Archive for the ‘Training’ Category

Feeding the fly on the wall

October 5, 2014

fly on the wallIn many ways we are all a little curious..

What are they really like, what is she like, are they nice people, what is the spirit of the place, what do they really believe in, is it all about profit, what does he do in his spare time, what experience does she have, what happens behind the scenes, what is their process, how committed are they to results, what are they passionate about, what is it like to work there, what are the people like that do the real work that we never get to meet?

At times we would love to be a fly on the wall to see first hand what the real story is so that we could really get a sense of that person, that business, that organisation – can we believe in them enough to trust them and maybe even do business with them?

Next time you tweet, post on Facebook, write a blog post, publish a photo, update your bio or post on LinkedIn think about that fly on the wall and feed him well!

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Contact me if you are interested in the Power You online reputation programme which I will be starting soon in Dublin and Cork:

Fuzion offer Social Media Consultancy and Training in Dublin and Cork

One complaint …two very different replies

June 28, 2014

Handling complaints

Initially I was reluctant to complain but I felt it was necessary. From what I was told I believed we were really hard done by, we received some really bad treatment and if I just let it go the same would happen again and again.

I was raging and I felt I had to do something to address this situation.

I felt it was really important to address what I felt were serious issues so I wrote a strong complaint email outlining all of my concerns to the person involved.

Reply number 1

The person I wrote to handled the situation perfectly (even if he felt like shooting me !)

He called me, assured me that my complaints were not valid but wanted to hear what I had to say because what I had complained about was very serious and he wanted to get to the bottom of it.  We had a rational conversation, he listened to my grievances and I listened to his replies. By the end of the conversation we hadn’t solved everything, all of the issues hadn’t disappeared but he understood why I felt annoyed and aggrieved and I appreciated that I was listened to.

I was raging when I complained but now I had calmed down because I was listened to.

Reply number 2

Because it was a serious issue my man sent a copy of my complaint email to his boss.

While he was busy trying to contact me to try to sort out this issue his boss was busy with a different approach.

Instead of taking my complaint seriously and wanting to listen his boss sent an angry email responding to me.

Effectively it read “How dare you make any such accusations about us and how we do our business. You are unprofessional to have done such a thing and never dare to complain again” did I feel now?

I was raging when I complained but now I was even worse.

His boss had zero interest in what I had to say, denied everything, enquired about none of the circumstances that led to me complaining and instead of treating me with some degree of courtesy and respect and wanting to genuinely listen a choice was made to attack.

This situation was really interesting as we had two different individuals taking quite a different approach to dealing with a complaint.

No one likes to receive complaints but we need to treat them like gifts, listen and learn and then deal with them in a way that diffuses the situation instead of making them even worse.

In my scenario this ‘boss’ needs to take a few lessons from the staff member ..

How you handle complaints is a critical part of maintaining the Reputation of both you and your organisation.

Defuse, don’t inflame

Greg Canty

Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion who offer Marketing, PR and Graphic Design services from our offices in Dublin and Cork


Doing the small stuff great

November 18, 2013

Kerrie O'CallaghanSomeone has to answer the phone and someone has to let visitors into the building and greet them as come into the office.

This isn’t rocket science but at the same time it needs to be done right. You would hope that the person with this responsibility would carry out the task in a pleasant and friendly manner – after all, it is often the first impression that anyone would experience of your business.

We’ve been really lucky down through the years in that all of our team are pleasant and friendly and will give a really good impression of Fuzion.

The primary responsibility for answering the phone (we all do it by the way) tends to lie with the ‘junior’, the person who is newest to the team. Initially we find that the newbie is more than happy with this role but after a while they do want to feel that they are progressing and that this task is moved onto someone else.

While everyone who has worked with us has been great at that ‘hello, meet and greet‘ role we had one person who really stood out; Kerrie O’Callaghan.

Day after day we had people on the phone or who had come for a meeting specifically commenting about how special their greeting was.

This wasn’t an isolated incident but an absolute trend – she did this important, junior, simple but yet important task incredibly well.

Not surprisingly the hugely talented Kerrie, who did everything with 150% enthusiasm, progressed quickly and went on to do every task incredibly well but unfortunately for Fuzion she had the emigration bug and is now enjoying huge career success down under.

It’s funny how someone who does the small things great ends up also doing the big things great..

Kerrie, we miss you!

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion are a Marketing, PR and Graphic Design agency in Ireland with offices in Cork and Dublin

Punching in Time

October 25, 2013

Bored at work

I gave two social media training sessions on consecutive afternoons this week to different groups from the same organisation.

Before the session began on the second afternoon I asked the organiser if there would be a coffee break – we had a lot of ground to cover and the previous day there was no break, which made it a tough three hour session for everyone concerned.

No, just keep going” she told me “everyone would prefer to finish up and leave as soon as possible

That’s strange ….

It was only then it dawned on me – the attendees were taking the course as part of their continuous development, which is required as part of their qualification. This is standard practice with a lot of professional bodies.

I asked a few questions at the beginning of the session to warm up the group and to establish exactly how much they knew about social media – not a whole pile as it turned out …this was going to be a tough session!

OK, we’ll all here (I had driven two hours to get here) so lets get stuck in and make the most of it..

Willie Sutton, The Famous Bank Robber

Willie Sutton, The Famous Bank Robber

I dug deep, I gave the session everything I had – I told them stories, I gave them examples, I kept the session as light and lively as possible, I related the topics to their jobs, I showed them how they could use it to win new business, I showed them how it could help them to get closer to their clients.

I even told them about the famous Irish/American bank robber, Willie Sutton!

They were a nice group and bit by bit I seemed to win over some of them; some of them were engaged in the topics and they were asking me questions and at least there were a few interested, nodding heads.

I drove on and before I knew it I realised it was 5:05 pm and I had ran five minutes over time.

“Ok guys, I have about 15 more minutes to go in order to finish the session. I’ll continue if you wish but if anyone wants to leave, I won’t be offended”

I was given the green light to continue but a few got up to leave – before I knew it I was left with about a quarter of the attendees. I continued with the session but I must admit that I was disappointed that more did not stay back.

The few that stayed were really appreciative that I punched in the extra effort and a few stayed back to ask me questions.

I packed up my things and headed to the car park to face the two hour drive back to Cork.

For two afternoons we all just punched in time …. they were there because they had to be, and I was there because they had to learn something and it may as well be social media.

While I was paid well for my time and I hope I did teach the few who wanted to learn it just felt pointless and I felt empty.

Life is way too short to be just punching in time.

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion offer social media consultancy and training in Ireland from our offices in Cork and Dublin

Taking a Fountain Pen to your Social Media

October 7, 2013

fountain pen & social media

I was presenting to the team of one of our clients this week about how they could use social media best for their business.

At my sessions before we look at any of the social media tools I do this simple exercise by asking the group a question “What are the characteristics of  people you like to do business with?

The group give me a list of characteristics – Now, take all of that into account and apply it to your online behaviour and you will be really effective.

During this part of the session I noticed the younger members of the team had glazed looks across their faces ….what is he talking about, I thought this was a training session about social media?

Social media isn’t about technology, it’s about how you use it to connect and interact with people.

The older experienced members of the team got what I was saying immediately and one of the most senior in the group gave me an incredible example of how you apply old world values to new world technology:

When I spot online that a company has won an award or has experienced some other good news or when I see someone has been appointed to a new role, I congratulate them

How do you congratulate them” I asked.

“I write them a personalised handwritten note on my own notepaper using a special fountain pen and I post it to them”

Wow, that’s so simple but it’s genius – what a way to stand out

Making social media work?…..take all the stuff you are great at already and apply it online

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion with offices in Cork and Dublin in Ireland offer social media training and consultancy services

Barack Obama and his lesson in Social Media

August 11, 2013

Barack Obama and Michelle

I probably show too many slides when I give my social media courses.

I always try to communicate my points with visuals using as few words as possible. At all times I will try to avoid slides with lots of text – I get bored with them so I’m sure anyone reading will do likewise.

My usual courses run over either two or three sessions and I normally try to leave it at least a week between sessions so that students and clients can practice in between sessions and get the most from the training programme.

The big challenge is when I am asked to cut the course into one session – this is really tricky as I have to do a huge “cull” of my material to come in at the required time and still cover the ground sufficiently.

I hate losing slides as all the material is designed to make a specific point, so inevitably valuable material gets lost.

There is one slide above all in my presentations that is precious and if I had a situation whereby I had the time to show only one this would be it.

I love this particular image because for me it sums up the magic of social media and teaches a huge lesson in how to use it.

I was asked to make a presentation to Dublin Chamber about the use of Twitter for business and it happened to coincide with the results of the last US election. Due to other commitments the night before I had to travel from Cork early in the morning to get to Dublin for the 7:30am presentation.

Like the rest of world I was intrigued about the result so the first thing I did when I woke was to check twitter on my smart phone and this is the tweet I saw.

This Barack Obama tweet was the most retweeted of all time – even at 4:19 am our time, it had been retweeted 475,000 times.

Why do you think I love using this tweet so much?

  1. It demonstrates how Twitter is now the first port of call for breaking news
  2. It demonstrates the shift from Facebook to Twitter – During his first Presidential campaign he was not using Twitter, it was all about Facebook.
  3. This medium was how he chose to communicate to the outside world that he had accepted he had won the presidential race
  4. The message is really simple and concise (often the best way to use social media)
  5. The picture he chose to accompany the tweet demonstrates the biggest social media tip of all, much better than I could ever explain it

The Picture!

Four More Years

Why is this picture so powerful?

Cleverly he didn’t show a picture of himself in a suit with all of his team – he chose a picture of himself, eyes closed, without a jacket, with his sleeves rolled up hugging his wife in a loving embrace.

The President knows instinctively that showing himself as human, as a family man, even slightly vulnerable is the way to connect with the majority of people and this is a winning formula.

A great way to win on social media is by allowing yourself to be human, personal and even vulnerable at times.

People are intrigued by people and even if you are running the most boring business in the world you can bring it alive on-line by interacting and showing people who you are, what you are all about and giving them a chance to get to know you.

Social media provides you with that opportunity – grab it!

Greg Canty is a parter of Fuzion

Fuzion provide Social Media Consultancy and Training in Ireland from offices in Cork and Dublin 

Jobbridge and some very reckless loose tongues

May 30, 2013

I couldn’t believe what I was reading on twitter..

Jobbridge rant

Here was Pat Phelan, a self professed “good guy” (from his own twitter bio: @patphelan: CEO @TRUSTEV, from a long line of Citog’s, friend of Bill and Bob, hates bad coffee #happy #goodguy) having a wild and totally unfounded pop at me/Fuzion trying to create a job opportunity utilising the JobBridge scheme and take another careful step forward with our business.

I was amazed that someone so prolific online could be that careless and loose with his opinions and make such a reckless and damaging accusation – I don’t believe Pat knows the first thing about Fuzion. He certainly has never been through our door and has never had dealings with any of our team.

I took issue with him about what he was tweeting – he clearly has issues and an opinion about Jobbridge but has no right to throw muck at Fuzion.

Fuzion and Jobbridge – for the record:

Jean was the first person that we brought in as a PR intern. She was an extra person on our team and once the period was up we were delighted to give her a full time job. We then added Aisling to our Dublin team and after some initial training and some relevant experience under her belt she was poached by Edelman PR. We replaced her with Niamh who will also be made full time – again she was a raw graduate who has now clocked up valuable experience.

The advert that you saw us tweeting about in the above post is with the intention of trying to extend the team even further, which is risky business in the current climate. Through incredibly hard work and with the help of the Jobbridge scheme we have been able to add new members to our team all the way throughout the recession – we have never reduced anyone’s wages either, which if I say so myself is quite an achievement.

That is 3 new jobs in Fuzion – the Jobbridge scheme has allowed us to accelerate our expansion and create jobs and provide valuable experience for people.

We have also added other members to our team outside of Jobbridge.


I then came across the Scambridge website – their rationale for creating this dedicated website (fair play lads with your effort at #positivity) is stated as follow ” The Scambridge website and campaign was initiated after we received an overwhelming response to the article below by Socialist Party / United Left Alliance MEP Paul Murphy which was published on the website”

I will admit that from my experience someone, somewhere will always take advantage of any initiative, which can wreck it for others – some employers will exploit and take advantage but surely don’t tar everyone with the same brush – this scheme in my view is a win/win.

Even more Twitter abuse

I then found myself taking even more abuse on twitter about our recruitment drive:

I find some guy called Squid (lovely name) @squidlimerick taking a pop at the same advert “@GregCantyFuzion using a scheme that discriminates against people with certain disabilities. #jobbridge

This gets better …I am not actually trying to create a job but I am apparently discriminating against people with disabilities. Mr Squid, when you get a chance please take a peek at some of the successful work we have done for charities in Ireland.

And then I find another really prolific social media guy on the 28th May telling people to start clicking on the Google Adverts of companies who are taking people on through Jobbridge – thanks Damien..was that a pop at Fuzion?

Damien Mulley rant

Damien Mulley: “I’d never advocate doing this: Googling Cork companies that use JobBridge to avoid paying staff. Then clicking on their ads. Clickity”

Why would you put out such a tweet? 

So Fuzion are exploiting, discriminating and we deserve to be financially punished for our attempts to stay positive, expand our business and use a legitimate scheme in the spirit it was designed.

My head is spinning at such begrudgery, cynical, defamatory and financially damaging attacks – this is some of the stuff I really hate about certain people.

Thankfully not everyone is like this and I for one will hang onto my outlook on life, drive on and try to keep having wins and Yes, create new jobs and give people valuable training and a start they may not have had otherwise.


Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion are a Marketing, PR and Design firm with offices in Cork and Dublin

Murphy’s “When it Rains it Pours” and other Freebie Guilt

May 26, 2013

Murphys, When it rains it pours

Both myself and Jonathan received our reminder at the same time on our phones while working in the office..

You have one day to redeem your free pint of Murphy’s

This is part of the very clever “When it rains it pours” campaign being run by Murphy’s. It works in a really simple way – you register for the APP and when it rains the kind brewery give away a thousand free pints!

When you log onto the APP you claim your pint and you are then given four days to redeem your free pint.

The free pints are available from participating pubs and the APP gives a listing of pubs as well as a convenient “pubs near you” guide. You reclaim the free pint by showing the barman your phone and they give you a unique code that you enter on your APP.

We are both Murphy’s drinkers, it was late on a Friday afternoon after another busy week so why not!

On the way over we had a chat about “free” stuff and how it makes you feel..I always feel like a skinflint when I’m not paying for something.

I feel mean and I feel like an inferior customer when I’m not handing over money. I feel strange when I hand over a discount card and I even feel slightly awkward when producing a voucher to pay for something in a restaurant. Whenever I claim “free” stuff or I end up using a voucher I always feel I should buy something extra so that I don’t feel as bad!

The last time I tried to use the APP in a bar that was listed in the scheme they told me they knew nothing about it. Embarrassing!

As we were ordering our pints we had our phones armed and ready and we tentatively asked the barman if they were doing the Murphy’s scheme …”sorry we don’t do that here“. Ground…open up and swallow me now!

Already feeling like a skinflint and a little red faced, I just paid for our pints and decided I wasn’t going to use the APP anymore – its just too embarrassing.

The initiative is a really clever one that should be great at building customer loyalty and one that also helps to recruit new customers. Due to poor execution (Sorry Heineken – get a sticker or POS for participating pubs and make sure the staff know about it it – make sure the pubs listed on the APP are actually participating) it instead just becomes a phone gimmick that runs the risk of making customers feel bad.

I’m sure this was a million miles away from the great original intention when the scheme was devised.

With any voucher, scheme or discount initiative you are using in your business it’s important that the execution is simple and efficient, your team are fully informed and there is no risk that a customer is left feeling guilty, inferior or with a big red face!

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion are a Marketing and PR firm with offices in Cork and Dublin.

Snap into it

May 17, 2013

Anyone, anyone, anyone?

Snap out of it” I had to tell myself.

I do a lot of social media training and consultancy both directly for  clients and as part of organised courses for the Enterprise Boards and the Digital Marketing Institute.

I use a suite of materials to deliver this training including some very detailed notes that cover the whole area including blogging, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and some of the other emerging platforms and trends in social media.

In the last few weeks I have found myself delivering a huge volume of training and on this particular day I found myself delivering a module to a client group in the morning and a similar programme in the evening to a group of SME’s as part of training for one of the Enterprise Boards.

Facing into delivering the same material on literally the same day and feeling really tired my motivation level had dropped.

I started to question myself as I drove to the hotel:

Was I getting bored with my own material?  

Would I be able to deliver a good session?

I was wallowing ..

Hold on (big conversation with self!)…you have been crafting your training materials for a few years, you have continuously improved the programme, you not only understand the material intimately but you know how to deliver it in a way that keeps the group engaged and learning – Besides you know you are passionate about this whole area.

This group of SME’s have signed up for the programme, they have given up their evenings to learn about something that could make a big difference for their business and you know you can show them how, in a really practical way.

After giving myself a few virtual slaps in the face and a big kick up the bum I managed to change my gears and open that door – “who wants to tell world about how great their business is?

We had a great session fact it was the best reaction to a session that I had in the last few weeks and after it I was buzzing.

What you get from any group at a meeting or a presentation is often down to what you bring in the door with you ..your frame of mind, your attitude, your belief, your energy and your enthusiasm.

Snap into it ..

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion with offices in Cork and Dublin offer social media training and consultancy in Ireland

Looking after the triangle?

September 9, 2012

Skyscraper workers

He was a really great sales rep working for Guinness out of their Cork office. He had been in the job for a number of years, was very efficient, very intelligent, very successful and was quite popular with his customers.

He was a great asset to the company with his knowledge of the local area, which was a big deal to Guinness as it was very competitive with both Murphy Brewery and Beamish and Crawford located in the city. In his role he would have had a lot of liaison with the various brand teams in Guinness.

This was probably the most competitive patch for Guinness in all of the country. The sales structure in Guinness consisted of sales reps, there were nine regional managers, three divisional managers with an overall Commercial sales director.

As he was highly rated a lot of pressure was being put on him to look for a promotion and move up the corporate ladder. Any promotion would have probably meant a change of location. To most of the team this promotion opportunity, with more seniority, more perks and a bigger pay packet would have been a godsend – our guy had no interest, he was happy in Cork and loved what he was doing.

When this rep’s name came up in conversation in management circles there was always a sense of a “black mark” and a little cloud of disappointment against him because he wasn’t seen as being ambitious enough.

My Triangle Theory!

Triangle Theory

At the widest point of the triangle there are lots of workers. Some of these are ambitious and push themselves up the triangle into more senior jobs with more responsibility.

Above them are even more senior managers and the business owners – at the very top of the triangle there are a select few who earn the big money, are adept at corporate politics and can handle the responsibility and pressure at this level.

Often these guys and gals will have sold themselves for the job, made the big personal sacrifices, possibly relocating themselves and their families and made work their ultimate priority.

For the triangle to work best we need satisfied, happy people at each level – for those who want to push upwards there are opportunities and for those who are happy with their lot they can stay doing what they hopefully enjoy doing.

Isn’t it better having lots of happy sales reps than a bunch of unhappy sales managers?

Sometimes you have to let the Triangle look after itself …

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion

Fuzion are a Marketing & PR firm with offices in Cork and Dublin