Posted on May 14th, 2013 No comments
There’s no shortage of articles and explanations about how smartphones are causing serious focus or attention problems – but if you are prone to be forgetful or lose focus, there are a number of tools you can use with your smartphone to help combat this. For general computing, try some of these ideas…
- Timer. Are you forgetful? Does your significant other complain about your punctuality? Hold down your iPhone’s home button and tell Siri “set a timer for 35 minutes” if you need to leave. Or say “remind me at 4pm to leave the office”.
- Location-aware reminders. Every Thursday morning as I drive away from my home, around 3 blocks away my phone vibrates and reminds me to take out the garbage. It knows when to remind me, and where to remind me. And most importantly, my wife doesn’t have to remind me.
- Are you prone to getting distracted and get parking tickets? Pay your parking meter, tell your phone to set a timer, take a PICTURE of the parking code so that you can PayByPhone remotely if you have to add time when the meter runs out. This will a) avoid tickets, b) avoid you having to run to replenish the meter and c) avoid that initial service fee that comes with PayByPhone if your appointment doesn’t run into overtime. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on April 10th, 2013 No comments
Your phones are down. Phone outages occur in nearly every small business, and here are 4 ways you can reduce the likelihood or impact of an outage.
1) First, expect to have issues with your primary carrier. For decades, phone technology has enabled a single pair of copper wires to carry a huge amount of your office phone calls, maybe all of them. How old is that copper wire? Probably as old as your office building. How easy it it for someone to bump that pair of wires if they’re in the basement of your building? Very easy. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on March 5th, 2013 No comments
Try this simple exercise: pretend one of your employees changes their name from Jennifer to Jessica. How many places do you need to make that change? Payroll? HR portal? Timesheets? Job assignments? Phone list? Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on February 14th, 2013 No comments
Your best client. You know, the one that’s kind, polite, patient, appreciative, punctual, generous, understanding, and empathetic. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on January 29th, 2013 No commentsYou should brush your teeth more.You should exercise more.You should pay your electrical bill.Wait a sec. Those are all normal “should” but the electrical one isn’t. Why? Oh, that’s right. They don’t say should. They say “pay your bill or your power gets shut off.” It’s not pretty. But which of those three sentences gets results nearly EVERY time?Should is an awful word because it’s already resigned to the reality of the situation. Should knows you don’t want to do it. That’s why it’s saying “should” – otherwise it would say “I’m pleased that you’re going to be brushing your teeth every day.”
Should knows that you have choices, and by leading with an acknowledgment that you probably aren’t planning to do it, it validates your (unwise) decision.Dentists use should. Dentists stay gainfully employed knowing that you won’t floss, brush, etc.ER surgeons use “we’re operating now” – not “please carefully sign the release form and we all think you really should have this operation” – they cut (literally) to the chase. Something compelling about “you will die unless you have this operation.”
Should causes deafness. “You should….” and you stop listening.“If you don’t” cures deafness. “If you don’t do this _____, this will happen: ________”
Do you want something to happen? Avoid should. Try “need to” or “need to, and here’s why”
You should retweet this or post it on your social media sites.ARGH. What bad habits we develop!
Posted on January 23rd, 2013 No comments
You might think that name the Starbucks employee writes on your cup is so they can call out your name or avoid having someone pick up the wrong beverage from the counter.
But that’s not why they write it down. They write your name down to get to know you, to personalize the experience, to develop a relationship between you and Starbucks.
That’s not always apparent, though. The benefits are not immediate, and not “in your face” where they immediately say your name right back to you.
It might come on the next visit, or when they surprise and delight you with knowing your name when you return. Starbucks is investing in a long-term relationship with you. Are you doing the same with your customers?
Canlis, an upscale restaurant in Seattle, doesn’t give you a ticket when they park your car. They just remember you and bring your car around when you’re done with the meal. It’s relatively simple, and it’s extraordinarily memorable. I haven’t eaten at Canlis in probably 25 years. And I still remember that.
“We appreciate your business” is easy to say. But doing things that show it are where the real value lies. And when it’s done right, people will not only be impressed, but they’ll tell others.
Posted on January 2nd, 2013 No comments
Yes, all of them. No, you say, that’s going to take too long. It won’t be immediate, but just google “identity theft” and you’ll find the time is well spent.
Password managers like 1Password or LastPass can aid in this process, as they’ll sync with your various devices using services like Dropbox or iCloud. Plus, they can generate strong passwords that you really only need to copy once, rather than try to learn or memorize dozens across multiple sites. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on December 9th, 2012 No comments
The coupon drew me in. 25% off any lunch item. So I ordered my chicken sandwich and chose my side, turkey chili.
Tried to pay the woman who took my order, but she said I had to pay at a separate register. OK.
They took my name, and I went to the other register. As I’m walking over, they ask “oh, did you want that toasted?” – sure. Gave my name to the register operator, and saw the total – an extra $2.50 for the chili. No, I want it as part of the “pick 2″ big sign on the wall.
Oh, that’s only if you get a half-sandwich. Ah yes, Silly of me to miss the 12pt font clarifying that detail. Please remove the side, then. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on November 14th, 2012 No comments
Customers begin a sales process with skepticism. Their job is often to sort out the facts from the fiction, and because the salesperson’s interests aren’t always aligned with the customer, they have to often find the “cons” on their own while being deluged with all the “pros”.
One insurance company has successfully accomplished this by offering to proactively provide competitive quotes for prospects, even with the possibility of sharing competing information that will lose the sale. The result? Increased trust in that brand before they even engage with the customer. Any service professional can be effective by sharing candid information, not just positive aspects about their brand. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on November 6th, 2012 No comments
How can you prepare or prevent this?
You can’t completely prevent it, but you can prepare for it. Read the rest of this entry »