“Can You Be Trusted With the Test of Money?”

The “Slight Edge” of ECONOMICS says to earn more money than we spend. Something else to keep in mind about money, or revenues is that it is both a test and a trust. Money is sometimes referred to as currency. That is to say it is a current, it flows. And when we disrupt the flow, we limit the flow of revenues to us. It’s a test because we have so many choices of what to do with our money. Forgetting to save some of it and/or use some of it for debt reduction is a failure of the test.
Money is a test because we are being asked to do the right thing with our money. Save it, invest it, use some to reduce debt or pay bills that keep our lives functioning, like rent or mortgage.
When we use our income to buy vacations, buy new cars, buy too many nights out on the town, or live beyond our means, we fail the test.
Money is a trust because what we do with our money impacts so many other people, our lifestyle and our goals. When we fail the put our income into a 401k plan we violate the trust of our future. When we fail to reduce our debt we offend the trust of living within our means.
The best advice I can give to strengthen your ECONOMIC muscle is to keep a money log. For one week out of every quarter, if you feel it’s too difficult to do it every day like me, track every penny. This is not a big deal, it’s easier now than ever. Just pay with a debit card and look at your statement. Or keep all of your receipts. And, of course, there’s an app for that.
I’m continually surprised by the feedback I get from followers who take up this task. I hear things like, “I never knew how much I spent on lunch.” Or, “I was surprised by how much of my money goes to Starbucks.”
Remember money is BOTH a test and a trust.
Mark
Mark Isaac
Owner/Trainer/Author
Gorman Business Consultants
mark@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

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Quality Customer Service vs. Exceptional Customer Service

Training Tool, Free for You

 

Which are you providing, Quality or Exceptional customer service?  What’s the difference between the two? 

From Gorman Business Consultants is the leader in helping you keep the customers you have.  Our process of the ‘7 Slight Edges’ will give your entire team the skills to help ‘create a customer’ for your company. 

Please accept this FREE great training tool. 

 

Privacy Policy: Your information will not be sold or rented to any third party company and is exclusively for the exchange of content-rich training between your company and Gorman Business Consultants.

 Quality Customer Service vs. Exceptional Customer Service;

In this 25 minute audio and power point presentation you will learn the difference between Quality Customer Service and Exceptional service.  Why Quality service is more cost effective, creates a positive work environment and gives you a better competitive edge.  I’ll show you how exceptional service may actually hurt your business because it is the necessary evil.

To receive your free training tool, click & send qualitymodel@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

Here are some of my recorded webinars for purchase!

 Time Management Matrix; $197.00

In this 60 minute audio and power point presentation you will learn where your time goes.  Pin-point what are your greatest time wasters?  Identify what are the things only you can do.  And what are the things other people can do.

7 Slight Edges to Keeping Your Customers; $197.00

In this 63 minute audio and power point presentation the participants will learn the seven seemingly little things they can do to keep the customers you have and grow from the inside out.  Learn how to Ask Affirming Questions, see the Big Picture, practice good Economics, Be of Service and much, much more.

Effective Communication for Leaders; $197.00

In this 1 hour and 45 minutes audio with power point presentation the participant will gain insights to what makes an employee engaged, how to understand the employees’ competency and maturity level and how use a logical, repeatable communication tool to ensure desired outcomes.

Leading Service Teams; $197.00

In this 1 hour and 45 minutes audio with power point presentation the participant will gain insights into how to coach and communicate the service message to your customer service providers.  You will be able to paint big pictures for your team so they know they can ‘create a customer’ for their company.  Understand your team members’ maturity level and how to ensure desired, creative outcomes.

All recordings have unlimited use and come with Facilitator Notes.

 Mark

Mark@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

612-308-3065

“Stop Trying to Delight Your Customers”

If a customer has to expend extra energy to have their issue resolved, they are less likely to be loyal.  However, if the customer doesn’t have to put too much effort into resolving their issue, they are more likely to be loyal.  This according to a 2010 published article in Harvard Business Review titled, “Stop Trying to Delight Your Customers.” 

But, if you have been following me for the past ten years, whether through my blogs, newsletters, seminars or webinar, you know I’ve said this already.  And I didn’t need to survey 75,000 customers like HBR did. 

I have long said that exceptional customer service is ‘necessary evil’ we have to do it, if we don’t our competition will.  But there are three problems with exceptional service that makes it an evil. 

First, exceptional service is easily duplicated.  Think about it, if I’m your competitor and I hear or witness a service you are providing, that I’m not, can I copy you?  Sure I can.  And now, copying our competition is easier than ever, all I have to do is go to your website and surf around.  And, an unexpected problem from being duplicated is that we, as service providers, are raising our own bar.  We are setting unrealistic expectations on ourselves.  What are the services your our providing that your competition can be easily duplicated?  MORE BELOW.

 Choose one of these three great training tools.  Along with the gift, you will receive a profile form to help us give you the information best suited for you.

Quality Customer Service vs. Exceptional Customer Service;

In this 15 minute audio and power point presentation you learn the difference between Quality Customer Service and Exceptional service.  Why Quality service is more cost effective, creates a positive work environment and gives you a better competitive edge.  And we will show you how exceptional service may actually hurt your business because it is the necessary evil.

If you would like this free training tool, click and send qualitymodel@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

Privacy Policy; your information will not be sold or rented to any third party company and is exclusively for the exchange of content-rich training between your company and Gorman Business Consultants.

Time Management Matrix;

In this 45 minute audio and power point presentation you will learn where your time goes.  Pin-point what are your greatest time wasters?  Identify what are the things only you can do.  And what are the things other people can do.    

If you would like this free training tool, click and send timematrix@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

Maturity Ladder;

In this 45 minute audio with power point presentation you will learn how to assign tasks to the right person based on their level of maturity.  From there you will be able to give the best feedback to ‘grow them up’ the ladder.  All leading to a positive, mature, work environment.

If you would like this free training tool, click and send maturityladder@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

 Second, exceptional customer service can be expensive.  Too many times companies feel they have to ‘giveaway’ products or services to make apology for the mistakes we made.  In truth, if we handle the issue, and handle it quickly, the customer will return with future business for us.  We must remember to address the intellectual needs of the customer by fixing the problem and then their emotional needs by simply saying we’re sorry.

Third, exceptional service has a perception problem.  I may perceive the service you provide for me as excellent but, someone else may say, “They should provide great service, their prices are outrageous!”  Or, to me, great service is a knowledgeable service provider.  But to you, great service may be a clean environment.  If you focus your energies on one and not the other, someone is going to be disappointed with your level of service.  Try as we may, we can’t ‘reach’ everyone.  We are always going to have critics, so why spend time and money on something that has a high percentage of missing the target?

Quality customer service is the avenue to follow when considering where to put your energy to keep the customers you have.   If you would like to know the difference, send me an email for a gift of my 15 minute webinar recording giving you the details.

Thank you.

Mark

mark@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

 

Public Praise; Your Key to Positive Feedback

Now that you have effectively given the MBA to a member of your team, see past blog for steps to the MBA, whether they achieved the desired outcome or not, it’s time to give feedback, see past blog for the importance of giving feedback. 

I could write a newsletter about feedback, why managers are bad at it, why is it so important to give, but in this blog I want to write about ‘how to’ give feedback.  I don’t have the space to cover both positive and negative feedback, so I’m only going to write about positive feedback.  I’ll write about what to say when you don’t get the desired outcome later this week. 

I like to call positive feedback, Public Praise.  Because it should be done with co-workers within ear-shot so they can learn from and possibly duplicate the action.  Also, it’s a great way to build the esteem of the person receiving the praise.  Keep in mind, I’m not saying you have to be a cheerleader and embarrass the team member, but it should be done in the open. 

Steps to the Public Praise

  • First, tell the staff member what they did well and say thank you.
  • Ask, “What did you like about what you did?” Or, “What did you learn about what you did?”  The objective is to get them talking.
  • Ask,

              “What else?”  Get them to dig deeper.

              “What else?”  Asking twice will get them to look at themselves.

  • Ask, “If you were to do it again, how would you do it differently?”  You’re looking for a possible new and creative approach.
  • Finally, remind them again of what he or she did well and say thank you.

 Just like the MBA, all of the steps must be done and done in order.  Also, you must remember to ask “What else?” twice after asking “What did you like about what you did?”  The reason is, by doing this, you are making them aware of what they did, you’re getting them to look at everything they did. 

Notice that the steps are mostly questions?  The average manager thinks, to give feedback, they must do all the talking.  In reality, if you’re doing it right, the team member does all the talking, your job is to ask the questions and listen. 

In a few weeks, I’ll write about the feedback you must give when the desired outcome is not reached.  I call it, “Confronting Non-Performance.”

 Hope you can attend, “Effort & the Role of Leadership” Open Seminar coming January 18th and 19th in Minneapolis.

Now available for purchase, “7 Slight Edges to Keeping Your Customers” webinar recording.  For $197.00 you can train your entire staff.

 Mark

Mark Isaac

Mark@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

612-308-3065

The ‘7 Slight Edges’ at Work

I am struck by the commitment by companies to provide the best possible service for their customers and also, to provide a working environment to engage employees.

A local airline is putting FAITH in their Training Specialists to learn and then conduct my coaching program for managers.  A telecom company puts EFFORT into giving their managers and supervisors the soft skills as well as the technical skills.  A fast food chain practices ECONOMICS by testing my training process with few leaders, now are ready to commit dozens more.  A health care provider sees the BIG PICTURE and develops relationships with other local businesses.  A small hospital has the COURAGE to bring me in to facilitate workshops for their entire staff.  The director of the IT department for a large bank saw how his departments can BE OF SERVICE to their internal customer.  And all the participants were asking, “How can I separate my company from our competition with quality customer service?” and other AFFIRMING QUESTIONS. 

Don’t forget about my upcoming “Effective Communication for Leaders” webinar Tuesday, September 13th @ 2:30 central time.  It’s only $97 for your entire leadership team.  Can’t make the scheduled time?  For the same fee, purchase the recording. For any questions, mark@gormanbusinessconsultants.com

 

Mutual Benefit continued

Once your employees have the attitude of Mutual Benefit and the skill of Ask/Listen/Respond, you and the company will benefit in three significant ways. 

Creative Outcomes

When an employee thinks in terms of Mutual Benefits they’ll take the time to use the skill of Ask/Listen/Respond.  From there, there is a high probability of Creative Outcomes.  There will be a new and different way to do things; hopefully a better, more efficient and effective, way.  Teams that think Mutual Benefit and communicate with Ask/Listen/Respond will ask questions to the customer like, “How can we do this better?”  “What do you want us to do for you?”  And, “How can I make this process easier for you?”  But, if they don’t care about the customer, they won’t take the time to ask anything and will never find a Creative Outcome. 

Learning

Employees that understand Mutual Benefits will take the time to learn about their jobs.  The best employees never stop learning all they can about their company and industry.  Not learning makes any job harder.  When the employee understands Mutual Benefits, they will take the action to learn more about their jobs. 

Following Through

Instill into your staff some customer service rules to ensure follow through; keeping their promises.  For instance, use the ‘Sundown Rule’ to make sure your team solves your customer issues by the end of the workday.  Another rule is the ‘Ownership Rule’ to make sure a customer doesn’t get bounced from department to department.  The employee, who hears the problem, owns the problem and must solve it to the customer’s satisfaction. 

An employee that lacks the skill of Mutual Benefits doesn’t care about his job within the company, or if he is bothered by customers, he is not likely to keep his promises.  Not keeping your promises is a violation of a trust.  And for every promise broken, it takes many more promises kept, before a customer trusts you again.

The Skill of Mutual Benefits

I hear it all the time; someone will tell me they would never go to the supply closet, remove a pack of “Post-it Notes” and bring it home with them, because that would be stealing.  But these are the same people that will spend twenty minutes standing around the water cooler, with three other coworkers, and gossip about last night’s football game.  The gossiping is far more expensive to the company.

Someday I’m going to write a book about this topic and call it, “Go Ahead and Steal the Post-it’s, Then Get Back to Work!”

The employee must understand, from the manager’s coaching, there is a relationship of Mutual Benefits between themselves and the company that hired them, you do your job and the company will write you a paycheck. 

But too many employees don’t think in terms of Mutual Benefits, they think they’re entitled to the check simply by showing up.  These people don’t understand their responsibility to the company, to the customer, and to do their jobs.  But, when employees have the attitude of Mutual Benefit, they are at the starting point of genuine customer service.

Once an employee knows and understands the importance of Mutual Benefits, they can now practice the skill of Ask/Listen/Respond.  

Ask/Listen/Respond is a skill that every manager must coach into every employee.  All of the three steps must be done and done in order.  Too many people think they know all of the answers and begin trying to respond to the customer’s issues by immediately talking without asking what it is the customer really needs.  These employees like the sound of their own voice and respond too much.  Or, too many employees ask a lot of questions, listen to the customer’s needs, and then, when it’s time to make a decision; they transfer the customers’ call to another employee.  These employees are afraid to make a decision.  They are caught-up in what I call, “perma-prepare” they are permanently preparing to make a decision, they just never do. 

Once your employees have the attitude of Mutual Benefit and the skill of Ask/Listen/Respond, you and the company will benefit in three significant ways.