Rachel Nies / November 23rd, 2021
Ah… What a beautiful time of year! It’s the season of counting our blessings and spreading thankfulness and gratitude.
So why am I so tired of feeling invisible?
The other day I checked out at Walmart with an actual human checker. Even though I stood at the checkout for a while, the checker didn’t look up at me once or say a single word to me — not even to tell me my order total.
Then, there was my recent trip to McDonald’s. I stood at the front counter waiting for someone to take my order, only to be yelled at by an employee from behind a wall somewhere that I was supposed to use the order kiosk.
I don’t understand service like this, during the holiday season or any time of the year.
Shouldn’t I, as the customer, be the center of your attention at that moment, even if it’s just enough to look me in the eye, ask me how my day is, or even to say hello?
Situations like these are why I truly believe that today’s business success stories will be from those companies that know how to love people in one or all of the ways listed below.
Praising others changes things, and it’s one of the easiest ways to better your print business.
When you praise another person, whether a customer or team member, they not only begin to look at you with appreciation in a whole new way, they work harder to rise to the level of praise you’ve given them.
In 2016, Marketing Ideas For Printers began a yearly practice called the One Word Challenge. Instead of setting New Year’s resolutions each year, our team members pick one word to focus their improvement efforts for the year.
This year, the word I chose was praise, and I’ve been working hard at it.
I put “praise” on my to-do list by sending each member of my family a “High Five” praise-filled text every day. I started sending thank you notes to each of the people on my MI4P team every quarter. And, for my printer friends, I’ve been working hard to tell them something I appreciate about them in every interaction we have.
The unique thing about praise is that it allows people to open up to what you have to offer. It makes them willing to follow you, whether in marketing your printing services, creating a new project with your internal team, or leading your family at home.
As author and investor Richard Branson says, “Lavish praise on people and people with flourish; criticize people and they shrivel up.”
How can you make your team and print buyers flourish? Remember, the opportunities to give praise are endless, so don’t miss them.
Recently, I took my mom to the hospital to have cataract surgery.
My mom is an incredible lady. There are probably a gazillion things I admire about my mom, but as I was sitting with her in that surgery prep room, there were two that stood out above the rest.
First, my mom used the power of praise. She said things to the hospital staff like, “You’re really good at your job,” and “I trust you.” How often do you think people hear something like that?
Secondly, even in the onslaught of nurses, doctors, aids, and anesthesiologists, my mom asked the name of each person. And the real kicker? She remembered the name of each person and called them by their name when she saw them later. How often do you think these staff members feel unseen in their day-to-day work, and what a difference it must make for them to be called out and remembered by name?
It got me thinking about how powerful using a person’s name is in everyday life and in customer service and marketing. Calling a person by name:
Dale Carnegie once said that “A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” So, it’s important to put the effort in to learn, remember, and use the name of the person you’re connecting with.
Sometimes in business (and in life), we think that loving others means pleasing everyone or fixing everything.
I have to laugh as I’m writing this because you probably won’t meet a bigger people pleaser than me. I want to make everyone happy and tend to think it’s all my fault when I can’t.
This is where I’ve learned the power of validation. I can validate another person’s situation, comment, feedback, or point of view, but it doesn’t mean I have to change or fix everything. Sometimes I honestly can’t fix it.
Validation is a powerful concept that is often either ignored or buried under the fix-it mentality. You might not need to fix it. You might simply need to say, “I understand. I see where you’re coming from. Thanks for sharing.” Sometimes team members or customers don’t need anything more than to know their voice was heard.
What does validation look like for you? It means…
With validation, you’ll find that it’s actually quite easy to make another person feel listened to and valued simply by seeing a situation from their point of view.
During this time of year, we’re all focused on being grateful and appreciating others more. Focus on showing love in the simplicity of praise, using a person’s name, and validating others’ concerns, and you’ll take your business even further than you could’ve ever expected.