Last night’s season finale of Mad Men was, by my estimation, a season redeemer. Spoiler alert…stop reading if you have yet to see it. The much discussed poster for Season 6 showing two Don Drapers seemed to be an obvious metaphor for the conflict Don had reconciling his true self and the self he had to sell to the world of advertising in exchange for success. Don cultivated a persona in the same way that he helped clients sell product. Much of this show is about Don’s struggle to come to terms with and understand who he is without compromising the good thing he has going with the ad agency. Therein lies the business lesson or, maybe more of a quandary. Is it possible to always be truthful and “moral” without compromising profitability in business? Don came clean last night and lost his job at SC&P.
To say that all companies operate amorally and only in strict adherence to the bottom line is intellectually lazy. It is possible to create a business plan aimed at turning a profit whose mission is to do good. This year at Big Omaha, Cindy Gallop of http://makelovenotporn.com/ is working on debunking damaging conventions and backward attitudes toward sex through her business and I believe her efforts will disrupt a billion dollar industry by changing the national conversation regarding sex. Other speakers challenged Google on their “do no harm” statement saying that was too low a bar and that businesses should strive to actually have a positive impact on business.
Back to Mad Men. One of the most powerful images in this dark series comes at the very end of the episode when Don takes his three kids out to see the remnants of the run-down brothel where he was raised as an orphan. The sun is shining and he exchanges looks with his oldest daughter, one of the most painfully disillusioned females in Don’s life. There is something cleansing and pure despite the crumbling Pennsylvania inner-city backdrop. Don is starting over and next year will be the final season of this culturally significant series. We know that advertising evolves into a numbers game of demographics, focus groups and analytics. We know that consumers have become more knowledgeable, with greater access to consumer reviews and information as well as more choices from which to buy. Buying itself is now something you can do in your pajamas while the coffee brews. The big question then is this; will consumers demand high ethical standards from the brands they love? At the end of the day, can companies really be compelled to act in a greater public interest if they can still sell their product regardless?
January 19, 2021
Software development is a team-based endeavor because of the complexity involved in launching a new system. Gone are the days when one developer can be point on the whole back-office software stack. It now takes multiple specialized roles to (appropriately) fulfill the software delivery lifecycle. A typical software project requires: Leadership Product management Project management […]
January 13, 2021
One definition of rot is the process of deterioration. Something that decays over time. By this standard – software rots like food in the Nebraska heat. It’s true. If your software isn’t regularly updated, it deteriorates and breaks down. Consider this – software is written to work at a moment in time…but time marches on. […]
January 4, 2021
OMAHA, NE, January 4, 2021 – In late 2020, Volano Solutions announced it has changed its name to Volano Software and launched a new website: www.volanosoftware.com. The name change was made to more accurately reflect what the company does, and the website was designed to be more informative and user-friendly to clients and prospective clients […]
June 2, 2020
According to LinkedIn technology (software) has a higher overall turnover rate than retail. With that, it isn’t a matter of if, but a matter of when. Volano has engineered a culture of “by developers, for developers” and this helps our retention. In fact, most of the folks that work at Volano have been here +5 […]
June 2, 2020
It is hard enough to build a successful business, and few want to invest time and resources into worrying about an Intellectual Property Assignment. But alas, you must do your homework. Fortunately, we make it easy for Volano customers. When asked – “Who owns the software and IP for my project?” – it is an […]
May 28, 2020
Many of us remember the grade school game Telephone. It was funny to see how a simple message would get garbled as it was passed along from person to person. But it’s not as funny when that message is a critical business requirement that will be turned into software that will power your business. Yet, […]