When NOT Exceeding Expectations Is OK...

We closed last time with a commitment to address scenarios where team members refuse to exceed expectations. Before I jump into that, I need to call your attention to something that will absolutely exceed YOUR expectations: the virtual LIVE2LEAD:Harrisonburg experience that Cindy and I will be hosting this Friday! There’s so much value (and bonus content) packed into this event that I just can’t fit it all in here… Check it out for yourself!

So when is NOT exceeding expectations acceptable? Believe it or not, there are times where it’s OK. If we don’t mind our customers and team members having an average experience, we don’t need to put in that little bit of extra effort and we don’t need to worry about maintaining a standard for what our team members strive to deliver. That will work just fine in a booming economy where every Joe out there has plenty of money to spend…

But we don’t build the kind of loyalty that brings a...

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Get More Juice From Each Squeeze!

I closed the last blog post with a promise to share some practical steps each of us can build a culture that creates amazing customer experiences and directly impacts profitability. Before I go there though, I want to share what may be the last invitation I can pass along for you to join me and Cindy this coming Friday (Nov 13) for the final LIVE2LEAD:Harrisonburg virtual experience we’ll be hosting in 2020. This year’s content is incredible but the bonuses are worth as much as the event itself… Hope you’re able to join us!

So how can we get more juice from each squeeze? First, understand I’m not suggesting that we ever try to actually SQUEEZE extra dollars out of the clients or customers we interact with! If we provide them with value through the product or service we offer, we deserve fair compensation for that. What I am suggesting is that we do everything in our power to make sure we capture as much profit as we possibly can from the revenue we...

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I’ll Get Right Back With You...

Just a few days ago, I contacted a relatively new local restaurant to confirm their current business hours prior to setting up an appointment with someone coming in from out of town. I completed the form on their website, hit submit, and received a message saying that I would receive feedback at the email address I provided shortly. More than 72 hour have passed and still no response…

I know it was a simple question with the answer likely already posted on their website, but I’ve seen several other places operating on different schedules than they had listed simply due to Covid. I also wanted to double check this since the person I’m meeting is coming from an hour away and the time we were looking at is right as the place shows it will open.

While whether they’re open or not isn’t a big deal, the point I’m calling attention to here is that their messaging said I’d receive a reply soon and that hasn’t happened…

So what does that...

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Exceeding Customer Expectations

As I referenced in the last blog post, John Maxwell told me several years ago that just five percent of the people we interact with are willing to put in the effort to truly EXCEED what’s expected of them. With the regulations we’ve seen in place over the last several months due to Covid, many businesses in the service industry have taken quite a hit. Times like this make it even more important to have a culture where each team member is willing to be in that five percent!

But before we can EXCEED anyone’s expectations, we need to have a clear understanding of what they really expect from us! And in many cases, we need to take responsibility for setting clear expectations of what they should expect from us... 

Cindy and I were recently on a Zoom call with Jeff Henderson, author of Know What You’re FOR, where he challenged us to consider three seemingly basic but extremely important questions:

  1. What do you want to be known for?
  2. What are you known for?
  3. Do...
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What Does It Really Cost?

As I wrapped up the last blog, I referenced a study that showed how many organizations lose as much as 17 hours per week to miscommunication. Unlike the Salesforce.com study, I couldn’t put my find on any of the additional details that study covered or who conducted it. That said, I found it! We typically share these statistics during the second lesson of our Emerging Leader Development course, Critical Principles for Effective Communication… Here you go:

According to an SIS International Research study, the cumulative cost per year due to productivity losses resulting from communication barriers is more than $26,000 per employee. Not only that, the study found that a business with 100 employees spends an average downtime of 17 hours a week clarifying communications. Translated into dollars, that’s more than $530,000 a year.

I go on to detail out that math for companies half that size and twice that size, just so participants have a chance to relate it to the...

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Do They Really Know How Much You Value Them?

Originally shared in A Daily Dose Of Leadership on July 8, 2020.

As leaders, we each work incredibly hard to earn belief and trust from each individual on our teams. But let me stop here and point out that I didn’t say “as managers” or “as executives” because the title alone has very little to do with leading!

Quite honestly, earning belief and trust with each of our team members is something we should be working to do on a daily basis. One of the ways we can do that is by being very intentional about showing how much we truly value the unique skill sets each of them provide our organizations.

In a recent Leading At The Next Level lesson called A MAJOR Underlying Issue, I touched on some of the issues we’re seeing across our great nation on what seems to be a daily basis. While it may or may not be quite as dramatic as the media paints it, there are some significant issues that need to be addressed. And in my opinion, it’s not a black or...

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