Personalization Principle #3: Empathy

Personalization Principle #3: Empathy

Being empathetic in business with both your teammates and your customers is the third powerful Personalization Principle.

Remember, all seven Personalization Principles work in synchronicity and harmony together. To see the first two principles click here (Principle 1 Authenticity, Principle 2 Hospitality).

Showing empathy is a powerful principle in every moment of every day. Being empathetic when a colleague or a customer is having an issue or a challenge is critically important.

I see companies and individuals make the same mistake repeatedly when trying to recover with a customer service issue. They usually make the customer jump through hoops or they try to move to a recovery solution before making the customer feel listened to, heard and most importantly, to understand what it is that they truly desire.

Being empathetic is not treating the other person how you want to be treated! The golden rule is outdated! Demonstrating empathy is the ability to understand and create the type of experience that your customer desires.

Believe me, demonstrating empathy requires different approaches from customer to customer.  Even the same customer may have different wants, desires and expectations from one moment or one day to the next. To create positively differentiated customer experiences, the type that create fast, fun and hassle free interactions, empathy plays an important and integral role.

So, do you have the ability to understand and share the feelings of another human being? Sure you do! However, are you?

In your daily actions if you are not being empathetic with every customer and colleague, then I have lots of empathy for you.

Empathy 7PP
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Personalization Principle #2: Hospitality

Personalization Principle #2: Hospitality

Last week I shared the first of the seven personalization principles, authenticity. Remember, each of the seven principles needs to be applied with equal excellence. They work in synchronicity and harmony together.

The second principle is developing and maintaining a positive hospitable attitude.

Personalization Principle #2: Hospitality

Got attitude? Everyone’s got an attitude. Everyone gives an attitude. The question is — is your attitude hospitable or inhospitable? More importantly, how do you know?

If you think about it, creating a hospitable and positive attitude is not only important in business, but in the rest of your personal life as well. Remember, a positive attitude is almost always a precursor to sustainable success.

Don’t hedge your bets. Take the daily action that is required to develop your attitude. Having an attitude of being a servant is an investment that will produce returns forever. Developing a positive attitude and a hospitable mindset isn’t something you are going to get from your fairy godmother and it isn’t something that you are going to be able to distill from reading a book or hearing a speech.

I promise you, if you work at it each and every day, you will be amazed when you look back at how powerful the cumulative affect of that positive incremental change is.

Creating a hospitable environment with your positive attitude is important regardless of the type of organization you are in or what type of role you play. Remember that your positive and hospitable attitude is a precursor to your success!

Find out more about the 7 Personalization Principles here or buy the book on Amazon.

Hospitality 7PP

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Layered eLearning vs. Instructor Led Learning

Layered eLearning vs. Instructor Led Learning

When you provide your people engaging content that is available to them across various technology such as computers and mobile devices, they are more likely to use it and complete it with significant, measurable results.

When learning is repeated until your people understand it, can retrieve it, and apply it — it creates the sweet spot where change takes hold!

Layered learning is designed to transfer learning and create positive change using repetition in preparation and in practice.

Learn more about the Layered Learning philosophy and design.

Layered Learning vs. Instructor Learning

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Personalization Principle #1: Authenticity

Personalization Principle #1: Authenticity

My new book The Seven Personalization Principles: Learn the Principles to Thrive in these Disruptive Times is officially available on Amazon.

The book examines how humans add value in service interactions with personalization. Technology including, robots, apps and kiosks have already displaced millions of jobs worldwide. The quest for productivity and efficiency will ensure that technology continues to proliferate in every facet of our professional and personal lives.

Whether you are a business leader or individual contributor, figuring out how to keep your value proposition relevant is going to be critical for your ongoing survival. Just like many other cycles in business, the integration of technology is going to require, in fact demand, contextualization from human beings.

Over the next several weeks, I am going to release the 7 principles. Since each one of these principles has its own unique attributes I am going to release them individually with the caveat that they are all interdependent and require synchronicity and harmony between all.

If you are not great at all seven then you are going to be beaten, commoditized and disrupted by someone who has mastered these seven principles. What I mean is you can’t be great at six of these principles and suck at one and expect to earn customers, have them buy more, stay longer and positively tell others, unless you are equally great at each and every one of the seven principles.

Personalization Principle #1: Authenticity

Pure authenticity is the exact opposite of fake. Do you want to deal with someone who is fake? Do you want to give your money to someone who puts their needs before you? Do you want to have interactions with a company, a team or a person who cares more about themselves than your expectations?

If you truly want to stand out today, if you want to be seen as someone who is a great teammate, if you want to be seen as someone who is promotable and seen as someone who is the “go to” girl or guy, then authenticity should be at the core of everything you do.

Let’s face it, there are too many fakers, posers and self-interested people that it is refreshing and rare when you have an opportunity to interact with someone who treats you with empathy and authenticity. If you are not authentic, then you are pretty much as useful as a doormat.

Do you know how important authentic acknowledgement is? One of the most unused and under appreciated skills and business tools is the power of an authentic acknowledgement.

Regardless of if:
• you are thanking an awesome customer for sharing their story about what it is like to be your customer
• you are thanking your team for their awesome efforts
• you are praising your child for proactively finishing their homework
• any of the other unlimited possibilities where acknowledgement can get you more of what you want

I believe one of the most important things to remember is that if you are going to acknowledge someone, when you are doing it in person, there is nothing more powerful, personalized or authentic than eye contact.

I know that human beings crave authentic, personalized, hassle-free interactions.

I am still puzzled today after the millions and millions of books, trainings and tapes that have been disseminated that there is still such a lack of authentic, positive, sincere acknowledgement used in business today.

In today’s fast-paced environment with iPhones, tablets, Kindles, BlackBerrys, wearables, apps and a million other things, a personalized, authentic, friendly thank you can make someone’s day or even week!

People don’t get enough authenticity in their interactions with other human beings.

Find out more about the 7 Personalization Principles here or buy the book on Amazon.

Authenticity 7PP

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There is a Lack of Soft Skills and it’s Costing Millions

There is a Lack of Soft Skills and it’s Costing Millions

Companies across the U.S. say it is becoming increasingly difficult to find applicants who can communicate clearly, take initiative, problem-solve and get along with co-workers.

Those traits, often called soft skills, can make the difference between an exceptional contributor and one who just gets by.

While such skills have always appealed to employers, decades-long shifts in the economy have made them especially crucial now.

Companies have automated or outsourced many routine tasks, and the jobs that remain often require workers to take on broader responsibilities that demand critical thinking, empathy or other abilities that computers can’t easily simulate.

Leveraging these 7 Personalization Principles will allow both individual contributors and organizations to thrive.

The 7 personalization principles are:
1. Be Authentic. Are you real and genuine in everything you do? Authentic people speak the truth and communicate openly with their colleagues.
2. Be Hospitable. Do you make your colleagues and customers feel welcome at every touch point? Start with a positive attitude.
3. Be Empathetic. Can you understand and share the feelings of another human being? When you have empathy for your colleagues and customers, you are better able to make decisions that are fair for both parties.
4. Be Committed. Are you willing to do whatever it takes, no matter what? Being committed means living your values each and every day, even when it’s uncomfortable or inconvenient.
5. Be Competent. Do you have the skills and ability to excel in your role? Being competent means you are enabled with the learning and skills to do your job well and solve your customer’s problems.
6. Be Friendly. Friendliness is learned at a young age. Being nice and friendly to your colleagues and customers can create decades of loyalty.
7. Be Fun. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Having fun at work can de-escalate stressful situations and make interactions with colleagues and customers much more fulfilling.

A recent LinkedIn survey of 291 hiring managers found 58% say the lack of soft skills among job candidates is limiting their company’s productivity.

In a Wall Street Journal survey of nearly 900 executives last year, 92% said soft skills were equally important or more important than technical skills.

To find out more about how to deliver the soft skills that your workforce needs to protect themselves from automation check out my latest book The Seven Personalization Principles: Learn the Principles to Thrive in these Disruptive Times on Amazon or read more about it here.