..................................."Promise Culture"................................... Purpose - Passion - Principles - Promise - People - Plan - Performance - Progress - Preservation

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Stop asking why and start asking what

May 31, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Stop asking “Why” and start asking “What”

At the core of “Promise Culture” is Purpose or the “WHY” someone or group does something.  It shapes their deliverables and the methods they use to achieve their results. If you ask someone as to “WHY” they are doing something, they tend to give a confused look and must stop and give the question a deeper level of thought.  Sometimes they craft a rather pointless response or just blurt out an answer of I don’t know why.  This happens because the question of “WHY” triggers an emotional response and most people are not comfortable in that area of communication.

At this stage of the interaction, there is a communication breakdown. What potentially started out as a purposeful question has done exactly the opposite and cause one of the parties to go on the defensive and shut down.

There is still important knowledge to be gathered in answering the question of why, but how you get to the answer is critically important to the process of arriving there. Here is where the use of the question starting with “WHAT” comes into play.

Rather than asking the question of “Why are you doing ….”  try asking the question of “What caused you to ….” The person is now one step removed from the emotional response and focused on the more behavioral aspect of the questions which they can adjust to more readily on the fly.  It gets them opening up and communicating vs. shutting down.

This small change may require you to ask a few more “WHAT” questions to get deeper into the answers you may be seeking insight to, but it will keep the dialogue moving forward.  Think of it like peeling an onion.  You need to ask a series of skin peeling questions to seek what is at each more internal level of the conversation. While keeping the open dialogue with “What” based open ended questions, your interaction can be more productive and less threatening.

This approach can be used while discussing a client or employee situation with another employee.  It can be used when interviewing new potential hires.  It can be used when interacting with clients for any number of reasons.

This week practice your interpersonal skills by using the “What” questions rather than the “Why” questions.

Having challenges using “What” type questions? Call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 to help you structure your “What” to get to your Purpose.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
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 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Memorial Day 2018

May 24, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Memorial Day 2018

 

This weekend is Memorial Day!  Take time to remember those who have paid the ultimate price for FREEDOM!

Talk about what they sacrificed and help our future generations genuinely appreciate what we have here in the USA.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Battery Re-Charging

May 17, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Battery Re-Charging

The unofficial start of summer is just a couple of weeks away with the celebration of Memorial Day. Many of your team will be taking time off work to vacation with their families and friends. Although this can put a strain on the workload, it is critical that everyone take the time to re-charge their battery.

Recharging can take many forms.  Some like to take longer, full week get away type trips while others will mix Friday/Monday long weekends to get shorter but more frequent time away from their work activities. Some will even add an interesting change and take days in the middle of the week, so they get weekends off and then work a day or so and another two days off etc.

As business leaders you too MUST take a break!  You do yourself nor your business any good if you burn the candle at both ends and eventually burn up.

Regardless of your particular approach, it is critical to decompress from work (deadlines, commitments and stress) and even more importantly to get a technology break.  Set that “Smart” phone aside and turn off your PC. Believe it or not the world will survive without you for a few days or even just a few hours.

The business world is faster, more competitive, harder driving and expectations seem to only escalate. This just compounds the need to cut the work cord and plug in the battery re-charger on yourself.

This week – here is an exercise you can try to test your organizations’ readiness for you to be away and unable to have communication with them.  Consider planning a trip remote enough that cell service would not be available, and the Wi-Fi signal is non-existent. Then start reviewing each department and what and how they would react to issues you have typically dealt with to resolve.  Do they have the necessary skills and tools to address the issues?  What transfer of knowledge is not in place, so they could handle the situation? Have you empowered them to make such decisions? These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself and capture your reactions/answers.  This gives you the list of leadership development needs you MUST put in place regardless if you take the trip or not.  Have confidence in your team and they will rise to the occasion.

Need a partner to help you formulate the plan? It is time to call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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Investing in Customer Service

May 10, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

Investing in Customer Service

A lot has been written about customer service.  It is not a new topic, but it is critical to the success of your business. Some organizations excel at providing it while others simply hope it works out for everyone.

There are many options for training your people on what makes up good customer service. The question you need to ask yourself first is: what does your organization define as customer service? In addition to defining customer service, you need to articulate what does it look like so customers and fellow employees can recognize quality customer service when it is taking place. Everyone can then catch everyone else providing good customer service.

The importance of knowing what it looks like as a standard in your company gives everyone involved the opportunity to STOP bad customer service when that, unfortunately, trickles into the business. If everyone is not top of mind conscious about providing good customer service, then individual definitions can take root and lower the overall customer experience.

This is one of those areas where when left alone it does not stay status quo.  The workplace is a busy place.  We are all being pulled and pushed in many directions.  This high volume of distraction causes us to get off track.  We all want to provide the best customer service possible but when things get crazy, the customer service experience suffers. It is not intentional by any means.  Your staff does not wake up in the morning and come to work to dis-service your customers. If they did you would have already acted on that situation.

Your team or like in the photo, “The Crew” are working together to provide a best in class customer experience. They have been not only trained in doing the specifics of their duties but are attentive to the details of each customer interaction.  It is not a hurried or rushed situation. By doing things too fast almost always contributes to chaos and in the end, the customer experience is sacrificed in the process.

At the core of having your “Crew” provide the best customer service possible, you need to start with your core values.  These boundaries define the internal and external expectations which your business will not violate. From your core values emanates how each person on your team must perform when providing any level of customer service. You must give everyone the ability to provide customer service in all situations.  No, I’m not promoting unlimited budgets but each person at their given level of contribution must know they can extend service when needed and not have to answer to leadership as to their reasoning for taking the situation into their control. Yes, there will likely be some abuse of this privilege, but the investment will be returned in great brand awareness in the marketplace and that is hard to place a budget on.

This week take a look at some of the numbers which are indicators of possible areas which your customer service can improve.  Areas such as callbacks, returns, bad social media post etc., these may lead you to a fuller understanding of where you need to bring clarity to what is customer service at your business.

Customer Service not up to expectations? It is time to call JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 and begin making a change to your customer service practices.

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945
Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates
Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates
Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

 

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New Hire Breakdown

May 3, 2018

ISSN# 1545-2646

 

 

 

 

 

New Hire Breakdown

You have finally found what you believe to be the person for the job you were hiring for in your company. There is a sense of relief and anticipation that you can now return to work as usual. Getting back to all those little things that you had to put aside while you added the workload of recruiting, selecting and making an offer to a candidate.

Well here comes the disappointment!

As much work as you thought finding and hiring the new employee was, incorporating that new person into your company should have a greater level of your energy.

Onboarding and bringing your new member of the team up to speed on your business culture, your business processes, your clients and the market space you play in are vital to the longevity of your new hire at your company. Too often a business has spent so much time and effort to find the person that they almost expect that individual to somehow just assimilate into their organization.

Why wouldn’t they?

You just spend the last “X” number of hours interviewing this person and you believe they “Get it.” Why else would you have hired them?

The relationship between an employer and employee has grown up over the years.  It is not just the company seeking a person for a job, but it is equally the person seeking a company which wants not the body but the heart, soul, mind and complete individual to be part of the organization environment and culture. We hear a lot about how new people entering the full-time workplace are looking for more.  We kid around about how more means more time off, more money etc.  The reality is that they are seeking more in terms of what your business can offer them in terms of a whole lot more.

They are wanting to be part of something. Not just show up and put in time for pay.  Yes, they want to be compensated well but they don’t want to be worked so many hours that they don’t have time for the other things in their world.

As owners and having been developed into our present state of leadership under different circumstances, we often don’t connect with this approach.  We see it differently such as them having to “Pay their dues.” The reality is that during the interview process, both parties may have very well danced around these subject matters to move the candidate process forward. (Side note – This practice is not acceptable and only causes you more turnover in the short and long run) Now that the new employee is showing up for their job, it is time to properly set expectations and welcome them into the organization. Don’t disengage now!!!  Take the necessary time to welcome the new person. Get them not just introduced but informed about who does what in the organization and how it all fits together. If you have a new hire process, then use it completely.  Hold yourself accountable to not just checking off the boxes but to make sure the new person understands and appreciates what and why your organization does things in a particular way.  The more they grasp of your purpose and means to achieve, this will cement stronger bonds of performance to your company.

This week look at how you onboard a new hire.  Do you have a solid approach?  Does it include all the necessary steps to have the person not only be welcomed but begin to fit into the environment? Ask a few of your more recent hires to give you feedback on what would have helped them get up to speed quicker and incorporate those changes into future hires.  Go back and clean up any open onboarding missed steps with recent hires, so you can get everyone on the same page.

Is your onboarding process effective? JKL Associates is ready to help you reduce your turnover. Give us a call at (313) 527-7945

Questions or comments – email us at partners@jklassociates.com or call our Office at (313) 527-7945

Become a Fan on Facebook ? www.facebook.com/jklassociates

Link up on LinkedIn ? www.linkedIn.com/in/jklassociates

Follow us on Twitter ? www.twitter.com/@jklassociates

 


 Copyright – JKL Associates 2018

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