A record of errors
In November 2012, all German utilities announced increases in electricity prices. Our company decided to take advantage of this situation and launched a massive marketing campaign, which made it clear that we were offering prices below the market average. We also heavily promoted new contracts through a new function on the company website. Nobody had made guesses as to the number of expected users who would be drawn to this service due to our competitive prices. Nor did anyone consider the type of web traffic the site had been designed for.
If you ask me, I’d say most mistakes happen because people are in a hurry or being pressured to get a job done fast. Instead of fully focusing on the job, they’ll be distracted by their worries about not getting it done on time. They may panic and fear reprisals. It’s worse if someone is impatiently waiting, and worse still if this someone is on the management board.
After receiving complaints from my clients, I suspected there was a programming error with the sensors, which are installed in cranes worldwide to ensure that loads are not lifted if they exceed operational limits. Recently, a number of mishaps occurred when cables were cut on command by the sensors, even though the cranes had not lifted excessive loads.
A longtime senior client advisor for a major German bank receives a request for the issuance of an aval contract for 975.000 KWD (Kuwaiti dinar) on behalf of a client. He reads the sum as 975,000 KWD (the equivalent of €2.5 million) and advises the Kuwaiti National Bank to issue a direct aval for the same amount to his client’s supplier. Before that, he had checked his customer’s credit line. Everything looked fine.