Tag Archives: motivation

How to’s of good customer care

 

In the last post I wrote about staff not taking initiative when a customer has a problem, of following a policy or procedure. ‘Company rules are…’, this is our policy on complaints’, ‘please read this and write into our head office’. The latter often heard at airports when the passenger with the problem wants and possibly needs a result – now.
An unhappy customer becomes impatient and is frustrated, they can get louder than usual (and don’t always realise this). They no longer care about rules and procedures, ‘gimme a result – now!’. Telling them what to do is a red rag to a bull. The worst case scenario is that they will rehash old wrongs.
And what do companies and those who train people in customer service do? They teach employees to be calm, to say phrases such as: ‘if you shout at me I will terminate this call,’ ‘don’t raise your voice at me.’ Such actions merely light the fire under the potentially explosive situation. Even if the customer appears to physically walk away, they will remember. They will remember every single thing you and your organisation ever did wrong and the experience will imprint on their memory and they will tell other people.

Two solutions – as a customer it really helps to say ‘I’m sorry to bother you, but could you help me please.’ This is so disarming to most people they will help you. Even the most intractable and jobsworth people will listen and often point you in the direction of a colleague who is known to be helpful. Taking on some of the blame yourself really helps. It might not be what you really want to do, but it can help.
When you’re providing the customer service, being aware of how the customer is reacting using appropriate LAB Profile® Influencing Language is really appropriate, useful, customer friendly and will get you repeat business (at times there are customers however who make their own completely internal decisions and cannot be retained – they are a minority).
The customer knows he or she is right, it helps therefore if you are in customer service to get the aggrieved customer to listen to and understand you, start where they are – ‘I know this must be really awful for you ………..,’ ‘you may want to consider’, ‘this may be in your best interest,’ ‘may I make a suggestion?’
They want you to break the rules for them, your policies and procedures are not of the slightest interest to them. They want you to do something now. And you might well be surprised to find that at times when you’ve agreed that the situation is terrible, and used some of the LAB Profile Internal Influencing Language you may want to consider, this may be in your best interests, may I make a suggestion?. You might be surprised if you say to this upset customers, whilst I can’t get you on a flight right now, I can get you a meal to begin with (and let them know you’re not supposed to do, it’s breaking the rules just for them but you’d like to help) and I can arrange for you to use a phone privately and I can locate your luggage and I can help you to find some accommodation. Then it’s highly possible that the upset customer will calm down and will listen to you and later will let everyone know how well their problem was treated.

Don’t just believe me, try it out for yourself or ask me for some info or clues on how to find out more about this. There are tools and a tried and tested methodology.

Rosie O’Hara is one of the UK’s foremost Trainers and Consultants of the Language and Behaviour (LAB) Profile®, Words that Change Minds. Her background is in mechanical engineering and the German language – more information on uses of the LAB Profile® for Team Building, HSE, Management, Negotiation, Market Research, Recruitment and in Executive Coaching and more contact Rosie on 07796 134081, 01224 900748, or 01309 676004 or take a look at the website click here

The how to’s of poor customer care

Anyone reading this will recognise themselves in either having been on the receiving end frustrationof this, or having had customers, clients, clients, delegates complain about this (in this case you might perceive the other person to be wrong).
This is not based on one particular case; rather it’s a summary of many different experiences, many of us will have had. Ever been somewhere where your needs are largely ignored because staff is getting things done’? Clearing tables, looking busy behind a desk or counters etc? The person you would like to help you or take you seriously is too busy focussing on the task rather than the person?
When as a customer you are unhappy, no one takes the initiative to put things right. It’s more the case that it seems too much trouble, or our procedures won’t allow that (airlines are good at this).
The member of staff of whom you expect help behaves as if you are just a downright nuisance. Sometimes they make the ‘right noises’ but then later you discover they did nothing? They say they’ll ‘pass the message’ but they don’t.
They repeatedly tell you what they can’t do, without offering any alternatives? An example of this and the previous question. We had a training room booked for 7 people on arrival there were twenty seven chairs in said room and two large tables (no tables required). We asked for the tables and twenty chairs to be removed. We were told ‘we have nowhere to put them,’ and asked ’are they really in your way?’and then ‘it makes it easier for us for later.’ I was told I was being unreasonable in my requests.
The staff whoever they are follows a set procedure, ‘read our customer policy’, ‘complain to our head office’, ‘I can’t do that for you’.
In terms of the Language and Behaviour Profile this translates as – Things, tasks, objects are more important than People – who pays the wages, affects your bottom line?
Staff are reacting – they will respond, so they don’t totally ignore you, but they are unwilling to take an initiative.
The staff and often company behaviour is that they believe that anyone who does not fit their expectations is completely out of line and odd.
These are people who would rather work alone, a common hiring error – companies ask for and hire people who can work ‘independently, at their own initiative’ – this leads to people whose preference is to work completely alone, i.e. in a darkened room with absolutely no customers around to bother them. Customers disturb them, get in the way of the things they have to do, keeping the place tidy, neat, looking good, and making life easy.
Staff only notice what is wrong or can’t be done in respect of the customer or client,
The staff are focussing on a process, rather than a service. On a linear progression that has no time, room or facility for dealing with complaints. The problem with this process is these people who have been hired to follow this process are people who once they have started, they cannot stop. Hell mend you if you interrupt them. They must get to the end of the process this is how they are made.
Recognise some of this in customer service you have received, or customer complaints you have had?

Next time ways to deal with this – from both angles

Rosie O’Hara is one of the UK’s foremost Trainers and Consultants of the Language and Behaviour (LAB) Profile®, Words that Change Minds. Her background is in mechanical engineering and the German language – more information on uses of the LAB Profile® for Team Building, HSE, Management, Negotiation, Market Research, Recruitment and in Executive Coaching and more contact Rosie on 07796 134081, 01224 900748, or 01309 676004 or consider the information on this website here

 

How to Plan and Prioritise

Eisenhower was a very astute man.  And did you know that he came up with the hand in papersUrgent/Important Matrix before Dr Stephen Covey? I didn’t, until I was reading the ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) magazine Edge.

Eisenhower said ‘An intellectual is a man who takes more words than is necessary to tell more than he knows.’

The Urgent/Important Matrix is about using time effectively, not just efficiently, and in my experience the more effectively you use time the more efficient you become.

In this day and age there just never seems to be enough time. Is this really true?

How often have you taken time out to ‘Stop and Stare’? And perhaps realise what you are doing is getting you nowhere. We’re anxious, we can’t concentrate, everything gets in the way, and then, we simply blow. We tell ourselves that we can do so much because we have so many ‘labour saving’ devices, mobiles, PCs, laptops, we can be contacted anywhere at any time.

In spite of all these gadgets and online calendars (that everyone can set us up appointments with (if we let them) – do we really mange our time efficiently?

Do we spend our time on things that are important and not just urgent? It’s important to distinguish between important and just urgent.

  • Important activities have an outcome that leads to the achievement of your goals.
  • Urgent activities demand immediate attention, and are often associated with the achievement of someone else’s goals (ah had you noticed that?).

We often concentrate on just urgent activities. The things that make the most noise, the things that demand attention because the consequences of not dealing with them are immediate.

The Urgent/Important Matrix is a useful tool for thinking about this.

Eisenhower said, ‘What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.’ This so-called “Eisenhower Principle” is purported to be how Eisenhower organized his tasks. Dr Stephen Covey made the idea more public in his business classic, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. Covey called it the “The Urgent/Important Matrix.” I use it often in coaching and on my business courses and on my NLP Business Practitioner Course:

The Urgent/Important Matrix is a powerful way to use to think about priorities. Using it helps you prevent the natural tendency to focus on urgent activities, so that you learn to keep enough time to focus on what’s really important. This is the way you move from “fire fighting”, into a position where you can grow your business and your career.

This is how it works

Divide and A 4 page into 4

Urgent                                                        Non-Urgent

Important

I

Activities

Crises

Pressing Problems

Deadline driven projects

II

Prevention

Relationship building

Recognising new appointments

Planning recreation

Non-Important

III

Interruptions, some phone calls

Some mail, some reports

Some meetings

Proximate, pressing matters

Popular activities

IV

Trivia, busy work

Some mail

Some phone calls

Time wasters

Pleasant activities

Assess the importance to all the activities on a scale of 1 to 5

Remember Eisenhower also said: ‘Leadership – the art of getting someone else to do something that you want done because he wants to do it.’

When people see you are clear about your objectives and boundaries, they will generally not ask you to do “not important” activities in the future, and at best do it themselves or find someone else.

This blog first appeaerd in 2012 on my then and now defunct NLP Highland Blog.

If you would like to know more about your preferred patterns and how you work with these and get things done on your own or with other people please contact me either here or via the Developing Works website, or via my Coaching Website tel. +44 (0) 7796 134081 (What’sApp as well), +44 (0)1224 900748, +44 (0)1309 676004. And please ask questions or comment here.

Putting Yourself in the Picture

A while ago someone asked me how did I remember things, more importantly how did I frameremember to take things with me after an event, training or meeting or what happened in that meeting. I’d like to share with you.

There’s a technique known as ‘Reframing’ to create a different meaning literally around something, for example to turn a bad experience into a good one, or to notice that there is actually something positive.

Here’s a simple way to do that.

A. Remember an occasion when or where you got angry.
B. Make a picture or image of this or imagine this having happened and see yourself in the picture.
C. Now put a frame around the picture or image.

How does your response to the situation change when you put a wooden frame around it? What about a metal frame? A multi-coloured frame. An oval frame? How about a colourful frame with balloons hanging from it?

And what do we do to remember things when we’ve walked through the door?

We need to make a conscious effort to stop briefly and think about the thing we want to do, or are going to, or are have been doing. And then we need to make a mental image of this thing and place it up to our left. And looking up to our left see this thing, this object, this person, this task, this memory, then imagine seeing it in colour and see it standing still. Making sure it’s still there, move on out of the room and when you’re out of the room and doing the next thing look up to your left and see this item, still standing there. And hey presto, you’ll remember.

If you find this tricky, practice. Only perfect practise makes permanent.

And for some people you might need to place this image up on your right.

Try it out and let me know what happens for you, then walking through the door will be much easier and your memory will improve.

Forgotten to catch up after a meeting or networking?

Well most of us do at times. Some of us believe making notes will help, not so good if you then lave all your info somewhere. I recently realised that I had left all my info from one networking meeting, neatly packaged on one place on the table in the room I had been in. Fortunately the info was still there.
According to an article in Scientific American online, which being scientific has lots and lots of references and could be (for me) a tad exhausting; when we walk through a door we forget. Well actually they were interested in why walking through a door makes us forget.
The article: Gabriel A. Radvansky, Sabine A. Krawietz & Andrea K. Tamplin (2011): Walking through doorways causes forgetting: Further explorations, The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64:8,1632-1645 (click here to read that)  states that walking through a doorway causes what they call ‘an event boundary’ and we update our model of events in respect of what happened previously. They maintain that this ‘can reduce the availability of information in our memory for objects associated with the prior event. And then they do some scientific speak about how memory is essential (in my words) dependent on how or what we associate with the previous event. ? What does that mean, you might be asking? Well it means we need to remind ourselves in some way of what happened or was happening before we left the room.

So in my case above remembering to take all my info from the event happened because I generally (I stress the word generally) have a checking thing (or system) before I leave one place to go to another. We don’t always check because often deep in thought we move from one doorway to another and therefore onto something else.
If you would like to know more, please contact me Rosie O’Hara http://www.developingworks.com, http://www.rosieohara.com tel. 07796 134081 (What’sApp as well), 01224 900748, 01309 676004

How our language affects the way we are

Ever stopped and thought about the things you say to yourself pain in neckeither every day or on a frequent basis?
Phrases such as –
He’s a pain in the neck
I must have a hole in my head
I keep getting it in the neck.
They’re stabbing me in the back
I need a break

And have you noticed how sometimes these things manifest themselves in reality

How you have a sore neck, sore shoulders, a headache, back ache and you do get a break, but not the kind you were thinking of getting?

One of the NLP Operating Beliefs is –
The mind and body are one system
Mind and body interact and influence one another. It is not possible to make a change in one without the other being affected.

Therefore if we consistently talk about a problem, even if we say we don’t believe it’s a real problem, over time it will manifest itself as a problem in our bodies. And the reverse is true, sometimes the physical pain is our body telling us, ‘hello, you have a problem, listen to me your body, pay attention and do something about it.

The busy person who falls badly for example because they were rushing around doing too much and ‘bang’ they have an accident. The body’s way of saying ‘pay attention, give me some time.’

I once worked with a client who came to me about controlling his anger. His language was full of phrases such as ‘I see red all the time,’ ‘I get hot under the collar,’ ‘my blood boils,’ ‘my boss gives me smouldering looks.’ I suggested for his next session he write down all the phrases he used or thought about in respect of anger and come back with a list of the phrases. He phoned me and said there far too many and he just got even angrier and very hot thinking about them.

We did eventually work together on changing how he thought and what he said.

What might you change? Contact me for help, tips, suggestions, coaching 01309 676004 or 01224 900748.

Freeze Framing or How to Get Things Done – Part Three

What to do with the freeze framesgoal properly set
So thinking about creating your future on a Visual Timeline lay this timeline out on the floor or in your mind – perhaps like this:

Now                                                                                           The Future
Straight in front 2 metres to your right

|__________________________________________________________________|

Think of these images you have freeze framed, where will you put them, peg them, stick them or…. on your timeline? Perhaps you can see a vague picture, or you have a symbol for it, perhaps you need to step onto your Timeline and walk forwards to that point and experience the sounds and feelings associated with that experience.

Notice where you will put these memories on your Timeline.
What do you need to do to keep them still? Add a colour? A sound? A tag or tab? What works for you?

1. Stand in the “now” position.

2. Notice how you need to represent these things or events in your future, in different places on the Timeline.

3. What resource state (states) will you need to do this? To achieve it?

4. Once you have a resourceful state or states, ‘anchor’ them by pressing your thumb and finger together – now give this resource state a colour, hear a sound/sounds with it and feel the resourceful feeling flowing throughout your body.

5. With that resourceful state now step on your Timeline in the Now

6. Imagine the resource colour as a mist, permeating and colouring all of your future Timeline.

List below the things you want to do on the left and the right when you will have done them by:

Want to do                                                           Date to do by
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
Like some help with this? Join us in Aberdeen for the Saturday Coaching Club click here or phone Rosie on 01309 676004 or 01224 900748.

Freeze Framing or How to Get Things Done – Part Two

If part one (last week) was not compelling enough then try out magicians wandCreating a Compelling Purpose below.
‘Think about what you want and make an image of it, out in front of you, either as a picture or something panoramic (no frame). Add colour to that image and add absolutely anything into that image that you want to happen.
Imagine who will be there, make them up if you need to, just give yourself permission to pretend (for those people who think is difficult – I bet you can imagine (stress about) all sorts of bad things).
Hear the sounds that will be happening, who will be saying what? Will there be any music? Will there be any other sounds. Hear it in surround sound.
Feel how you will feel, notice where those feelings are, inside your body or outside? Do you have a temperature? Do you have a shape or size?
See all of this happening, and hear it in surround sound, and feel it in every cell of your body. Practise this happening, build up the image up with the things you will see and the sounds you will hear and the feelings you will feel and pull this image towards you and then step into all of this, turnaround and check out what it’s like. Step out again and check out what it looks like, sounds like and feels like and keep it at least at arm’s length.’
If you think this is difficult and that you can’t do it, that you can’t see things, start from the sense that is easiest for you, say to yourself ‘feel how it will feel for you or hear what you will hear, what you are saying or what others are saying.’ And then ask yourself to add the parts from the seeing or the feeling. Practise and practise adding bits in, until you can get this whole sensory experience in you r mind. It’s important that you add elements from all the senses.
I once had a course participant who set this kind of Compelling Purpose up and I listened in, whilst she and someone else worked together and I noticed something was missing, so I asked the person working with her, ‘What’s missing?’ He thought a little and said ‘she wants to set up a client-based business, which requires clients to come into her office, and there are no people in what she is seeing, everything else is there.’ Yes and she said she ‘couldn’t put the people in there, as she didn’t know who they were’. This was in May, and do you know what? By December she had given up her business!

Like some help with this?  Join us in Aberdeen for the Saturday Coaching Club click here or phone Rosie on 01309 676004 or 01224 900748.

 

Freeze Framing or How to Get Things Done – Part One

Detail – do you get lost in detail and not get things done?frame

Here’s a technique – part one of three
See the detail as images, look up to do this.
When you think about your images – ‘what are your images like?’, ‘are you still?’, ‘are you moving?’, ‘is there more than one?’
Ask yourself: ‘When you see these images, what are you seeing?’ (Look up to do this). Think about this and write down what you are seeing and ask yourself more questions such as ‘are these images near or far?’, ‘colour or black and white?’, ‘large or small?’
Then ask yourself ‘what’s important to you?’ that question is either about these pictures or what you want in life. In your answer are you talking about achieving things or avoiding problems? ‘What’s important about that?’
Now in your mind’s eye ‘put a frame around those images that are important to you’ and check out what these images are doing now. ‘Are you still important?’ The images might continue to move in that case say to yourself ‘as these images are moving, I see them …. still …. and as I am seeing them still’ ask yourself ‘what do I notice?’
Do you want or need to pull the images closer, what happens when you do that? Do you want or need to stick/tack/add some of them together to make a film, make a gallery? What happens? What do you need to do to make this more compelling?
You might like to know how to create a resourceful state for working on the above and you will find it useful by the time we get to part three of these posts. Here’s how to do it
Creating a resourceful state
Choose three ‘anchors’ (see below) which will become connected, or associated, to the resource.

Visual find a visual image which evokes the feeling of confidence, e.g. the scene from the time when you did feel confident, or maybe a symbolic image of your choice.

Auditory find a word or phrase and tonality which you can say to yourself that evokes the feeling, e.g. ‘I’m feeling confident!’

Kinesthetic make a gesture, e.g. clench your fist, squeeze your fingers, etc.

Like some help with this?  Join us in Aberdeen for the Saturday Coaching Club click here or phone Rosie on 01309 676004 or 01224 900748.

 

On Networking – 10 Tips or Suggestions

We all network, in some way, whether it’s a chat down the 000803_1078_1032_v__v.thmsupermarket or at the football match, at the hairdressers, having a coffee etc.  And we network for different reasons. 10 tips or suggestions here.

1. Be passionate – about yourself, your work and the company you represent
2. Set a goal – i.e. plan and prepare before attending events. Ask yourself what do you want to achieve from this event?
3. Don’t butt in on other people’s conversations. If someone is deep in conversation hover respectfully then say ‘Hi, I am or I’d like to meet you.’
4. Don’t think ‘What’s in it for me’ but ‘what’s in it for the other person, who might you connect them with?’
5. Follow up to build trust, do what you say you’re going to do when you say you’ll do it
6. Don’t hear ‘no’ only ‘not yet’ – spot opportunities for the future. 7. Be patient – it takes time to build relationships and let people to do business with you.
8. Ask open questions – by doing this you get better answers and create more business opportunities. Listen actively – we learn nothing by talking, only by listening. Know when to talk, when to listen.
9. Don’t use 50 shades of ‘really’. Indicate sincere interest or make a plausible excuse to move on. Sadly some people are boring, only interested in themselves, or just rude and bear in mind some people are new to this networking and are nervous which makes them all of the aforementioned.
10. Enjoy yourself. If you don’t, think about what was going on. Take a fly on the wall position. Was it the venue? Was it the format? What was it? Next time, do something different or try out a different format. Or network online and then meet individuals in a safe and public place for one to one networking.

I was at an event not long ago, where a guy told me what he did and said ‘I don’t suppose you’d be interested in what I do.’ Aha I thought’ really? How do you know?’ I then asked him if he could recommend someone to me who would provide a certain service based on what he had said, he replied ‘oh all the guys I know would be too busy, look in yellow pages’. There ended the conversation.
I would also like to add something one of my associates said too me once ‘if you network and hand your card to people, then expect them to contact you and when they do be respectful, throwing your toys out the pram because you’re on someone’s mailing list could potentially lose you a referral or future business’. Otherwise in the words of Daniel Priestley all you have done is collected a heap of business cards; you need to make networking work.

 

If you want help or ideas on language to get other people to understand you better or for you to understand them better, or help on confidence or presenting yourself to others – please contact us 01309 676004, 01224 900748, 07796 134081. http://www.developingworks.com

Seven More Tips for Negotiations

Following on from my last postb_opl061.thm

 

8  Make small concessions, one at a time, and always get something in return – give nothing away for free.

9 Trade concessions using “If…then…”

10 Build clear and unambiguous agreements by asking “What if…”

11 Make the process enjoyable – if the task is stuck change the subject. (The person with the most flexibility in any interaction will get the best result.)

12 Resolve deadlock by finding out what the other party’s concerns are and understanding the concerns.

13 You cannot negotiate a complaint; ask for what you want.

14 Written numbers appear more real than spoken numbers. This is an illusion.

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