or is that just the western world in general?) in recent years. We seem to have completely forgotten about free markets and competition, and the role of governments in ensuring that oligopolies and monopolies do not exploit their market position, and this has made things much much worse. Having dealt directly with both google and facebook, I can tell you both companies are incredibly obtuse, bureaucratic disasters with absolutely no idea how to do anything any more. Its impossible to communicate with them, or get anything fixed. From the point of view of a customer (in this case for ads), both companies seem 100% computer-run, with no humans at all. At any level. Running a company is about efficient communication. Companies that cannot communicate with their employees, or customers degenerate into inefficiency. The most obvious example is when something is fundamentally broken, but you, as the CEO of a company do not know about it. With my mothers TV, there was a simple mistake on their part. They had set a limit of phone call costs at which point the TV and phone would be disconnected. You could pay the costs to re-enable the account, but their website failed if you tried to pay in the first month, before the first bill. So there was an infinite loop on non payment, and non-connection. In any sane organization, there would be actual humans who would respond, understand the problem, and fix it immediately. Instead it took 3 days and about 6 hours of my time, numerous furious phone calls, dozens of emails, a complaint to the government regulator, you name it. I was not a happy customer… But me being an extremely angry customer, and therefore the complete destruction of any potential goodwill is only 1% of the cost to the company. They now have to respond to, and deal with an official complaint with a government regulator. They have tried to call me to apologize 6 times, and left messages and sent emails. This has taken them time, effort, money. In theory the regulator could fine them, costing even more time, effort, money. The fix is obvious, but unfashionable. You simply hire staff to deal with complaints. The obvious rebuttal is that this would cost money, but the cost of NOT dealing with a complaint will always be higher than the cost of dealing with one. The compounding error for large organizations is that even when their staff do communicate with customers, they are not empowered to do anything. Nobody you ever speak to on a phone call to a large company has any discretion, authority or power to do anything. They have to fob you off with excuses or use tools like long wait times, annoying hold music and no ringback, and infuriating AI chatbots pretending to be typing… all to hide the fact that even if you get to talk to a human, they cant fix the problem. My email address is cliff at positech dot co dot uk. I make no secret of it, and give it freely to people who ask. I don’t put ANY barriers between me and people who want to talk to me. Its my decision whether I reply, and some emails I do decide not to respond to, but the idea of making it hard for customers and potential customers to contact you, when you SELL things, is just insane. Amazingly, I am not overwhelmed by email, nor annoyed by it. Many, many times, I have got emails that have been VERY helpful, or profitable, that I may never have got if I tried to screen my contact with the general gaming public. One of the best sizes for a company is one person. This doesn’t just mean ‘smaller than 2’, its an actual qualitative difference. There is something special about a company where every role is handled by the same person. My game designer and game programmer and engine programmer and QA lead are all me. That means we can have a 4 way meeting to evaluate the potential of a idea while I’m making coffee. We communicate between us at the speed of thought, and there are no egos. Sometimes the game designer gets their way, sometimes the QA dude. Its all me. This is absolutely fundamental, and something very few people seem to really understand. Going from a one person team to a two-person team not only doesn’t make things much faster, it may actually make everything slower. Maybe much slower. Even if there are no egos and both people get along, and they never interrupt each other and never disagree, communication moved from the speed of thought to the speed of speech, or typing. Incredibly slow. Communication between everyone working towards a common goal is absolutely vital. The idea that people in dept A cannot talk to people in dept B is lunacy. Strict unskippable hierarchies and org-charts are nuts. In so many companies, barriers to internal and external communication are put up by managers who want to be left alone. The impact on the company’s success is colossal, but individual managers in huge megacorps are not invested in the success of the business so rarely care. It should, in theory be absolutely impossible for a single individual like me to commercially survive making and selling video games when huge companies like blizzard and epic exist. And yet here I am. I think a huge part of this is due to the huge huge gains in efficiency when a company is basically a single individual. It MIGHT be possible to replicate it with an extremely driven, loyal team of super-like-minded people led by someone who is super-inspiring, but thats amazingly rare. Maybe space/tesla are one example. So whats the conclusion? Corporate communication is critical. Its almost impossible for it to work in large companies, unless you fight hard to ensure information flows freely. If you are thinking of growing your company think very hard if thats the right decision. And communication with customers is vital. You want to hear when there is a problem immediately, so its fixed immediately. Putting barriers between you and your customers is insane.