Archive for Management

Is there a difference between being nice and being kind?

My daughters are one and two years old. They are beautiful, fun, smart, creative and the absolute joys of my life. They are also perfectly normal toddlers who test boundaries and are learning and growing every single day. My wife and I work on teaching them little things such as how to be told “No” with out losing your mind or crying (still working on that) as well as how to dress themselves, use the potty, etc.

While we work on the basics like the alphabet, but our biggest focus
right now is helping them learn how to be kind.

I believe kindness is one of the most important traits you can have, no matter what your job is, where your life takes you, or whom you interact with.  If you are kind that is by far one of the most important things. Think about it…lets say you are at a store and have a request that the salesperson can not meet. The way you will feel about the experience totally depends on whether or not the person is kind to you. Either way, for whatever reason you are not able to get what you want, but if the person treats you with kindness you will still leave with a good impression. If your manager has to give you negative feedback and if they do it with kindness then you will be more likely to take the feedback in a positive way and improve your work…which will ultimately positively impact your career.

So we have taught our girls through our actions and our words how to treat others, including yourself, with kindness. After hearing my wife remind our daughter to “please be kind” for the 19th time this morning I started thinking…is there a difference between being nice and being kind? Most people would say it is the same or use the terms interchangeably, but I believe there is a big difference.

Some people are nice because it’s what they are “supposed to do” or they do it because they have to…but not because it is what is in their heart. I have heard of people being called “fake nice” but I have never heard someone be called “fake kind”.

I believe being nice is what you do but being kind is who you are.

I don’t want my girls being nice to each other just because I’m watching. I want them to treat each other with kindness because they understand the value of kindness and they want to share joy with another person.

In the workplace managers need the employees to treat everyone with kindness regardless of whom they are serving or who is watching. If employees only serve others with kindness when the manager is standing close by, then the team and the business will crumble quickly.

How do managers (and parents)
encourage kindness?

1. They reward it when they see it. Immediately.

If you see someone doing a behavior you want them to repeat then drop whatever you are doing (if possible) and compliment them.
It will have more of an impact when it’s fresh in their memory and they will want to repeat the behavior.

2. They model it themselves  – be an example.

This is HUGE. People will learn more from your actions  than your words. Is this well known advice?
Yes. Does every one need a reminder of it? Absolutely. When you need something, how do you ask your employee for it?
Are you respectful? Polite? Make sure your actions are modeling what you want done. Be aware.

3. Don’t ignore bad behavior.

In the same way, if you see something you want, then you should immediately praise it, but if you are seeing things you don’t want happening then you need to address it as quickly as possible. Just make sure you do the correcting in private.

Praise in public, correct in private. When you offer correction, do it in a respectful way. You don’t want to make someone feel bad but instead create a learning opportunity. Compliment them on a few things that you like about them or what they do and then present the situation to them and ask how they could have handled it differently and help them come up with a few ideas. When people come up with the solutions themselves in a positive way they are much more likely to actually implement them.

My challenge for you today is this, are you treating others with kindness?

What do you believe the difference between being kind and being nice? Let me know in the comments and thoughts on my facebook page (www.facebook.com/samglenn7)

Have a good week!

Sam

Sam Glenn's Postcard Club

“Sam Glenn delivered a memorable, rousing, infectious and educational message to our attendees.  He was the perfect closing session speaker, leaving our attendees energized with a “new” attitude.”

– Lorraine Okabe, Director of Education and Conferences, League of California Cities

Excellence In Property Management Starts with Attitude  

We had moved from Chicago to Carmel Indiana with expectations of starting a family and getting settled. We decided to rent first and explore the area before we buy.   I won’t go into all the details of the situation, but we rented a 2 bedroom 2 bath apartment.   Now, get ready to have your skin cringe when I tell you that in just over a year we had close to 40 maintenance issues – ranging from an air conditioner and furnace which wouldn’t function to faulty wiring that would spark and smoke when you turned the light off. And those are just the minor issues.

My wife and I are positive people, so we kept thinking with each thing they fixed, it would be the end of the chaos.  But, what we learned was the reality of the definition of insanity, which is hoping it will get better when in reality,  nothing is changing.

One day, I stepped outside on our balcony
to get some fresh air and it was wobbly.

Come to find out a few more wobbles and I would be on the ground, two stories below, it was that unstable.   It ended up being a  city violation that they had never properly addressed. It took multiple calls to get the problem fixed because no one wanted to take responsibility for it properly getting fixed. Each person we talked too would say all of the right things, “we are so sorry, we will make sure it gets fixed right away.” Except they didn’t, they just let us fall through the cracks and no one wanted to take the time to make sure it was quickly and properly fixed.  When it finally got fixed we were promised we would not have any more experiences like that.

Did they get better?  NO.

We were basically forced to move because things just kept getting worse.  Our hot water heater would break multiple times a month and our toilet would flush by it self and had such a significant leak that it resulted in extremely high water bills. Neither of these issues were fixed in one, two, or even three calls.   When the property management company found out what I do for a living they asked me not to disparage their company. Which as a professional I would never call out a specific company. I don’t need to trash another business to build my own.   But I found it extremely interesting that instead of trying to get better and learn from their mistakes their solution was to try and brush it under the rug, hide it, and keeping going on making the same mistakes and providing the same sub-par service.

Now, you might think we moved into a thousand year old apartment that was a fixer upper.  Nope, we moved into a beautiful place in an incredible location, but despite all that, the attitude of the company was all wrong.  And it all starts with attitude.

The positive is now I can share the experience with other property management groups as what not to do and these groups can use my experience to improve and grow their own companies.  I had no idea that my experience would turn into a profit and positive for my wife and I and so many others.  It wasn’t fun at the time, but property management groups hire me year after year to come back and talk with their company staff and share fresh ideas on how to build business, service customers and go to the next level with their goals.

Excellence in property management - training by Sam GlennNow, let me highlight, we did not ask for 40 maintenance issues or do anything to be treated poorly.  We were always polite and tried to be understanding when we raised our concerns because we wanted good service. But when you have poor leadership, that becomes the culture and the brand.  It is what you become known for.

Let me share a few ideas that will bring a ton of value to your property management organization.  Some seem simple and small, but in reality they are huge.

  1. High internal turnover is never a good sign.  If you have high turnover, it means people are not connecting with leadership or finding purpose in what they are doing.   If they are doing a poor job from the get go, then the hiring process needs to be worked on.  If you want to cut costs, then you need to cut turn over. One of a companies single largest expenses is training new people, and if people are continually leaving after a short time you are losing time and money.  When an employee doesn’t feel valued or challenged or is not given the tools or power to do their job they will leave for something better. And if they feel that way and stick around you can be confident they are not doing a great job or providing quality service.
  2. Customer service is everyone’s job.  When you have maintenance guys driving around on a golf cart around the property and they drive past a tenant, teach them to be friendly and smile.  Teach everyone the fundamentals of common sense customer service.  This should come from the top down. It is every single persons job to provide great service. There is nothing new under the sun when it comes to this topic of customer service.  If you consistently apply the basics of good customer service, everybody wins.
  3. Conflict is an opportunity to build loyalty.  We had so many  issues with our apartment, that pretty soon everyone was passing the buck and didn’t want the headache of dealing with the conflict.  Step up and own the conflict and do some math regarding the situation. Not every situation is identical.  For example, if they had said, “Hey, we would like to give you a month’s worth of rent and a gift card to a nice dinner”, they could have had more issues and we would have been fine as long as they were fixed. But, they would not return our calls and when they did it was some new person who would say, “We are sorry for your experience. (Pause) We will do better next time. We want you to have a good experience”  Just as if they were reading the company handbook written by a room full of lawyers. Heck, Siri talks to me with more emotion!
  4. If you want better business, then you have to get better. When I speak at leadership events for property management groups, the reason they have me back is I light a fire in people’s hearts not under their butts.  If you want to raise excellence, you start by raising how people care and connecting them to something that brings them purpose and excitement.   Have you ever noticed people who care and love what they do end up providing the best service and are the most productive? Change the location of where you lite a fire.
  5. Do what you say you will do when you say you will do it.   If you tell someone you will email them by 3:00 PM it should not be 3:01. They should not have to follow up with you on what the situation is.   By following through and being a person of your word, it builds trust. Even if you don’t have the answer they want, communication will help build trust that you are doing everything you can.  To build better business, you need trust.  People buy from those they trust.  If you say you will do something, then own it and do it.
  6. Always offer the surprise of extra effort. Simple things like offering a discount or gift card can help turn around a poor experience. Go the extra mile to give good service. If you have to go into someones home to fix something make sure you are efficient, clean up your mess in full, and look for opportunities to go the extra mile. Offer to change a light bulb in a hard to reach place or hang a picture that is sitting on the floor.

Excellent customer service and experiences start with attitude and attitude filters from the top down. My experience may have been negative but it has helped countless organizations improve their businesses which has resulted in even more people getting great service and having  better experiences then I did. That knowledge makes everything I went through worth it and I am excited to help even more organizations grow and achieve their goals by providing excellent customer service every time, all the time.

Sam Glenn is an award winning keynote speaker and is often the highest rated speaker at every conference he speaks at.  If you are looking for an uplifting speaker that your audience will absolutely love and gain value from, then contact Sam Glenn’s office about booking him.  – Sam@samGlenn.com

4 Leadership Skills to a Positive Work Atmosphere

4 Leadership Skills to a Positive Work Atmosphere

Wе hаνе all worked in places where we grew to drеаd getting up in the morning, and a few οf υѕ hаνе hаd thе pleasure οf working fοr a boss whο mаkеѕ υѕ feel lіkе wе саn dο anything right. Lеt’s examine a few differences between a positive аnd a negative work environment.

Signs οf a Negative Work Environment

  • Thе boss іѕ unfriendly.
  • Thе boss іѕ critical.
  • Thеrе іѕ high employee turnover.
  • Thеrе іѕ low employee morale.
  • People watch thе clock.
  • People don’t gеt much performance feedback.

Sam Glenn, Leadership QuoteSigns οf a Positive Work Environment

  • Thе boss demonstrates interest іn thе employees.
  • Thе boss hаѕ аn encouraging attitude.
  • Employees lіkе working thеrе.
  • Thеrе іѕ evidence οf company pride аnd loyalty.
  • People know whеrе thеу stand wіth thеіr supervisors.

Thousands οf books hаνе bееn written οn thе subject οf managing аnd motivating people, аnd аѕ many training seminars аrе conducted οn thіѕ subject around thе world еνеrу day. And уеt іt’s іntеrеѕtіng thаt even wіth аll οf thіѕ available information, few companies succeed аt сrеаtіng a positive work environment. Why is that?  Is it really that complicated or is someone making it complicated?  My research points to someone or several who make the process difficult.  There are four simple skills that if you implement them, you will begin to experience a more positive work atmosphere.  Lеt’s see whаt’s involved.

Four Key Leadership Skills to a Positive Work Atmosphere

Crеаtіng a positive work environment іѕ based οn four key skills. Thеу аrе:

  • Tеll people whаt уου expect οf thеm.
  • Shοw interest іn уουr team members.
  • Crеаtе аn encouraging environment.
  • Recognize аnd reward gοοd performance.

Leadership Skill #1 to a Positive Work Atmosphere:

State Yουr Expectations

Telling people whаt уου expect οf thеm means doing thе following:

• Communicating expectations clearly

• Having a specific job description

• Identifying specific performance standards

• Specifying deadlines

• Setting goals

Leadership Skill #2 to a Positive Work Atmosphere:

Shοw Authentic Interest іn Yουr Team – Employees – Associates

Whаt behaviors convey thаt someone іѕ interested іn уου?

  • Mаkіng eye contact
  • Calling уου bу name
  • Asking уουr opinion
  • Smiling
  • Complimenting уουr work
  • Taking уουr suggestions

Thеѕе behaviors convey a lack οf interest:

  • Ignoring уου
  • Nοt knowing уουr name οr nοt using іt
  • Nοt asking уουr opinion
  • Ignoring уουr suggestions
  • Nοt commenting οn уουr work
  • Following уουr suggestion, bυt οnlу whеn heard frοm someone еlѕе

Such signs discourage productivity bесаυѕе thеу mаkе people feel discouraged, аngrу, less confident, аnd stripped οf self-esteem.

Leadership Skill #3 to a Positive Work Atmosphere:

Crеаtе аn Encouraging Environment

Mοѕt people wουld agree thаt аn encouraging work environment іѕ one whеrе:

  • Yουr іdеаѕ аrе valued.
  • Creativity іѕ encouraged.
  • Initiative and risks аrе encouraged.
  • Fun аnd laughter аrе accepted.
  • Nеw іdеаѕ аrе rewarded.
  • Yου feel appreciated.
  • People thank уου fοr уουr contributions.
  • Flexibility іѕ valued.
  • Yου feel lіkе раrt οf thе team.

Crеаtіng such аn environment results іn thе following benefits tο employees.

Yου:

• Contribute more іdеаѕ.

• Feel more committed.

• Look forward tο coming tο work.

• Arе more productive.

• Hаνе increased self-esteem.

• Have loyalty

Crеаtіng such аn environment results іn thе following benefits tο managers аnd business owners:

• Less turnover

• Less sabotage

• Greater loyalty

• Easier tο find employees due tο gοοd reputation

• Higher productivity

Leadership Skill #4 to a Positive Work Atmosphere:

Recognize аnd Reward Gοοd Performance

A reinforcer іѕ anything thаt happens, аftеr a behavior, thаt tends tο increase thе chances thаt thе behavior wіll bе repeated. Meaning, if you like what someone is doing, reinforce it my acknowledging the action.   Included аrе such things аѕ:

• Compliments

• Smiles

• Thumbs-up gesture – a little cheesy, but still fun to do.

• Saying “Thank уου″

• Public announcement οf уουr achievement

• Positive letter іn уουr personnel file

• Promotion

• Time οff

• Special parking space

• First сhοісе οn schedule

• Dinner wіth thе boss

• Tickets tο аn event

• Extra employee discount

• Picture οn thе bulletin board

• Applause аt a meeting

  • A gift card for gasoline
  • An all paid vacation.  (my personal choice)

Here are a few Recognition Guidelines

  1. Describe thе results уου аrе recognizing. Bе specific. It’s іmрοrtаnt tο mаkе сеrtаіn thе employee knows whаt behavior οr accomplishment уου аrе referring tο.
  2. State уουr personal appreciation. Sау, “I appreciate іt.” Adding уουr personal appreciation mаkеѕ thе compliment feel more genuine.
  3. Encourage thе person tο continue producing such gοοd work. Thіѕ increases thе chances thаt thе person wіll repeat thе desirable behavior.

Would you like a more positive work environment and the positive benefits that come along with it?

Then,  start small to get the ball rolling in the right direction by taking initiative to implement these 4 skills to a positive work environment.  Are they hard to do?  Not at all.  Can you start right now?  Yes you can!

 

This information is compiled, researched and written by Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy.   Sam is a sought after motivational speaker by companies and organizations that want to re-charge attitude’s for positive action.  Sam Glenn offers strategies that combat stress and negativity in the workplace and ideas that ramp up teamwork, communication and the right culture where people will thrive.  Sam Glenn is a great kick off or closing to any event.  Sam Glenn’s Official Website: (www.SamGlenn.com)

How Much Will a Bad Attitude Cost Your Company?

How Much Will a Bad Attitude Cost Your Company?

 

A positive attitude engaged in positive action leads to positive results. But what happens when not everyone has a positive attitude?  Have you thought of how much a bad attitude can cost your company?

Recently, I went to purchase a Television from a well know retailer.  I had an exact budget of $500.  As I browsed brands and sizes of televisions, I noticed an open box special on a TV, however it was a little more than my budget, but not by much.  I asked the sales associate if I could get it for $500.  It never hurts to ask, right?   She said, “I don’t have the authority to authorize that discount, but let me ask the store manger.”

She got on the service phone and called the manger.  We stood there waiting and then waiting some more.  Five minutes go by, then ten and then fifteen.  She excuses herself to try and call the manager again.  A short five minutes later, I see what appears to be a manager rounding the corner of the electronics aisle.    I could tell this manager was not in a good mood because as he walked around up to me and the sales associate, he exuded an attitude of negativity – like we just interrupted his day.  This is not the best way to approach a customer who represents revenue.  His negativity continues. He did not make any eye contact with me, great me with a hello, smile or seem all that interested in being helpful.  He just wanted to get on with his day as I was not a customer, but a hiccup.

First words out of his mouth were the wrong words, “What seems to be the problem?”   The sales associate explained that I had a budget of $500 and the open box was just a few dollars over my budget, but she wanted to get authorized to discount it so I could afford it.

“Without even letting the sales associate finish what she was saying, the manager rudely shook his head back and forth and said with an agitated tone,   “No, we can’t give you the discount because it has already been discounted.”  Then turns on his toes and begins to march away.

You see, what you permit is what you promote and I don’t tolerate being treated the way that manager treated me.  Before he got to the end of the aisle, I called out, “Excuse me, what is your name?”

Very defensively, he turns and points to his name tag, “I am manager Mike.”

I said, “I have money to spend today and the way you just treated me as a customer was inappropriate behavior, especially someone in a leadership role as yourself.  The difference between you and I is that I represent revenue for this company and you represent an expense.  Treating customers how you just did is how you lose revenue.  Would you agree with that manger Mike?”

Manager Mike didn’t really appreciate my valuable leadership training.  The bottom line is, I walked into this large retailer to spend hard earned money which translates into revenue and profit for the company.  Manager Mike’s bad attitude cost the company the sale.  I don’t give money to companies that treat me bad and nor should you.  What manager Mike didn’t realize is that as a customer, it doesn’t matter how big of a retail chain you are, I as a single customer hold the power to “FIRE” your entire company at my choosing.  I do that when I choose not to buy from you anymore.

Now, whoever trained manager Mike forgot to mention that attitude determines sales, customer care, leadership and success.  Or they didn’t put enough emphasis or priority into attitude training that the consequence is lost revenue.  This begs the accountability question, who should be held accountable for any employee associate in the workplace that acts in a manner that creates negative circumstances as manager Mike did?

Now to a big retailer like this, you might think it is not a big deal.  Well I happen to know for a fact that this company cut out their attitude wellness programs because of budget issues.  Was it the best choice for them?  Let’s do some math and we will see.  In a recent customer service survey, they this international retailer was rated next to last next to tech support.  It gets better.  To justify why stock prices have dropped to the shareholders, the CEO is quoted as saying “People are just running out money.”

People may be tight on money these days, which means they are getting smarter about how they shop and where.  In an effort to generate more income to raise the stock price, this retailer decided it would cater to “gun enthusiast” by selling guns in more of their stores.  Are you getting the math yet?

If you were going to do anything to generate revenue for your organization and you are ranked almost dead last in customer service, it shouts, “Get a clue.  Bad attitudes are an expense that will cost you profits.”

My $500 lost sale may not have been much to this retailer, but let’s just say you duplicate my experience which I had with them and put that in 5000 of their stores.  And then let’s do some math; take one employee associate from every store who treats a customer in a negative way only one day out of the year and it costs the store $500 in lost revenue.  How much does that come out to be?  $2,500,000 a year.   Can you believe that a bad attitude could cost that much?  What if we change it up a bit and say 5 bad attitudes cost the store $500 each 5 days a year in 5000 stores.  A bad attitude equals: $62,500,000. Wow! That number is insane and is a result of bad attitudes in the workplace.  It doesn’t really matter how you calculate the scenario, a bad attitude will cost your company a small fortune and if a big retailer like the one I am highlighting, a good size fortune.  Does it make sense to develop and make some sort of attitude wellness program part of training procedures?

Understanding and implementing this philosophy into your company can save you a good chunk of change.  When you mix the right attitude into your efforts, skills and knowledge, you work to achieve the right results.  The bottom line is this:  A positive attitude will do more for you and through you than a negative attitude will.  If you are not investing a little time and effort into ensuring that the right attitude is being distributed by employees, you will invest a fortune fixing the mess that a bad attitude creates.  It’s not about wearing a slogan on your vest, shirt as much as it is actually living up to that slogan through your attitude and actions.  Words don’t mean anything unless you can back them up.  It is deception when your uniform says you care, but bad attitude clearly says you don’t.  It is the responsibility of leadership to make sure that their people have the right tools and guidance in order to develop, maintain and serve others with a better attitude.

This information is compiled, researched and written by Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy.   Sam is a sought after keynote motivational speaker by companies and organizations that want to re-charge attitude’s for positive action to achieve positive results.  Sam Glenn’s Speeches and Motivational Books offer strategies that combat stress and negativity in the workplace and ideas that ramp up teamwork, communication and a positive culture where people will thrive.  Sam Glenn is a great kick off speaker or closing to any event.  Sam Glenn’s Official Website: (www.SamGlenn.com)

4 Customer Service Tips for Airlines

4 Customer Service Tips for Airlines

People often remark that traveling must be fun for me because I travel close to 200 days a year.   There are some perks, but over all travel has become work.   Unless you have any kind of status with an airline, you can be expected to be treated close to or around average.  When I lived in Chicago, I flew American Airlines and achieved the status of Executive Platinum.  Now that I moved to Indianapolis, the airport is new and awesome, but I have to fly other airlines that I have no status with.  It is tough when you realize you have to work more or fly more in order to achieve a level where a company will treat you exceptional.   I am not alone in this view as many road warriors can attest to this fact.

Every little action is either making your company great or not.   That is why it is important to remember the fundamentals that make your company great.  And really, they are the little things that work best.

What prompted me to write this article with the constancy of being treated poorly by airlines that I don’t have status with the exception of Air Tran.  They actually impressed me.  I never really thought much of this airline before until I flew them to Orlando.  Air Tran was impressive by the quality of service from when you check in to boarding the airplane.  Even thought I didn’t have status, they treated me as if I did.  I like that!

Now most airlines from a public relations stand point would argue that customers can make their job tough.  I won’t argue that at all.  Some customers are just rude and have no clue what is going on.   They can test a person’s attitude on a dime.  However, there are simple acts of customer service that will create experiences that build on making your company firm and stable.

Here are my 4 Best Tips for Customer Service for Airlines, but any organization can apply these same principles and achieve success.

1.        Just Be Nice. 

When I check in, don’t act like I am a burden, but act like you are glad to see me.  Fake it if you have too, I don’t care.  Maybe offer up a little eye contact or a smile.  I would even settle for half a smile.  How hard is that?  Not hard at all.  Sure a lot of people are waiting to get checked in, but is it any really extra effort to be nice?  No.   Who should do this?  Anyone who interacts with customers.

2.        Communicate Better.

Since I don’t have status with many airlines, I normally am one of the last people to board the plane, which means overhead bins are most likely full.   Before people board, be sure to offer the option to check carry on pieces to the destination.   It is embarrassing when you carry your bag on all the way to row 99 and all the bins are full and people are waiting to get by you and you have nowhere to go. So you have to fuddle around until you can carry your bag all the way back to the front to check it.   If people are walking on the plane and you notice they have a luggage that is going to be tight and not fit well, then tell them and give them the quick option to check it right there.  Speed is the key when you have a schedule to keep, so keeping open and consistent communication is vital.

3.       Don’t let your Individual attitude get in the way.

If you are having a bad day, don’t let the chip on your shoulder turn into an experience that makes customers feel uncomfortable and makes you look unprofessional.   You are there to do a job and to do it with the right attitude.  Leave your emotional junk at the door.  I didn’t buy a ticket to deal your junk, so don’t try to dump it on me.   If you feel like you might lose your cool, take a few minutes to drink some water, breathe and release negative tension.  Splash some water on your face.   But don’t’ scream at customers or chug a beer and pull the emergency slide.   If you need to, seek professional help to learn how to manage your emotions so you are not reactive and unpleasant.    Remember, a positive attitude gets better results than a negative one.  So do what it takes to get a positive attitude.

4.        Be Aware and Be Willing to Jump In.

I was at the Las Vegas airport and the lines were long. They normally are there.  I got into the First Class Line to check in and even though I didn’t have a first class ticket, I was going to inquire about an upgrade to get one.  When I stepped up, the customer service agent checked and informed that there were no first class upgrades.   Now here is where it gets interesting.  There was nobody behind me in line.  The customer service agent could have printed my boarding pass in less than 60 seconds.  However, she was not willing to jump in and help out.  She actually created more work for her co-workers, made the airline look bad and created an experience that was unpleasant.   She said if I wanted to check in, that I had to go stand in line with general boarding.  And I fully understand that is the process normally, however, if she had awareness she would have observed the general boarding lines where very long and there was nobody standing in the first class line to check in.   She could have helped out, but she complicated things and was very rude to me when I tried to figure out her lack of common sense to the situation.   I went to general boarding and waited.  Finally when it was my turn to check in, I asked the customer service agent if she could fix my ticket to get me on a different flight to get home earlier.  She was willing to help. She had to go into the back to fix a glitch in the system and as I waited, there was the customer service agent just sitting there doing nothing as her co-workers were working.  Observing this behavior made me realize it’s not always the airline as a whole that is the negative, but rather individuals who choose to be and act negative.   Would I hire a person like that?  Not in a million years.  Would I fire a person like that?  In a minute.

Having awareness is being keen on your environment and being willing is to jump in where you can help your co-workers and create a positive experience for the customer.

Are these customer service tips hard to do?  Not at all.  Do they contribute to achieving success? You bet.

This information is compiled, researched and written by Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy.   Sam is a sought after motivational speaker by companies and organizations that want to re-charge attitude’s for positive action.  Sam Glenn offers strategies that combat stress and negativity in the workplace and ideas that ramp up teamwork, communication and the right culture where people can thrive. 

5 Habits of Positive People in the Workplace

5 Habits of Positive People in the Workplace

There are certain habits that positive people consistently demonstrate in the workplace.   These habits help them deal with the day to day up and downs.  They seem balanced and level headed when dealing with the office negatives which can boil down to a situation with a co-worker or boss.   Habits are what we do over and over again.  Implementing positive habits and taking notes from the example that positive people in the workplace demonstrate has tremendous value.

Habit # 1 of Positive People in the Workplace:  They are not overly reactive to bad news. 

Only a drama queen is a fan of drama.  Being positive doesn’t mean that you are blind to adverse information, but rather positive people in the workplace process this information and look for the best options to address it and move forward.  They know that reacting in a negative way will make a situation worse.  They understand that drama creates a negative environment, but thinking clearly and creatively always accomplishes more.

Habit # 2 of Positive People in the Workplace: They make their attitude their choice and don’t leave it to chance.

They understand the importance of attitude and it shows from the moment they walk in the door.  They are not complaining about this or that, but they are making an effort to set the tone for their day by choosing an attitude that achieves positive results.

Habit # 3 of Positive People in the Workplace: They keep a distance from negative people.

Positive people in the workplace have boundaries in place when it comes to dealing with negative co-workers.  Have you ever worked with a negative person or perhaps are working with them right now?  They are so negative that if you give them a bouquet of flowers at 8 am, the flowers will turn into a cactus by noon.  I think we all have worked with that person, but in order to stay positive in the workplace you have to establish boundaries with negativity.   The picture of that looks like this:  You are not engaged in wasting time going back and forth with a negative person.  You are not engaging in any extra time with them other than what is necessary to get the job done.   And if someone is stepping over the line, a positive person will look for the best options to address the negative behavior so it doesn’t affect production or teamwork.

Habit # 4 of Positive People in the Workplace: They do the right things.

Positive people in the workplace are not standing around wasting time talking about office politics or making negative gossip.  They know that if you say something bad about others, it will come back and bite you later.  They also work with a level of integrity.  They are not cutting corners or misleading customers.

Habit # 5 of Positive People in the Workplace: They give their best.

Positive people engaged in positive actions leads to positive results.  Everyone wants the best results possible and the positive person in the workplace understands that if they are going to achieve these results, there is only one pathway that will make that happen and it is showing up every day and giving your best.  They don’t complain, but rather make the best use of the resources they have.

 

This information is compiled, researched and written by Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy.   Sam is a sought after speaker by companies and organizations that want to re-charge attitude’s for positive action.  Sam Glenn offers strategies that combat stress and negativity in the workplace and ideas that ramp up teamwork, communication and the right culture where people will thrive.

11 Sure-Fire Ways to Revive Spirit in the Workplace

The Attitude Guy™

Reviving spirit in the workplace is like starting the wave at a major sporting event.  The process is a little uncomfortable at first and often met with rejection, criticism, and sometimes failure.

Before we get into the “how-tos” of reviving spirit in the workplace, let’s define it:

reviving spiritSpirit is the atmosphere and attitude of a place or
situation that influences  effort and attitude in its people.

In 2011, I gave close to 100 speeches on the subject of attitude to organizations who told me before their events, “We really want to revive a positive spirit in the workplace so our people will do better, or continue to do well.”

Reviving spirit in the workplace is about creating awareness that excellence still matters. Teamwork still makes the dream work. Positive communication is a must. And profit, productivity, and performance rely on attitude and effort.

The spirit in the workplace can often turn negative when others are impacted by decisions and issues that are out of their control. This might include: corporate downsizing, understaffing, budget reductions, and upper-management decisions that adversely impact employees.

Here are a Few Ideas on How to Revive Spirit in the Workplace:

Read More →

This is My Two-Week Notice

There are many things that can cause someone to put in a two week notice, but the one reason it should never be is because the company failed to take care of their people.  Organizations will lose more on the bottom line in turnover than lack of sales when they fail to take care of producing employees.

If I was a manager and got a two-week notice from a “producer” in my company because I didn’t manage or treat him or her right, then it would be my fault and a huge…HUGE loss to the company.

This is becoming a current trend in the marketplace. Here is me saying this NICELY…Some managers lead with their head up their butt and wonder why they get crappy results. There is no other way to put that in a kind way.  I recently got an email from a “producer” with another organization and it was to vent on how poorly her company treats those who work hard, put in 10 to 12 hour days, and live up to the standard only to get disrespected in the bottom line of things.

If you have a role of business owner or manager of a department and it requires you to lead others, I implore you to read the following and let it soak in real good. When you lose a producer because you failed to do the SIMPLE THINGS, then it will cost you and your organization an arm and a leg longterm.

So, I asked this person what did her organization or leadership do that lost her as a producer?

Here are the answers… Read More →

What is the True Cost of Personal and Professional Development in the Workplace?

I recently learned that a certain large retailer was cutting professional development from outside sources. And this kinda saddened me, as I have always been a big fan of this retailer.

Is it good to slash prices and cut development corners? In a moment, I am going to show you some math that will blow your mind: the cost of keeping professional development versus cutting it. Employee development is an easy cut when you are trying to brighten the bottom line; but does it really pay?

One of the objectives in our organization is to brighten the bottom line by improving the people who provide services and distribute products. But, along the way, the distributor or representative of the service or product can diminish the bottom line so much that we miss it, if those team members are not developed and nurtured. Most organizations do miss out, if this area is cut. A lack of employee development is what I refer to as “the invisible bottom feeder of bottom lines.”

I am about to share with you a simple story of what happens when the invisible bottom feeder of bottom lines attacks. I truly think that if the owner of this retailer was alive, he would nip this in the bud. He cared about people and was passionate about his business. That is the spirit of a successful entrepreneur. I think if he caught wind of the story I am about to share, it might actually cause him to do a flip in his grave. You be the judge.

I walked into this retailer recently with $500 cash and the sole purpose of buying a new TV for the house. However, when I inquired about an open-box item to get a lesser price, I had to wait for 25 minutes for a manager to approve it. I was fine either way. If I got the discount, great! If I didn’t, that’s okay, I still wanted a TV for the house.

I waited with a sales associate for 25 minutes who could have been productive with the time, but instead waited on a “bad attitude” manager to show up. How did I know it was a bad attitude manager? The same way you would. We all know when we are being treated with a bad attitude or a positive one. Instead of saying, “Hi,” or greeting me with a smile or, “How can I help you?” I got, “What seems to be the problem?” in an ornery tone.

The sales associate said, “There is no problem. This gentleman wants to buy a TV, and wanted to see if he could get a little bit off this open box item?”

The manager responded with an immediate, “No, it’s been discounted. No!” And proceeded to walk away.

As a customer, even if this was the store policy, I don’t like being treated as if there is no empathy for my side, no interest in hearing me out.

As a fan of this retailer, and one of the top leading experts on professional development in the country, I notice when employees do not practice positive attitudes in action. I channeled the founder of this store and stopped that dude in his tracks. I began gently to address his performance with me, a customer. He did not take kindly to my positive instruction that would have made him look good, his company great, and his bottom line improved. And I didn’t even charge him for the wisdom. I am not cheap one bit!

Did I buy the TV at this store? No way! I have a philosophy that says I don’t give my money to people who treat me poorly. They didn’t earn it, they didn’t deserve it, and so I went somewhere else and even paid more for someone who treated me with respect, as if I am important. (You get my vibe?)

Now, the number #1 excuse from organizations that have situations like this, “Sir, it is a one-time isolated incident.”

Since I don’t buy BS or lies, I disagree. The manager who treated me poorly may be having a tough day, or maybe he didn’t understand good customer relations. It doesn’t mean he is a bad guy, but just that he doesn’t grasp that a bad attitude put into action in the game of business will eat the bottom line.

Let’s do the math. This is a story that the main organization was not made aware of. Lack of awareness is the killer of profits. Let me explain. It is hard to track every “one time isolated incident;” but what if in reality it was just a one-time thing? What if this manager treated one customer this poorly, every day for one year. Let’s do the math:

Customer with a budget of $500.

A negative manager who treats customer with $500 poorly.

Customer chooses to go next door to a local competitor to spend $500, instead of being treated poorly.

X 365 days.

= $182,500 in lost business and sales.

As you can see, attitude plays a huge role in the bottom line. However, when you don’t treat it as such, then the deficit adds up.

Now, let’s take this math problem even further.

This retailer employs thousands of people. But, let’s say for only example purposes, that 100 people out of thousand treated a customer badly every day for a year.  Here is the math:

100 customers with a budget of $500

100 bad attitude employees

X 365 days

= $18,250,000

It costs the company MILLONS! And this is a conservative number based on only 100 negative people. A negative person in the workplace is defined as someone who:

a. Doesn’t care much

b. Just wants a paycheck

c. Is not really engaged

d. Badmouths the company

e. Complains all the time

f. Doesn’t take initiative, has to be told what to do.

g. Doesn’t care about consequences to attitude and actions.

h. Believes they don’t get paid enough for what they do.

i. Treats customers from mediocre to bad.

j. Lacks passion and enthusiasm for what they are doing.

And I am sure we could go on, but these are elements of a negative person in the workplace.

Think about it, how much is this costing your company? Hmmm?

Most organizations overlook this one invisible aspect of how the bottom line is affected, because it is deemed immeasurable. That is not true. We just did the numbers. In a tough economy, it is wise to invest in professional development that STICKS or STINKS?

So, if the founder of this retailer were to look at these numbers, what do you think he might say? Do?

Think about what “one” negative attitude is costing your company.  Is it worth it to invest in something that kills the invisible bottom feeder of bottom lines? Just ask successful organizations that invest in their people in the right way. It is that simple; however, I am to think that someone somewhere along the way complicated this great simplicity. Want a better bottom line? The solution is simple.

How can you provide better service today?

Snow Day: Does Your Company REALLY Care About You?

How do you know your company cares about you? Is it in the benefits or just the simple little things?

Recently, a friend of mine texted me that her company would not let the employees go home. Basically, the word was that there was still work to be done. The day before, everyone received a memo that there was no excuse to be late and leave early.

So what’s the problem? The town she lives in is having the worst snow storm reported in almost 30 years. The roads are bad, and my friend was not only upset that the commute home would be several hours, but she was concerned for her safety. Visibly looking out the window, she saw the snow coming down and heard all the news channels giving firm warnings, “If you don’t have to travel, stay in.”

So, what is a sign your company cares about you more than just as an employee—but as a person? …When the company does the right things by you and for your safety. In a snow storm that could threaten lives, this means sending families home to make snowmen with their kids. My friend’s employer is just a medium-sized company that sells stuff.  However, the sales manager felt that if you left, you were a wimp and really didn’t want to succeed.

I am going to be crystal clear when I say this, so there is no misunderstanding me: this is a selfish company, and one acting from a place of pure ignorance. It is in moments like these that you discover the true character of your organization. When a company doesn’t have your welfare in hindsight, you are not viewed as valuable, but as a means to end.

The sad truth is there are so many companies who act in this fashion that the people who work for them do so with a sense of, “I am here to get a paycheck.” And as a result, the company loses buy-in through vanishing loyalty, commitment, engagement and passion from the very people who clock in every day. This is how companies lose so much money—by treating the very people that work there in a poor way. It makes you wonder what kind of product or service you will get as a customer. If the employees are being treated with disregard, then what do you think you as the customer will be treated as?

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