Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Communicating change

Today, I ate at a burger joint. Today was, apparently, also the first day that they served fancy coffee. Not just regular old coffee, mind, but fancy coffee, with faux Italian names and whatnot  Which, to be sure, is a change, and a change that needs to be communicated to the customers. For many reasons - the least not being to sell those coffees to these customers.

So. Communication happened. In the form of an explanatory folder strategically placed on the tables, containing an explanatory text. Which began talking about coffee, and then transitioned into talking about burgers.

This, at first, confused me. Then the gears started ticking. What was the aim of this communication? What fictional sender needed to be discursively constructed in order to make this communication work? What's the main theme of this place?

Burgers. The whole place was about burgers. Burger joints do burgers. The central theme is burgers.


It makes sense for them to talk about burgers. Especially when communicating change. They have a core value, and they're sticking to it. And they're now doing fancy coffee, too, in addition to this.

It is, in one word, brilliant. There is change, and there is a firm understanding that nothing will change. Those in favor will nod in favor, and those in unfavor will get the message that they're safe in ignoring the new fad.

There is, to be sure, rhetoric in all things. Even when things change.

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