Big news in public broadcasting as the Ford Foundation has announced grant recipients: PBS, NPR, and other related entitites. PBS has started a new fund, called the PBS Foundation, that's been set up to capture wealthy philanthropists who wish to support them.
Know why they did this? Because when Joan Kroc (McDonald's) decided to start parting with her millions, NPR came away with $236 million, while PBS got nothing. The reason? When advisers to Mrs. Kroc contacted PBS to inform them of her charitable wishes, all they got was an automated answering system and not a live body. After two attempts they gave up.
How much business is lost because of this lack of personal contact when stations and companies are called? I'm sure everyone reading this can relate to the frustration of trying to get through to someone you want to do business with, entering last names, pressing pound, being diverted to the wrong person's voicemail, and eventually just throwing in the towel.
Moral of the story: live people, customer service, and the human touch. It's still how business is done.