In 1933, my father opened a Sinclair service station. In those days stations like his provided a broad array of services to motorists who came to "fill 'er up", including greeting customers with a smile, pumping gas, cleaning the windshield, sweeping the floor board with a whisk broom, adding water to the radiator, checking oil and fluid levels, and offering a genuine "thank you and please come back" after collecting for the gas - which was about $0.18/gallon (around $2.50 in current dollars). All this while offering other services like engine tune ups, brake adjustments, and tire repairs.
Recently, I ran across the letterhead for Reggie's Service Station. Under the name was the tagline, "We Serve to Serve Again". That was my dad's lifelong philosophy in every business he owned and one that he insisted his employees embrace as passionately as he did. He walked the talk. He lived this philosophy in everything he did - every day!
Oh, how I long for and seek that philosophy...
Most people feel that charisma is a gift with which great communicators are born. It is often enviously perceived as a "natural ability" to own the room and exhibit a commanding presence when engaging with others.
It is quite the contrary. Like tennis, painting, photography, and woodworking, charisma is a skill that is perfected through study and practice. Charisma is the mastering of the art of engagement that draws others to us. It is developed by focusing on being passionate, present, and confident when in the company of others, whether in a social or professional setting.
Facial expression, eye contact, body language and movement, vocabulary, articulation, and elocution are critical elements that contribute to charisma. While it is true that these may come naturally to some, it still requires awareness, focus, and practice to perfect and execute.
If you are interested in learning more about how to be a more engaging and effective presenter, speaker, or...
In my work as a business coach, Customer Service remains the most critical element of customer and client retention. At the core of customer satisfaction (or dissatisfaction) lies the timeliness of the response to a complaint, concern, or need. The quicker the response, the higher the satisfaction. It's that simple.
When taking scuba lessons, I was taught to deal with certain stressful situations that required an expeditious return to the surface. The instructions delivered were four words . . . "Stop. Drop. Go. Blow." That meant to stop whatever I was doing, drop my weight belt and tank, go straight up to the surface, and blow all of the air out of my lungs on the way up. The point was to not delay and to pursue the remedy immediately.
So it is with customer service. When faced with a complaint or critical situation, it is essential that those issues be handled directly and in the most timely fashion possible. Failure to do so will cost your company money, damage your...