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  • Kozmo.com was nice, but it was no MyLackey.com
  • And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    MyLackey.com email to employees

    --- Start message ---
    From: Brendan Barnicle
    To: All Employees
    Subject: THIS IS STILL A START-UP
    Importance: High


    It is now 6:45 pm and there are only 12 people in our office.
    We have 65 people that work here in Seattle. This is totally
    unacceptable.


    This company has far too much very important work to do to
    have virtually empty offices at 6:45 pm. If anyone thinks that
    everything we need to do as a company can be accomplished within an
    8 hour day, then I think they fail to understand the scope and
    complexity of our venture. Anyone harboring such illusions should
    seriously consider a career change. I am sure that I could point to
    tasks for every single person in this company that would merit
    working past 7 pm every single night.

    We have an amazing lead on an outstanding business, but it will
    not last forever and we must move faster. As some of you know, we
    are lagging behind our revenue goals. We need everyone in
    every department working every day to meet and exceed these goals.
    We have similar goals in development, sales, business
    development, marketing, operations and every other aspect of our
    business.

    This is not a bank; this is not Boeing. This is a start-up and
    we are all expecting to be rewarded for taking the risk of
    a start-up. But, there will be no rewards without
    exceptional effort.

    Given the severity of the situation, I am putting strict
    office hours into effect immediately. Until further notice,
    all employees are required to be at their desk from 8am until
    7pm, with 30 minutes for lunch. There are no exceptions. If you need
    to leave early, then you must be at your desk earlier. I am very
    sorry that we need to instill such strict guidelines. This is not
    usually necessary at a start-up and when the work ethic here begins
    to reflect that of a start-up, we can consider more flexibility in
    our work hours.

    Anyone who has an issue with this new requirement is free to
    speak with me. But, there will be no exceptions.


    Brendan Barnicle : Chair Lackey & Chief Financial Lackey
    mylackey.com
    1520 Bellevue Avenue
    Seattle, Washington 98122
  • As a college freshman in DC, Kozmo was a boon. This was long before Netflix was viable (and years and years before streaming), and even Tivo was still nascent. The nearest convenience store (I was at Georgetown) was just off-campus but it didn't stock a variety of things (including condoms since it's a Jesuit school and the school owned the property) which meant that if you wanted something you had to take a 10-20 minute hike to M street. That's not that bad, but if it's snowing out or you're just a lazy freshman it was felt horrible.

    The ability to order a DVD, some food and stuff was just amazing.

    /Still have a Kozmo bag somewhere in my stuff...
  • mattharvest: As a college freshman in DC, Kozmo was a boon. This was long before Netflix was viable (and years and years before streaming), and even Tivo was still nascent. The nearest convenience store (I was at Georgetown) was just off-campus but it didn't stock a variety of things (including condoms since it's a Jesuit school and the school owned the property) which meant that if you wanted something you had to take a 10-20 minute hike to M street. That's not that bad, but if it's snowing out or you're just a lazy freshman it was felt horrible.

    The ability to order a DVD, some food and stuff was just amazing.

    /Still have a Kozmo bag somewhere in my stuff...


    Hoya saxa you shining star.
  • Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    MyLackey.com email to employees

    --- Start message ---
    From: Brendan Barnicle
    To: All Employees
    Subject: THIS IS STILL A START-UP
    Importance: High


    It is now 6:45 pm and there are only 12 people in our office.
    We have 65 people that work here in Seattle. This is totally
    unacceptable.


    This company has far too much very important work to do to
    have virtually empty offices at 6:45 pm. If anyone thinks that
    everything we need to do as a company can be accomplished within an
    8 hour day, then I think they fail to understand the scope and
    complexity of our venture. Anyone harboring such illusions should
    seriously consider a career change. I am sure that I could point to
    tasks for every single person in this company that would merit
    working past 7 pm every single night.

    We have an amazing lead on an outstanding business, but it will
    not last forever and we must move faster. As some of you know, we
    are lagging behind our revenue goals. We need everyone in
    every department working every day to meet and exceed these goals.
    We have similar goals in development, sales, business
    development, marketing, operations and every other aspect of our
    business.

    This is not a bank; this is not Boeing. This is a start-up and
    we are all expecting to be rewarded for taking the risk of
    a start-up. But, there will be no rewards without
    exceptional effort.

    Given the severity of the situation, I am putting strict
    office hours into effect immediately. Until further notice,
    all employees are required to be at their desk from 8am until
    7pm, with 30 minutes for lunch. There are no exceptions. If you need
    to leave early, then you must be at your desk earlier. I am very
    sorry that we need to instill such strict guidelines. This is not
    usually necessary at a start-up and when the work ethic here begins
    to reflect that of a start-up, we can consider more flexibility in
    our work hours.

    Anyone ...


    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.

    People working 60-80 hour weeks at a start-up needs to be "organic"... caused by a feeling and drive of the employees who really feel that their product will be great, and do great things. Not because you get a memo saying "You will all work 11 hour days!"
  • mattharvest: if you wanted something you had to take a 10-20 minute hike


    If 20 minutes is a hike? Kill yourself.
  • dletter: Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    (redacted)

    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.



    I actually hope they all quit the next day.
  • mat catastrophe: dletter: Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    (redacted)

    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.



    I actually hope they all quit the next day.


    Heh. I actually just read the wiki entry on these bozos. I wonder how many of those 65 "employees" were actually the contractors hired to run the errands.

    Businesses that take on contractors and treat them like employees should suffer no end to their pain. Sorry, bub, but if I'm a contractor for you, then I am going to show up at 7am and work until there's no more work to do and maybe I will hang out for an hour to see if anything else comes in - 2 hours at best, but I'm not going to sit in your office all day, and unpaid, because you have a shiatty business model.
  • mat catastrophe: dletter: Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    (redacted)

    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.

    I actually hope they all quit the next day.


    As I recall, the company was already circling the drain and closed its doors a few months later.
  • mat catastrophe: dletter: Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    (redacted)

    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.



    I actually hope they all quit the next day.


    I guess I am thinking about the current environment where you want to look before you leap in leaving a job and make sure you have something in hand. In those days, anyone with any talent probably had people trying to hire them even while in the job, so, most probably did jump.
  • Yes, we know what the kozmo.com consultant thinks, but what does the consultant from zombo.com say?
  • I loved Kozmo.com, but I knew they were doomed from the outset. It's obvious. Pizza delivery is profitable because they take $1.50 worth of ingredients, turn it into a pizza, then deliver it to you for a (at least) $12 + delivery fee.

    The profit margin on a pint of Ben & Jerry's is nowhere close to that. They'd have to charge, like, $30. Which they did not do.
  • AverageAmericanGuy: Kozmo.com was nice, but it was no MyLackey.com


    Heh, I worked for a company that had an office in the same building in Capitol Hill. It was just one big room so all the interviews were done at the Bauhaus coffee shop around the corner. I had 4 americanos within 2 hours.
  • I think beer delivery to the home would be a great model, especially for a liquor store.
    I'm sure there is some law against it, and there would be wailing an gnashing of teeth because "think of the children" and "people will drive drunk" (I know it doesn't make sense, especially if sober people are delivering beer to houses, but that's MADD for ya)
    Anyway, house parties, people sitting at home drinking with their spouse that run out of beer and don't want to go to the store, whatever...it would be a in demand service I think.

    /Ran out of beer last night
    //Didn't go to store, went to bed instead
  • Generation_D: This is not a bank; this is not Boeing.


    I'm going to defend the CEO on that point: there are a lot of people that come from the lazy-B that
    * are really subpar
    * work 9-5
    * if they do know any tech it is outdated
    * solutions are way too enterprisey

    but to say that you have to be sitting in a chair and that you only have 30 minutes for lunch is bad leadership.
  • buzzcut73: I think beer delivery to the home would be a great model, especially for a liquor store.
    I'm sure there is some law against it, and there would be wailing an gnashing of teeth because "think of the children" and "people will drive drunk" (I know it doesn't make sense, especially if sober people are delivering beer to houses, but that's MADD for ya)
    Anyway, house parties, people sitting at home drinking with their spouse that run out of beer and don't want to go to the store, whatever...it would be a in demand service I think.

    /Ran out of beer last night
    //Didn't go to store, went to bed instead


    Quitter.
  • lelio: Generation_D: This is not a bank; this is not Boeing.

    I'm going to defend the CEO on that point: there are a lot of people that come from the lazy-B that
    * are really subpar
    * work 9-5
    * if they do know any tech it is outdated
    * solutions are way too enterprisey

    but to say that you have to be sitting in a chair and that you only have 30 minutes for lunch is bad leadership.


    I was at a startup at that time, and this memo was pretty much a universal l-o-l. Like announcing to the world your morale sucked hard and your business model was just about done. Both soon proved true.
  • Mr. Puck made a delivery nearly every day to one customer who ordered a DVD and various snacks. "He would offer to tip me with a [marijuana] joint," says Mr. Puck.

    And there's your market right there!
  • mat catastrophe: mat catastrophe: dletter: Generation_D: And while we're on the subject of failed business models involving same-day service from 12 years ago.....

    (redacted)

    That is hilarious... I hope that caused about 75% of their work force to quit within the next month.

    I actually hope they all quit the next day.

    Heh. I actually just read the wiki entry on these bozos. I wonder how many of those 65 "employees" were actually the contractors hired to run the errands.

    Businesses that take on contractors and treat them like employees should suffer no end to their pain. Sorry, bub, but if I'm a contractor for you, then I am going to show up at 7am and work until there's no more work to do and maybe I will hang out for an hour to see if anything else comes in - 2 hours at best, but I'm not going to sit in your office all day, and unpaid, because you have a shiatty business model.


    I went to work as a contractor for IBM Global Services in North Carolina back around early 2000, and the office manager was still in the IBM-good-ole-boys/days mode. He explained that all IBM employees gave 110% - literally, everyone worked 44 hours a week. We had an amusing dialog about it:

    Me: "That's great, I know there's some paperwork you have to do to authorize me working overtime, but I'll be happy to do so."
    Him: "You don't understand. They choose to work the extra 4 hours a week."
    Me: "Oh, don't worry about that - if you need me to do 4 extra hours, I'll do 4 extra hours, no problem, I could use the extra money anyway."
    Him: "Well, see, the other workers, they don't get paid any more, for it, they just go above and beyond to make the customer happy."
    Me: "If I was full time like the other guys, I could see that, but I'm contracting. I report how much I work to my company, and they charge IBM for the work done. If I lied and said I didn't do as much work as I actually did, I'm cheating them out of money and they could sue me for fraud. You're not ... asking me to commit fraud, are you?"
    Him: "Oh no, it's just that our employees CHOOSE to do an extra 4 hours a week."
    Me: "Okay, well, if you ever need me to pull overtime, just let me know, there's an extra form I need to fill out for that."
    Him: "... umm. O...kaayyy."

    He had an interesting mindset; had worked for IBM or Ma Bell his whole life, and still had a good-ole-boys/southern baptist mentality that was probably fine in the 50's. Among the other perks of the job, he listed; No need to wear an IBM blazer, no longer ... required ... to wear a tie every day, and you're no longer expected to attend the same church as your manager. However, don't let anyone see your wife drinking alcohol in public - you know, like no wine at dinner if you're out. Technically they can't fire you for it, but it's still sort of frowned upon.

    He also told me after I was hired that he believed I had lied on my resume, that someone my age couldn't have all that experience, despite the fact that they made me demonstrate my abilities in the interview, and he had personally called some of my past employers and references for verification.
    Like I said, interesting mindset.
  • Does anyone really think that same-day delivery of piddling crap is ever going to be profitable?
  • BarkingUnicorn: Does anyone really think that same-day delivery of piddling crap is ever going to be profitable?


    If it's "sometime today" and not "guaranteed in 30 minutes" then there's a shot. Load trucks all day until whatever deadline and roll out.
  • doglover: mattharvest: if you wanted something you had to take a 10-20 minute hike

    If 20 minutes is a hike? Kill yourself.


    You know what, you have no business being on this site anymore. Go find a new place to be a dick.
  • Don't forget Urban Fetch.
  • buzzcut73: I think beer delivery to the home would be a great model, especially for a liquor store.
    I'm sure there is some law against it, and there would be wailing an gnashing of teeth because "think of the children" and "people will drive drunk" (I know it doesn't make sense, especially if sober people are delivering beer to houses, but that's MADD for ya)
    Anyway, house parties, people sitting at home drinking with their spouse that run out of beer and don't want to go to the store, whatever...it would be a in demand service I think.

    /Ran out of beer last night
    //Didn't go to store, went to bed instead


    I don't know if it's changed in the 20 years since I moved out of state, but in California of all places, it was actually legal for liquor stores to deliver. Of course, having one of the high school kids we knew be that delivery driver led to him delivering booze to our underage asses, so I'd bet that has been made illegal long since.

    Never heard of delivery in Washington state, but given that we're just now coming out of the shadows of Prohibition with some of the progress we've made recently, I doubt that is was ever legal here.
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