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Tell us about your embarrassing business moment

Of course, no one wants to have an embarrassing business moment. Before we launched RedBalloon in 2001 we had a monumental stuff up with a test email newsletter going out to our prospective customers without approval by an external supplier. Today we have had another huge nightmare – but I wonder if and when I will stop making these embarrassing business moments – well mistakes really.

What I want to know is what is the future of email newsletters, everyone does them now, there are so so many even without SPAM – what value do they have, what role do they play?

Tell me what you think are your embarrassing business moments – what is the best and the worst – where should we go from here?

We often don’t speak about what we got wrong yet speaking about our embarrassing moments or our business mistakes allows others to learn from it.. I guess that is why we have – you will quickly learn that you are not alone. Sometimes it is something that can be easily fixed other times it will have far reaching effects. But if we live in fear of our mistakes then we will never get anything done…

“By taking the time to stop and appreciate who you are and what you’ve achieved – and perhaps learned through a few mistakes, stumbles and losses – you actually can enhance everything about you. Self-acknowledgment and appreciation are what give you the insights and awareness to move forward toward higher goals and accomplishments.” Jack Canfield

Besides a problem shared is a problem halved.

I’m not alone though… Here are some classics embarrassing business moments

“Although leadership is the hot topic on conference agendas and book tours, most people who find themselves in positions of leadership have little or no training for the role. They simply continue to make the same old mistakes.”

Reader Interactions


  1. I usually receive 300 emails a day so I make a point of not wasting time reading emails I really don’t need to. Which means I usually get half way through yours before moving on. For me, there’s just too many bits and pieces in your newsletters. While they always look good and present the contents well, I often find they tell me more than I really need to know.

    Of all the newsletters I receive the worst by far are the medical journals which are usually two pages long with way too many articles, too many advertisements and too much information about industry events that don’t involve 98% of the people reading it. The best newsletter by far that I receive would be the Boost Juice VIBEclub Newsletter. It usually features a total of 4 items – 2 new products, health information and a competition. It’s bright, it’s easy to read and I can get through it in a matter of seconds. It also contains links to other useful pages with health information or competition details where it’s not necessary for me to view them now.

    Saying that your current newsletter is much much much better than your zodiac newsletter which I remember deleting as soon as I saw how long it was. You could still cut down though. The old newsletter template (which I thought was quite funky) could be cut from 9 boxes to 6, while your current template could be cut from 6 boxes to 4.

    But hey, that’s just my opinion. 🙂

  2. Hi Naomi
    I have just been allocated the task of creating our first company newsletter – we are aiming to boost self esteem and company culture within the business and keep everyone informed (on site workers and office workers) of the happenings!
    Do you have any tips? I want to keep it simple, no jargon, plenty of pictures – I though of having a joke of the month section, and my manager said a brag board with photos of peoples achievments…
    Just thought you may have some creative important input?

  3. Hi Stacey,
    You seem to be on the right track with longs of pictures and simple language. The question I always ask myself is ‘why’ are we doing this – keep a single minded purpose. How do you want people to be different after they have read your newsletter… and remember we don’t communicate ‘to’ them we communicate ‘with’ them – how do your readers get involved?

    Also if you’re having fun – they will have fun… which means they will want more.

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