When Talking to Customers, Be Confident and Show Your Expertise

When Talking to Customers, Be Confident and Show Your Expertise

Attitude and Mindset, Communication, Featured
Are you an expert in your field? If not, why should I use your product or service? Customers expect the best and you give the impression that you can't give it, they will go elsewhere. You need to project the image that you are an expert. That requires using the right words, especially since more and more customer interactions take place through writing (email, live chat, even Twitter). Start the conversation by establishing a personal rapport. Show the customer that you’re listening to their problem or complaint, and then shift to a take-charge attitude, using confident, assertive language. Research shows that customer satisfaction is higher when you avoid deferential words (“afraid,” “mistake”) and use dominant language instead (“must,” “confirm,” “action”). In addition, customers will see you as more helpful if…
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Credibility Is Easily Lost

Credibility Is Easily Lost

Attitude and Mindset, Featured, Improvement
There is very little that is as important to your success as your reputation. Your reputation determines how you are viewed. If people do not think you are credible, they will not believe what you say. While it is easy to destroy your reputation, it is difficult to restore. Here are some things to keep in mind to keep your reputation at its best. Follow through: When you say you are going to do something, do it. You must be true to your word. If for some reason it becomes impossible to do what you said, be honest. Try your best to accomplish the task, but if you can't go to the person and explain why you were unable to do what you said. If you don't know, say so:…
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3 Work Skills That Are Useful At Home

3 Work Skills That Are Useful At Home

Featured, Process
Is your home life more chaotic than your work life? If so, you’re not alone, and some of the skills you use in your job can help. Planning and scheduling. Do you struggle to finish your personal to-do list? Block out time in your calendar for the things you need to get done (even mundane tasks like laundry and errands). You’ll feel more in control and more productive.Decision making. is about understanding how your actions affect other people. To improve, pay attention to how your colleagues react to things, and ask yourself (or them) what could be behind their behavior.Putting people first. At work, would you idly check your phone while a client speaks? Of course not — and our families deserve the same respect. Try to give people your full attention at…
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All The World Is A Stage

All The World Is A Stage

Attitude and Mindset, Featured
In the play, As You Like It, William Shakespeare states, "All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players." The phrase is meant to compare life to a play, but the line applies to business as well. In business everyone has their role and it takes everybody hitting their mark to make things run. This isn't just about the people but about the businesses themselves. Businesses play different roles at different times. They can partner with other businesses in one area and compete with them in another. They can be benefactors, suppliers, buyers, employers, etc. The roles they play are many and just as each employee, supplier, etc. needs to play their roles for the business to benefit, the business has to play its roles properly…
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What Successful People Did Is What You Can Emulate

What Successful People Did Is What You Can Emulate

Featured, Improvement
There are hundreds of books and articles where successful people talk about their habits. The idea is that if you follow those habits then you too can be successful. The problem is most of these focus on what these people are doing today. Many of these of habits are only feasible because they already have money. You need to look at what successful people did before they had money. Two perfect examples are Warren Buffett and Arianna Huffington. When Warren Buffett talks about his success, he talks about what he did as a child and how he made his early money, not just what he does now. Arianna Huffington wrote a book on how people can become successful. She completely passed over how she made her initial money. This is…
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At Your Next Meeting, Use a Shot Clock

At Your Next Meeting, Use a Shot Clock

Featured, Process
Tired of being in meetings that drag on and on? It may sound unusual, but the answer is a shot clock, much like the ones used in professional basketball. Here’s how it works: Before a meeting, explain that you want to devote a certain amount of time to each agenda item. If you’re leading an annual budget review and have 10 investment proposals on the table, say, “We’re going to spend exactly 5 minutes discussing each topic. Speakers will have two minutes to present, followed by three minutes of discussion.” If different topics warrant different amounts of time, try to determine that in advance. Then set up the shot clock — a smartphone timer works nicely. It should buzz (loudly) when time runs out and keep buzzing until people stop talking. While it’s…
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Putting Things In The Right Order Matters

Putting Things In The Right Order Matters

Featured, Process
In school there are courses that have prerequisites. The reason is that the courses build on each other. To get the most out of the second course, you must have completed the first. To get the most done you have to consider the order in which you are doing it. Many projects have several parts where later parts rely on the first ones being completed. When planning an event, you don't advertise an event before a location is secured. More commonly, organizations take on projects that could succeed, but fail to fix problems first, which dooms the project. For example, a project is started before budget shortfalls are fixed. This makes the costs of the project, which would have been manageable, too much for the organization to bear. Make sure…
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All Comparisons Are Not Equal

All Comparisons Are Not Equal

Evaluate, Featured
Mark Twain once said, "There are lies, damned lies, and statistics." There was a recent instagram post from a company called Arbonne. Arbonne is a network marketing/MLM company that sells cosmetics and vitamins. The company was touting the fact that their growth rate was higher than Google and Amazon. While the statistic is technically true, it's also incredibly misleading. How can they claim to have a growth rate larger than those incredibly successful companies? It is simple. When a $20 million company grows to $30 million it has a 50% growth rate. For a billion dollar company to match that rate, they need to grow $500 million. By the same token if you invest a dollar and get a 1000% return, you have $10. A fantastic growth rate but hardly…
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