In which I ponder on the ethics of telling you about a book promotion and decide to do it.
I have written quite a bit about competencies on this blog and these past posts have attracted comments from readers. (Click on either the Category or Tag Competencies at the right hand navigation bar to find the posts.)
These posts have also attracted the attention of Korn Ferry, who, I think, own Lominger, which is the set of 67 competencies and associated tools that has swept through the public service in New Zealand. I received an email from a marketing specialist at Korn Ferry asking me if I would be interested in blogging about their current special package, in return for receiving a copy of the package itself.
I have to confess to going immediately into a bit of a spin because it meant that this little blog had been noticed enough to be approached for a deal. So I immediately saw the recognition in this approach – someone out there has noticed and thinks what I’m writing has some value.
I will reveal that my base and crass second reaction was to wonder about whether this could be a first step to monetisation of the blog (i.e. finding a way to make some money out of my blogging efforts). However, receiving four free books is not going to make me Bill Gates. Although at the price they charge for these Lominger books, perhaps it would get me closer than I expected. Either way, please don’t set Inland Revenue onto me!
My third and most significant reaction was to ponder on the ethics of this. Would I be writing an advertisement? I had visions of my blog inundated with Google Ad Words, or dangerous banners luring unsuspecting people to click on them.
Then I thought that maybe what is required is advertorial. You know the kind of thing, write an ad that doesn’t appear to be an ad – oh, that’s called PR.
Would I be required to say "this is an ad" and then promote the books? Considering how my previous posts have been critical of competencies, I didn’t think that either of these two alternatives would wash.
And then, perhaps the whole thing was a scam like all the emails I get from (apparently beautiful) women wanting to meet me, or bankers in foreign countries wanting me to move millions of dollars through my account in return for a 10% commission.
So I thought about saying no to the offer. But this wasn’t very attractive either because I don’t like to say no to opportunities too early. I like to explore them well to see how they might work out and what avenues they might open up.
So it took me two weeks of sitting on the fence to figure out what I would do. You are now reading the results.
I replied "Yes" to the offer and the books duly arrived.
The offer is a 45% discount on the following four books:
- "FYI 5th Edition" – note that most Government departments only have version 4, and my previous copy was version 4 as well. So this is the latest.
- "FYI For Teams"
- "You" which is about being more effective in your MBTI (Myers Briggs) type.
- "Broadband Talent Management" which is about coaching others.
The books would normally cost $US252.95 and under this special offer you save $US113.95.
Go to http://store.lominger.com and enter Development Gift Pack to get the discount. Happy reading!