Archives for posts with tag: praise

customer-service

In the sales world, ensuring that proper service, support & satisfaction levels exist requires consistent & frequent engagement with your customers, including any combination of the following tactics:

* the business’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is closely monitored by Sales Management to make certain that all the necessary activities are occurring, being updated and remain current

* the Sales Team is being challenged during weekly sales meetings for updates on key clients (a prudent method for monitoring any salesperson’s awareness with regard to the status of their customers)

* periodic customer surveys (either electronic or via phone, depending on the type of client base) should be administered to gauge current levels of satisfaction with regard to: responsiveness, delivery times, product quality and assortment, etc.; while further ascertaining details about any concerns

* random follow-up calls to customers conducted by Sales Managers in order to get instantaneous feedback with regard to their customer’s current needs & levels of satisfaction, as well as their Sales Team’s performance

* the aforementioned weekly sales meetings provide an obvious forum for the sales team to share examples of actual sales success stories and best-practices with regard to what is working with customers, and/or changes in the marketplace that should be addressed

Further, Sales Managers must provide periodic updates to their team providing  commentary on any recent “wins” or key findings. This additional information sharing can be utilized by your salesforce as part of their selling “toolbox.”

Importantly, sales success stories should be ideally spread throughout the entire organization, directed at creating a collaborative culture and spirit of camaraderie across the company.

Finally, from a brand enhancement perspective, customers should be solicited for testimonials about the company which can be utilized by the marketing team for promotion of the business (which also can be utilized to celebrate the sales team successes).

Why not conduct a self-assessment of your organization’s sales operation to validate that these activities are consistently occurring?  It couldn’t hurt!

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Recog

During a revisit of Dale Carnegie’s classic How to Win Friends and Influence People, I was reminded of the importance of recognizing and praising other people.

A review of virtually any survey on why employees quit their organizations (or bosses!) reveals that the lack of praise, feedback and/or recognition is a consistent contributing cause for their departure.

Reflecting on past experience, I believe that leaders would do well to seize this opportunity and make ongoing recognition an essential part of their management toolbox.

And not just by email! Whenever possible, a face-to-face thank you and acknowledgement, or handwritten feedback, will typically be seen as much more meaningful by the recipient.

Some recognition checkpoints:

  • ensure the praise is very specific, citing exactly what the person did, and why it was beneficial to the team
  • it must be genuine and authentic
  • provide recognition as close to the action as possible…urgency is impactful
  • although praising in public is desired, be aware that a jealousy factor on the part of others might occur

Leadership challenge: are there opportunities for you to improve your reward and recognition efforts?

Delegation Flow Chart

During decades of “management”, I couldn’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard that phrase “it’s easier to do it myself.”

Although sometimes that may be true, in the long run, doing everything yourself is no formula for successful productivity.

The flow chart nicely depicts the proper delegation process for a strong leader:

  1. Be able to perform any task that you are responsible for supervising
  2. Be able to demonstrate how to do it properly
  3. Be able to teach someone how to do it as you work together
  4. Be able to monitor their execution with constructive feedback
  5. Be able to praise your protégé for their accomplishment

Great leaders influence their team toward achievement through effective delegation.

One such person was Dwight Eisenhower who stated that “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because they want to do it.” Genius!!!

Thank You

The “Boltz from Bernie: Leadership Strikes” blog was derived out of a process I started over 15 years ago: recognizing and thanking my peers or employees for outstanding performance by surprising them with handwritten notes or cards which acknowledged a superior effort.

Those writings were headlined as a “Boltz from Bernie” (accompanied with a lightning bolt graphic flashing through the sky!)

This handwritten feedback was very specific, citing exactly what the person did, and why it was special and impactful to our team, as well as the overall organization.

Especially in this day and age of electronic this and texted that, the receipt of a genuine, sincere “Thank You,” done in writing, on unique letterhead or cards, is impactful!

And if hand-delivered with a heartfelt, verbal appreciation of what the team member has accomplished, all the better.

Writer’s Note: I remain humbled by how often I’ve seen these documents proudly displayed in cubicles, offices and even homes years after they were issued to my valued employees.