Monthly Archives: May 2016

When Dealing with Change

Lead, Follow or get out of the Way! 

You may be changing jobs, relocating, or being asked to take on a new role where you are now. Your change may be voluntary or involuntary. Either provides similar feelings of stress and uncertainty.  Change can be exciting and change can be scary.

It is a lot like walking on ice at first. It is a natural tendency to be uncertain of your steps and fear the future. This fear can be crippling and it is often easy to play the role of victim.

I have discovered a much better choice is to be open to new possibilities and seize the high ground. That reaction gives you the choices and more power in the process.  You can choose to stay stuck in the self-pity or choose to look at new possibilities.

Life is ever evolving and we definitely are part of that process. Change is normal and natural albeit uncomfortable. When facing changes, ask yourself these questions.

·       What do I want?

·        What are the possibilities?

·        How can this turn out for the best?

·        What do I really want?

·        How can I positively affect the outcome?

·        What is it that I really, really want?

Some of the “worst” things that ever happened to me have turned out for the best.

Be proactive! Face it afraid!! Do it afraid!!! Be open and receptive without worrying about the “how.” Get out of your way and see what life has in store for you.



Filed under Leadership

Nobody Remembers Ordinary Service


I did the “drive through thing” at the local fast food place that starts with an A last week and ordered those little potato bites instead of fries with my roast beef sandwich.  (I hate their curly fries) The lady who took my order was nice, polite, and seemed to be on the ball despite the usual drive through speaker distortion and I felt that she had my order correct.

When she took my money and handed me my food and the only words she said were, “Did you need ketchup?” I should have been tipped off to the fact that my order might not be correct.  Now I know that never happens to you but it seems to happen to me quite often.  I pulled around the building and reached into my bag and sure enough…….you guessed it…I know you are shocked……..curly fries and no potato bites.

I pulled into the parking space, walked in and up to the end of the counter away from the cash register.  The drive through girl ignored me as did the front person.  Finally a gentleman from the back walked up and looked at me as if to try and speak yet no words escaped his lips.  I explained my dilemma and without a word he turned and asked the 2 ladies which of them had filled my order. The drive through attendant confessed, but offered no apology to me or Mr. Strong and Silent. He turned to the fry master (or what ever his title was) and asked him if he had any potato bites up.  He did so Mr. S & S handed them to me without wasting the breath of an apology or to ask me if I was happy.

As I drove away with fries and potato bites it occurred to me that I was satisfied, I got what I wanted; but I was not totally satisfied. They all did the ordinary. What would have totally satisfied me? I know things go wrong, orders are filled incorrectly, service is delayed, and calls get spotted incorrectly.  As the bumper sticker say “Stuff Happens” I get that.

What makes me or any of us totally satisfied , is for the person that is representing the organization that I am trading my hard-earned cash for goods and services with to care.  I expect them to look me in the eye and say “You matter to me (us), I am sorry you have had this issue and I am going take accountability for the problem and do everything that I can to make our business transaction a complete value for you.” And then either do it or make me feel that they have done everything within reason to take care of my issue. Now that is extraordinary!

The following is a statistical analysis of customer satisfaction data encompassing the findings of over 20,000 customer surveys conducted in 40 countries by InfoQuest.

The conclusions of the study were

A Totally Satisfied Customer contributes 2.6 times as much revenue to a company as a Somewhat Satisfied Customer.

A Totally Satisfied Customer contributes 14 times as much revenue as a Somewhat Dissatisfied Customer.

A Totally Dissatisfied Customer decreases revenue at a rate equal to 1.8 times what a Totally Satisfied Customer contributes to a business.

In other words the only way to compete and thrive in today’s marketplace is to provide extraordinary service on every level at every opportunity. What do we have to do to be extraordinary?
1. Make an excellent first impression. Smile, make eye contact, and make them feel welcome and valued. Take pride in how you look and dress, fair or unfair, people will form a strong opinion – appearance and how you make them feel.

2. Be friendly and personable. Be caring, confident, and genuinely interested in others. Use their name, acknowledge them immediately, keep your word, listen to them and do your best to make them feel important and appreciated.

4. Exceed their expectations. Most people and organizations in life do only what is expected of them and very little else . . . don’t let that be you.  Think of their needs and solve problems. (Before they are problems if possible.) Anticipation and execution will win the day and leave your competition behind you.

5. Put others first. Maturity is ability to make others feel significant. You will go far when you learn to place others before your own self-interests and make them feel they are the most important person.

6. Do choose your attitude. More important than your education, your seniority, your title or the money you make is your attitude.


Contact me to find out more about how I can work with you and your team to develop a culture of Outstanding service.

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Where There is no Clarity the People Stress

Imagine that it is a beautiful spring Saturday morning and you are driving through the countryside in a sporty two-seater convertible. The winding road s wide and the warming sunlight, combined with the still crisp air allow for perfect visibility.  You are relaxed, laid back in your seat and enjoying the feel of the car and the road.

Then suddenly as you round a curve, the road narrows, and you hit a patch of dense fog. Up ahead you can barely make out a figure on the shoulder of the road. What do you do?  You suddenly are wide-awake and hyper-focused, sitting up I the seat, slowing down and gripping the wheel firmly in both hands. Your state totally changes for a few minutes until your ability to see ahead of you and where are going returns.

If you had to drive in this low visibility high-risk situation for very long you would be exhausted quickly.  The people who you deal with every day are no different. If you are not sharing your vision, values and expectations in a consistent clear way every day they may be succeeding, but I promise you that burn out is just around the corner. If they are given vague instructions, unclear expectations or they perceive hidden risk they cannot perform effectively.

The bible says that without vision the people will perish. Perhaps the people perish from stress, caused by working toward a goal with out a clear path of the road ahead. Imagine building a house without blueprints, a cross county trip with out a map or playing a game with out clear rules. Chaos, stress and uncertainty would abound.

As leaders, we should share the vision and goal, set clear expectations and provide constant feedback to eliminate fear and the stress that it brings. Anything less will mean that your team is running at less than their peak performance and at risk of burnout.

Phil is one of only one thousand leaders worldwide (representing nearly 100 countries) to be trained and certified by John C. Maxwell & his team, as part of the founder’s circle of coaches, speakers and teachers.
He works with organizations and individuals to increase sales, productivity and profitability by helping them improve their leadership, sales and customer service skills. He offers workshops, seminars, speaking, and coaching on delivering extraordinary customer service, leadership, and personal development.

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