hope

The Passive Predicament - 4/13/21


The employee is speaking to you.  Do they have that look in the eyes like they’re hanging on your every word, like they’re processing, interpreting, and getting ready to quickly respond to your key points and questions?  Or do they have the look of somebody in the 2nd hour Read more

Regain Lost Motivation - 4/6/21


For many of us over the last 12 months, our home has also become our workplace.  Our work interaction has been 2-dimensional through the computer screen as opposed to the 3-dimensional experiences we’re used to with co-workers and customers. We are all motivated in our own unique ways.  Some are Read more

The Answer is Right, but the Service is Wrong - 3/30/21


Maggie was irate.  The gift she ordered needed to be received by the 20th of the month so she could give it to her cousin for his birthday.  It was the 19th, and Maggie couldn’t find any shipping update online, so she called the company.  The employee said “Oh!  Read more

Question Everything, but What’s the Question? - 3/23/21


The new leader joins the organization, and she decides she wants to question everything.  She wants employees to question everything.  Why have we always done it this way? Why do we continue to do it that way? Is this the best way to work? Sometimes it’s a great management Read more

The Resourceful Rep - 3/16/21


One of our clients is seeking to develop Customer Service Standards.  We’re working with them to identify those key expectations of staff that will enable the organization to deliver a consistent high-level customer experience.  One of the key attributes that this organization is seeking from its team members is Read more

Be Proactive like a Pro - 3/9/21


We constantly work with clients, encouraging them to become more proactive with customers.  Don’t just be reactive, waiting for the customer to ask questions or to complain.  Instead, go to the customer, anticipate their needs, suggest something to them. But many of us, frankly, don’t know how to be proactive.  Read more

Find One Unique Thing - 3/2/21


Many of us are not in a position to develop long-term relationships with our customers.  Our encounters are often one-time only with a customer - very brief and likely to be our only time chatting with this individual. And even though there may not be a long-term professional relationship developed, Read more

Should I Stay or Should I Go? - 2/23/21


Should I stay or should I go?  That’s not just a classic song by The Clash.  It’s also the question customers ask more and more, especially during difficult economic times. A recent study in the Charlotte Business Journal noted that 50% of North Carolina businesses are concerned with how to Read more

Optimism – A Force for Good in Customer Service - 2/16/21


Will 2021 be a better year than 2020?  I have absolutely no idea.  Maybe it would be nice to see into the future and know for certain, but I can’t and I don’t.  But as I wade further and further into this year, I can hope that the water Read more

To Assure, Ensure You Do This - 2/9/21


Vince Lombardi – famous professional football coach – became a big hit on the speaker’s circuit during his time coaching.  He applied many of his principles in football and life to business, and one of his great business quotes is:  Confidence is contagious and so is lack of confidence, Read more

2020 Holiday Poem – 12/22/20

Posted on in Customer Service Tip of the Week Please leave a comment

When in the role of customer service,
We are wired to give and give.
It’s built into our DNA.
It’s simply the way we live.

In order to give to others,
We need to find ways to give them their fill.
We need to pour empathy and openness into them.
To serve, we need to have that will.

But we can’t fill others to the point that we’re empty.
We cannot give if we’re down to the last drop.
We always need to find a new reservoir.
We need to make sure that the cracks and leaks will stop.

One of the greatest ways to refill our bucket
Is to have our share of hope.
One of the greatest ways to rebuild our energy
Is now within our reach and scope.

As you’re going through the holidays,
And you’re thinking about what is next,
Take hope in a healthier new year.
Take hope in lesser stress.

Take hope in more joys and successes.
Take joy in more rest and peace.
Take joys in a 2021
That should be better than this year, to say the least.

So, realize this is the time to fill your bucket.
This is a time to shout HOORAY!
For these holidays are a precursor
To what we hope to be better days.

Happy Holidays!

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The End of the Tunnel – 12/1/20

Posted on in Customer Service Tip of the Week Please leave a comment

Have you ever heard the expression:  There’s light at the end of the tunnel…

In this COVID-era world, it sure does feel like the tunnel is long, doesn’t it?  It sure feels like this is not a light that we’ll be at in 2 seconds after the train goes another 200 yards.  But the fact of the matter is, when you’re in a tunnel and you see light, no matter how dim the light is, it shows that there is an opening.  It’s irrefutable that the closer you get to the end of the tunnel, the bigger the light appears, and the brighter the light shines.

Same is true for when we’re going through difficult times at work.  Whether we were furloughed, lost clients, lost jobs, gained responsibilities with no additional support, or had to work from home without the best equipment to do so, COVID-19 has created its own tunnels.  But the idea of the light at the end of the tunnel is the concept of hope.  And if we focus each day on our difficulties and challenges, sometimes we can lose sight of that which gives us hope.

I was working with a client recently, and we talked about the importance of having a long-term vision, of having a goal, of having some collective rallying point that we could all move toward together.  That gives us hope.

I was listening to a Ted Talk last week, and the speaker talked about the importance of leaders being servant leaders, and he described servant leadership through a definition of what service to others means.  An interesting point he had was that if we have vision of what tomorrow will look like, it helps us to get through today.  That gives us hope.

So, a suggestion or question or a challenge I have for you as you go through your own personal or professional tunnel is to identify:  What is your goal? What is your vision of a more pleasing or productive or joy-filled tomorrow?

Take time to write it down, because it’s much easier to see the light at the end of the tunnel if we figure out what “light” means to us.

Find your own light at the end of the tunnel.

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Hope is a Powerful Word – 4/7/20

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It was a typical daddy-daughter conversation. The two were just chatting about whatever a father and an 8-year old discuss, and the father decided to ask his daughter a question. What is your favorite word?

With no hesitation, the girl said “Hope.”

“What a great word!” the father replied.  He was happy with his daughter’s answer, and it was an encouraging sign.  Hope is an important word to her.

And the word Hope seems even more important, even more powerful when you look at some of the antonyms of Hope:  Despair, doubt, fear, distrust, discouragement.  Any word that is the opposite of those has to be pretty positive and pretty powerful!

Hope is not just an important word to an 8-year old, but it’s a powerful word for any of us if we understand what it means and we apply it to our daily lives.

As people who work in business, as people who serve others, we need to realize this word’s important to customers, as well.  There’s a level of uncertainty implied when using the word Hope, and I know in a lot of situations with customers, there’s no guarantee of what the next step will look like or what the result will be; there’s no certainty about whether some things will work or they will meet the timeline or happen in an exact way.

But it’s powerful to say to customers that We Hope this addresses your need. We Hope that this will resolve your issue. We Hope that you enjoy the experience. We Hope that the outcome will be what you need.

When we use Hope in this context, we are positioning ourselves on the customer’s side. We’re not just conveying what could happen, but we are conveying to the customer that we desire what they desire, that we want what is best for them.

The next time you explain a step or a process or what’s going to happen next to a customer, if you have any uncertainty about what will transpire or the impact it will have, convey some Hope.  Show that you not only know your stuff, but show that you want what’s best for them.

Let the customer know of your Hope for them.

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