Posted in Business, Creativity, Relationships

Career Success ~ The Cream Always Rises

Manet, Edouard - La Serveuse de Bocks (The Wai...
Image via Wikipedia

This post is for all the people who work in the services and sales industry!  You may work for a horrible boss, a poorly managed company, in a town/city/state that you’d rather say good riddance to.   How you respond to pressure and stress, dissatisfaction and disappointment will make all the difference in your ability to change your circumstances.  If you do not find a way to manage your perceptions and responses, you may sabotage your chances at upward and outward mobility.  Your attitude will show no matter how hard you try to control the outward facing appearance and behaviors.

Below are some examples of what I’m talking about:

Any position where cash tips are involved! (Waitresses, Waiters, Bell Hops, Cab Drivers, Baristas)

Performing services for customers is often a thankless job.  There are many who will see and treat you as a second class citizen, if they “see” you at all!  Take heart.  When I choose to spend money at an eating establishment with full service, I just want to have prompt attentive service.  If I don’t have to ask for refills, food and drinks are served piping hot, and the interaction with my wait staff is fun and not “work” for me, I’ll tip generously.   Treat each customer as though they are the person you will read about in the morning’s newspaper as the person who left a hundred dollar tip.

Mechanics, Technicians and Repairmen

If you’re a mechanic, don’t just fix the problem.  Go the extra mile and provide free advice about anticipated maintenance needs (tires, belts, filters, etc.)  By caring for the vehicle as though you were going to allow your pregnant daughter to drive it, you’ll show the customer you care more about the person than you do the car (money.)  Take the time to listen to your customers.  You’d be surprised at the loyalty you’ll instill in your customers by remembering small details about your customers and their property.

Healthcare Professionals (Doctors, Psychologists, Nurses)

If you’re an obstetrician…be sure to make more eye contact with that expectant mother than you do at the patient’s chart.  Remember that in spite of your 15 minute scheduled allotment, metal instruments feel cold, words conveying delicate news can sometimes be more painful than needles, and that uterus IS attached to a human being.  Whether this patient is having their first or their fifth child, they deserve your respect and expertise in as personal and professional manner as possible.

Sales and Marketing Professionals

If you’re in sales, remember the dance of respect.  Those people patronize your establishment for a variety of reasons.  Location proximity, habit, convenience, possibly the people.  As soon as a customer begins to feel like a victim, prey, a prospect, a lead, or a candidate, you have removed the “person” (human aspect) from the customer.  This shift in perspective is just enough motivation for people to override their reasons for patronage and find a new establishment.

Some days are much harder than others.  Reflecting on and accepting the reality of those busy, difficult and sometimes unbearable moments before your day begins can help you mentally prepare yourself.  If you can, try seeing yourself as an actor or actress in a movie in your day.  This coping technique is one you can use to do your best in spite of how you feel.  Remember to be the success you dream!

Break a leg!

Posted in SocialMedia, Writing

Grumpy Old Man Predicts Demise of USPS

As he harrumphed out of the Post Office I thought to myself–now this is worth a blog entry!

I took a short break from work today to mail a care package to a friend overseas.  Not having mailed a package over the ocean blue before, I arrived at the counter and was promptly asked for my customs form.  She read my raised eyebrow and upturned “huh?” expression like a seasoned customer service rep!  She handed a blank form to me with a smile, and I stepped aside.  “Now press hard” the clerk said, “it has to go through all seven copies hon!”

I was about to “press hard” when I heard the door open and looked up just in time to see a short older man with a baseball cap shuffle into the room.  As he approached the counter, he stopped with a grunt when he noticed me.  “Go ahead sir, I have to fill out a  form.”  I offered.

USPS service delivery truck in a residential a...
Image via Wikipedia

With his three legal-sized letters in hand he slowly approached the clerk.  His chin hovered maybe four inches above the counter.  “How do I make sure these are going to get where they need to go?” he asked.  Teresa (her name tag advertised) said, “Most people just send those certified,”  noticing two were addressed to the IRS.  As she handed him two blank certified receipts, he asked “What am I supposed to do with those?”  “Well….you’ll need to put the addresses on them?” she patiently replied with a slightly bemused expression.  “I already wrote it on the G_ _ Da_ _ envelope!  That’s why the USPS is going to fail and other companies are going to take business away from you!  Ya hafta make things so difficult!”  He looked in my direction with a swaggered expression, non-verbally fishing for support from the customer side of the counter.  I released an audible chuckle, and went back to filling out my form.  After taking his receipt, he lumbered back outside.  Now ready with my completed form, I withheld the urge to commiserate with Teresa and applaud her patience.  I paid the $22.90 fee to ship my eight pound, nine ounce package to my friend, thanked Teresa and went back out to my vehicle.  The grumpy old man was still getting into his vehicle.  Reflecting with fondness and humor on his perspectives, I found shelter from the wind and snow in my van and returned to work.

Later in the afternoon on a break I posted the following tweet on Twitter:

“2remain relevant @USPS shld consider automating its in-person forms processing. Scan handwritten addresses for Cert/Regist form data! #tip

I am so thankful for the discovering yet another coping mechanism for irritating and frustrating situations!  As a writer, every event is a writing opportunity.  Viewing life through the eyes of a storyteller turns every annoyance into raw material for the keyboard or journal.  I’ve always enjoyed people-watching!  Now I have another facet to this hobby I can explore.  It also allows me to step back and use an analytical eye to see if there’s an easy way to resolve an issue, or turn a challenge into opportunity.

Thank you for reading!  Follow me on Twitter @justasked