The 6 C’s of Leadership 2017

...study them, learn from them and put them into practice

Are you in search of leadership skills? Skills that will catapult your career to heights not yet imagined? What is the secret to great leadership?

The 6 C's of Leadership

Frankly, there is no “secret”, only a series of skills needed that will separate you from most would-be leaders who are nothing more than just “managers”.

Here Are The 6 C’s of Leadership 2017

How many do you possess?

Study them, learn from them and put them into practice. Imagine you already have all 6, good luck!

Character

Your morals and steadfastness to always “do what’s right” sets the tone. People know where you stand and what you stand for. Don’t come to this leader with some half-baked idea that is shady at best.

Charisma

You have the ability to attract, charm, and influence the people around you. No wonder you always seem to get your way. The room lights-up when you enter. You may be the other “most interesting man in the world”. (more…)

Why The World is NOT Full of Guys

...please use the correct words

Respect. We all want it, need it and deserve it. But when we use words that have “no meaning” we carelessly speak with disrespect to our customers. Why do we continually refer to “everyone” as a guy?

the world is not full of guys

Over the course of my training career I have constantly said “words have meaning”. We must speak with clear intent, understanding that our words bring life to all situations. Click To Tweet

With a few sincerely-meant words we can easily take a dissatisfied customer and turn them around, providing we use appropriate actions to match. Just as easily, we can take a content customer and, using a few seemingly innocent words, show disrespect, imply a lower status and diminish their worth.

Here’s an example that I bet most of you have encountered…

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Read How CD Baby Turns a Mundane Email Into an “Exceptional Conversation”

Correspondence from most members of the retail industry is reduced to little more than a form letter with a few “mail-merged” names; the letter can fit most circumstances and usually does. Isn’t it about time someone uses their imagination and creates a response that we look forward to read…and share?

cd baby shipping letter

Derek Sivers, who founded CD Baby in 1998, once the world’s largest online distributor of independent music, had a brainstorm. Initially his company sent out a standard automated e-mail with every order that let the customer know when the CD was actually shipped. At first it was just the normal “Your order has shipped today. Please let us know if it doesn’t arrive. Thank you for your business.”

But quickly, he felt he could do better. He spend 20 minutes and created an email, the shipping letter, which has since brought smiles to everyone who has read it and reportedly led to their largest increase in customers since.

Here’s the email… (more…)

Do All Your Touch Points Need to be Perfect?

...or, does allowing a little "customer pain" actually help?

Pursuing excellence, customer centricity and continuous improvement are obsolete; so says Sampson Lee in his 2015 article “Turn Upside Down How PAIN is Perceived in Innovating CX and Brand Management”.

Touch Points

I am glad to say that I haven’t really had many bad customer service experiences, just some that fell short of expectations or I was disappointed in. Did this cause me “pain”? No, not in the literal sense but it did show a gap between expectations and my willingness to “accept” what was not to my liking.

The most recent example came when I took my wife to a great resort spa for her birthday, just a quick overnight stay at a spa that was rated in the top 5 in the country. Everything was top notch, a beautiful property, excellent bellman & front desk service and the spa was fantastic!

The employees were so friendly and professional, we had a great time.

Now I know why they are rated so high, they deserved it…

But when most of the company is operating at such a high level, the departments that do not maintain the same level of service really stand out.

This happened with the (more…)

10 Keys to a Better Sales & Marketing Team

The best companies don’t hire sales employees and put them at a desk to “sell”.  The new “sales department” employees must first understand the overall company mission and processes by which the mission is achieved.

Keys to a Better Sales & Marketing Team

I believe that… “You can’t sell what you don’t know”. Click To Tweet

The best sales people are those that have actually done the job and come from the rank and file employees that make, service or deliver the products.  They are the backbone of any company and the ones to deliver the dream presented by the sales team.

10 Keys to a Better Sales & Marketing Team

1. Understand Your Goals

It is much easier to promote/market/sell your business and its products and services when there is a clear understanding of what you can actually provide and how your product can benefit the customer.

2. Feedback From Your Customers

Proper feedback will help determine what they desire and provide a measure of satisfaction and adherence to product specifications, capabilities and performance.

3. Marketing is Like the Bait on the Fisherman’s Hook.

That’s only the advertisement and the beginning of the journey.  The good fisherman is the customer service/support team and will quickly know if the marketing (bait) is successful. But he still must “sink the hook” and make the sale later.

4. Pre-Qualify

How do you expect to sell “the right” product or service to (more…)

What’s The Proper Amount to Tip a Waiter?

…your 11 step expert guide

American diners are a fickle bunch. We love going out to eat but when the check comes we don’t know what to do. How much should we tip? Is it 15%, 18%, 20% or more?

What's The Proper Amount to Tip a Waiter

It’s gotten so bad that many restaurant chains now place a “tip guide” on the bottom of their checks that list the recommended tip in percentage and dollar amounts. Yes, this makes it easier to figure out the totals but what do we base these amounts on?

Well it depends.  It depends on:

1.      Did the waiter greet you with a warm sincere smile?

2.      Did the waiter make you feel welcome?

3.      Did the waiter inform you of the various possibilities of food substitutions for your meal?

4.      Did the waiter make your children feel important and not like a nuisance?

5.      Did the waiter get your order correct and present it to you as advertised? (more…)

On today’s video we welcome our special guest Jeff Toister.

As a customer service trainer, advocate and author of “The Service Culture Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Your Employees Obsessed with Customer Service“, Jeff discusses his thoughts on how to improve your company’s service culture.

Topics of Discussion:
1. How do you define a successful customer service culture?
2. Why we should NOT copy another company’s service culture model.
3. Why it’s important to align every employee to the customer service vision.
4. How do you get your employees more engaged?

Join co-host Tal Shnall and me to welcome Jeff Toister.

How Bed Bath & Beyond Cares for its Customers and Drives Revenue Too

While walking into my local Bed Bath & Beyond store last week I was preoccupied with the thoughts of an upcoming major event; my daughter going away to college. A milestone, a traumatic event, a “relief”…

Bed Bath & Beyond Cares for its Customers

We had just completed all the college applications, financial aid packages, decisions on which school to choose, and dorm type. All that’s left is for her to enjoy her “last summer” as a high school student before the big jump to college, and the mountain of “stuff” we’ll have to pack and get ready for the dorm. I’m not looking forward to that part either…

Then it happened…

On a revolving rack in an auspicious location I noticed a detailed list of “what to bring to college”. There, out in the open, is exactly what we were looking for, a systematic guide of what, and what not, to bring to school.

The individual listings were classified by school with most of the major colleges and universities in New Jersey represented. This was my nirvana!

It also included the specific school address and directions, school contact and housing information and a transportation map. Great!

No longer would we have to guess if we were allowed to bring a coffee maker to her school, it was listed right there. There was no question if a refrigerator would be provided, that’s mentioned there too. And, all the 100’s of miscellaneous items needed; laundry bag, underbed storage cases, clothes hangers, extension cords, etc. were clearly listed with a check off box.

This was our must-have packing for school document – or as Bed Bath & Beyond called it, their “Campus Ready” list. This is genius!

Why is it genius? Because (more…)

Here’s The Top Reason Training Your Employees Doesn’t Work

…plus 6.5 reasons to NOT train your staff

Ah, the ever-present argument about the proper training of your employees…well, you’ll get no argument from me. Training is the key to a well-motivated, knowledgeable and efficient staff. But is THAT all what’s needed, just training?

Training Your Employees

Here are some benefits of training:

  • Training bolsters employee confidence which is then noticed by the customers = perceived better service = more $$$
  • Training can identify areas where revenue is “left on the table” and not captured.
  • A well trained staff allows management to focus on other aspects of the business and not micromanage the staff

Throughout my years in the hospitality industry I’ve sat through more “service culture” and customer service training sessions than I care to remember.

We discussed how to create a memorable experience for the customer (guest), how to empathize, how to diffuse an irate customer and when to offer compensation for poor service. We spoke about the customer’s expectations and how to match and exceed them. Another well-worn topic is employee morale and how important it is and its direct correlation to the service provided. All worthwhile topics.

But, we rarely spoke about the “elephant” in the room…

All the training in the world won’t work if the underlying issues are not resolved & removed. Click To Tweet

I once had a boss tell me, “you need to do more training, then they’ll get better. We’ll just fire those that don’t improve, it’s simple!” Great attitude boss…wonder why service is poor! (more…)

6 Leadership Techniques to Inspire a Team

Today’s guest post is from Alex of Apex Window Werks. Here he discusses leadership styles that he uses to develop and inspire his team.

Being a leader today means leading a team in a world that is constantly evolving. Whether leading a sports team, a debate team or a team in the professional working environment, finding a way to keep ones team motivated helps the group meet the end goal.

Leadership Techniques to Inspire a Team

For team members to successfully carry out their tasks leaders need to be creative in developing techniques tailor made for their group and including them into their personal leadership style.

The following 6 leadership techniques have proven to boost team moral and inspire team members to go beyond just being an employee.

Know Your Leadership Style

As a leader it is important to know your leadership style and identify whether it will work for the group you are leading. Leaders need to be open to altering their leadership and management style so that they steer the team in the right direction.

If the leader is more autocratic, and the team members work better on their own (function more efficiently under the laissez-faire leadership style), leaders should consider taking a step back so progress is made in the group but supervise, and make themselves available to give input and feedback where necessary. This way the team morale is maintained and a sense of pride for the work done can be the reward. (more…)