We recently had three examples from three different Very Big Publishers with Very Smart People of mistakes, or misunderstandings, or structural paralysis, that seem almost generic. All of them involve challenges that every publisher faces on a daily basis.
The first is from a publisher which is among the first to take a step that all publishers must take eventually: optimizing the metadata for their backlist. (Backlist is a topic that has interested us for a long time.) This is a mammoth challenge for every publisher of considerable size.