Seek Little Disruptions

With the World Cup party bouncing along in South Africa, I caught a documentary on the Beeb about how their 70s and 80s overseas rugby tours were disrupted by anti-apartheid activists in the UK, Ireland and New Zealand. Their achievement was to hasten the fall of the oppressive system.

What was startling was whilst the headline grabbing events were the mass pitch invasions by several hundred people, such as Hamilton’s ‘Operation Everest’ which successfully stopped one tour’s first match, the protagonists thought the smaller, unpublicised disruption caused greater problems for the tour organisers.

My favourite example was sneaking a girl into a hotel to glue up all the doors of the players rooms. Another, more sinister tactic was to have one person run onto a pitch scattering glass on the grass.

When we’re faced with dominant competition on a campaign, the tendency can often be to think of the big event that’ll swing the initiative our way. Yet following these hardy souls example would suggest a few carefully thought out ploys on a tiny scale could end up being more effective.

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