Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 337

The best #leaders aren't afraid to try something crazy+to take responsibility for the result. #QuoteADay #Day337 #NYedchat #EdVoice #ASCDL2L

So my next two posts are inspired by Honda.

Yes, Honda.

And Skeletor.

But it’s an interesting and a quick story, so read on.

During Thanksgiving I had the chance to see the Honda/Skeletor ad on television.  Now, if you don’t know who Skeletor is, you’re probably like 85% of the car-buying population, but there was something hysterical, engaging, and, imagine this, even a little endearing about watching Skeletor try and sell me a CRV.

I would guess that Honda took a somewhat large risk in using Skeletor as a mascot for a family friendly mini-SUV.  Skeletor is evil, he’s disturbing looking, and you don’t necessarily picture characters from The Masters of the Universe as car salespeople.

But, for me, it worked, at least in the philosophical learner/leader sort of way (sorry Honda, we already have two cars, but it was a great ad).

But, Honda’s risk-taking didn’t stop there.

Mild-mannered Honda then proceeded to “allow” Skeletor to host a #Skeletakeover of their Twitter feed on Cyber Monday.  Again, deomographic percentages might say a crazy move, but it was hysterical, well-done, and most importantly (for Honda, anyway) it got people asking, “Who is Skeletor?” “Why is he representing Honda?” and “How do I find out more?”

The key takeaway?

The best leaders (and organizations) aren’t afraid to try something crazy from time-to-time and aren’t afraid to take responsibility for whatever happens. 

Because, as I’m sure Honda will agree when considering this ad campaign, the best measure of success isn’t necessarily the “bottom line” but often how many people you get engaged in your initiative.  So feel free to try something a bit crazy every once in a while.  Even if it doesn’t work out the way you expect, you’re bound to learn from it.

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