We are fortunate to live in a country filled with leading providers of just about anything. We should never have to settle for anything from the trailing provider category (Although we know of some CEOs who could actually agree to be positioned as a leading provider in the bottom 10 percent of the market).
Adding to the folly: many were “very excited” or “thrilled” to be making their announcements of anything from hiring a new sales manager for the adult diaper category, to bulking up a law firm’s litigation practice to reaching the half-way mark in recruiting candidates for a clinical trial (“We are thrilled to have reached the halfway point for enrollment in our XYZ trial…”). Imagine how thrilled they will be when they complete enrollment, conduct the trials and report results.
One dictionary defined thrilled as: feeling intense pleasurable excitement. Excited as being in a state of excitement; emotionally aroused; stirred. I am thrilled to report that use of these phrases fits into a category defined by the media as LAQs (or Lame Ass Quotes), which are usually found in the second or third paragraph of LARs (Lame Ass Releases), a growing category.
Research into news releases issued through PR Newswire and Business Wire in the past quarter turned up from 200 to 300 thrilled or excited companies a month from each service. The most common crime against clear communications: announcing a new hire. The CEO is always ecstatic because he or she has found someone that actually fits the job description (“So I am excited that Trisha (name changed) is joining our team and will lead Customer Operations. She brings a tremendous amount of telecommunications experience, a proven history of success and her energy and leadership will be invaluable.”).
A bank in California was very excited to be reporting its first profitable month after 26 months of operation. Imagine the thrills if they have a profitable quarter or, shudder, a full year in the black. Neighbors will probably call in the riot police and vice squad to quell the celebration.
CEOs, senior managers and deal makers with lazy PR people as unindicted coconspirators must lead largely dull lives when they become excited and thrilled about:
- Adding a new vice president of sales in bathroom products
- Forging a strategic alliance in selling annuities
- Introducing a new software package that provides endless seamless solutions
- A new research collaboration to reduce toxicity in new drug compounds (picture the Ph.D.s and M.D.s in their lab coats giving each other chest bumps and high-fives to celebrate the agreement)
- Finishing shooting a TV commercial on psoriasis relief (…”we captured excellent footage and are very excited to move forward into post production.”). Look for a rash of press conferences to celebrate actual airing of the commercial
- Hiring a new vice president whose appointment “will enable us to build on our current successes and advance our position as a leading edge provider of solutions to the DEF market.”
- Joining a company to do the job outlined by the recruiter (“I am very excited to be joining the team at MNO to help develop our new service offering that will enable companies and organizations with large market distribution networks to provide their customers with our PQR services.”)
- Launching a new website for an Indian casino, designed with “guests in mind” (one would hope). “We are very excited about our new eye-catching website… designed to provide an exciting, up-to-date gallery of all of our entertainment options and is dedicated to keeping our guests informed of every aspect of our fun-filled products” (Can we assume that previously the guests were largely uninformed?)
- Rebranding a company (“We are very excited to give the company a new name. NAME is a culmination of the deep enthusiasm, energy and experience that we have for our industry, our clients and our community”)
The list could go on ad infinitum (or ad nauseum as the case may be). In future editions, I plan on arousing some senses by including the company and agency names of the leading providers of PR thrills and excitement. Stay tuned!