Tag Archives: people

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people resist change

How to Manage People Who Resist Change

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Change is happening all around us. Despite any opposition, despite feelings and emotions change is happening. In the workplace, how do you manage the people who resist change?

Announce the new marketing plan, a strategic direction, or personnel changes, and people will disagree. It isn’t the exception, it is what is common.

Listen and Learn

The people who resist change can tell us a lot. First, they self-identify, which is a management bonus right up front. Second, we have to listen carefully. They may have some good points. When properly managed, they can actually help strengthen the change.

What often happens is that those responsible to manage or those responsible to engage with the naysayers attempt to smooth over the change, make everyone happy, and find some neutral ground, compromise.

Will Compromise Work

Compromise seems logical. It feels like the right thing to do. Until no matter how hard or how much you bend, shape, and twist the change there always seems to be another argument about why it isn’t the right direction.

Of course, there is always the possibility that they are correct. Maybe it is a bad move. Perhaps, but when you work around the naysayers long enough you may discover that it is the same people regardless of the change.

It is a pattern. Goals aren’t being achieved, problems are occurring, measurements are accurate but the indications are clear that something needs to change. Still, the naysayers find a reason to resist. Management tries to find a way to appease.

People Who Resist Change

So how can you make everyone happy? It could be that what really makes the naysayers happy is to express that they aren’t happy. They want a voice. They want to be heard. Objections and criticism give them a platform.

The dynamics of any change are situational and circumstantial. However, sometimes the best way to make the naysayers happy is to give them their platform and keep moving forward.

Certainly, it is a delicate balance of knowing, understanding, and making good decisions when you are responsible for the outcomes. Listen carefully and learn, sometimes though you just need to keep moving.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Media impacts culture

How Media Impacts Culture and Climate

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Hustle and bustle every day, some people talk about the push, others about the pull. Your organizational culture is impacted by social climate. Have you thought about how media impacts culture?

Media is exploding. It isn’t just the daily paper anymore. In fact, it hasn’t been the daily paper for some time.

Information Sources

Media is available everywhere, consider these sources and impacts:

  • YouTube video
  • Political tweet
  • A Facebook argument
  • Niche satellite radio channels
  • Podcasts
  • Newspapers
  • On-line news
  • Libraries
  • Tabloids
  • Magazines
  • Non-business LinkedIn content
  • Business LinkedIn content
  • Billboards
  • AM/FM Radio
  • Talk shows
  • Television news
  • Books
  • College classrooms
  • Email chains
  • Blogs
  • Vlogs
  • Pinterest favorites
  • Word of mouth
  • World of mouth

When you consider how marketing and social climate impact culture you’ll quickly recognize that the call to action you hope for and the one you get may be completely different. When you ask why, consider the vast amount media sources that affect your environment.

Marketing and Action

Organizational culture has never been more important and social climate impacts never more profound. The constant stream of infiltration by marketers and the press doesn’t come from one or two sources.

Getting information is easy. Digesting information and execution is far more challenging.

What springs your team into action? What will cause them to leap, understand what is urgent, and get into a positive rhythm?

Media Impacts Culture

Does culture shape the media or is media shaping the culture?

There are videos running at gas pumps, charging stations, and in the elevator. Smartphones and electronic tablets are everywhere. People, compelled by moving parts and flashy content repeated over and over again may create a culture.

People will connect with what interests them and the source doesn’t matter so much when the content is compelling.

Media impacts culture.

Is part of your business media?

Maybe it should be.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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customer service problems

Showing Up For Customer Service Problems

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Our mind-set is powerful. What we think, feel, and believe, it drives our choices and decisions. Often, once we are set in our ways and it is hard to change. It’s the teach an old dog a new trick kind of thing. Do you have a culture of customer service problems, or a culture of the customer experience?

Conflict is an interesting word because most people automatically steer towards the negative. They consider situations or circumstances that are undesirable, things to avoid, and conversations to not have. However, conflict or disagreement, when properly managed may have a good side.

Problems or a Culture?

When you think about customer service in your organization, do you only think of the resolution? Do you think of the department that manages the problems, fixes errors, and tries to make the customer feel good? What is the mind-set, should you be thinking differently?

Customer service should not be about a problem resolution department, it should be about an organizational culture. When it is about culture, everything is about the customer before the sale, after the sale, and should anything go wrong, of course, it should be about problem resolution.

Customer service isn’t what you show on the outside, it is about what starts internally and is reflected externally. People have already bought into the political correctness of the customer being right, that isn’t what shapes the customer experience.

The question may become, “When do you show up for the customer?”

Customer Service Problems

Certainly, many people may decide to show up when there is an expressed need. The wrong product was shipped, the product broke, or the service paid for didn’t produce the correct outcome. This invites people to show up.

Other people may show up before there is an expressed need. The idea is that they will build the relationship, build for the order, the referral, or the payoff that will arrive later.

There are also people and organizations that are always there. They show up just because they want to. Perhaps they need nothing, perhaps they aren’t specifically trying to close a deal, they show up because it is what they want to do. It is their mind-set.

Show Up More Often

In business, we always have to think about the return on investment. True, it may feel expensive to always just be there, but your organization shouldn’t only show up for the customer service problems.

What causes your organization and people to show up for the customer is about culture.

At least, it should be.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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conference networking

Conference Networking, What Is Your Strategy?

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Today I’m speaking in Grapevine, Texas for the National Association of Credit Management. Much of the article below originally appeared as an article I wrote for Business Credit, the February 2017 issue. Are you skilled at Conference Networking? What is your strategy?

Another conference or business meeting, you arrive, you go to the registration table, and wait patiently for your turn to watch the check-in person search for your name tag. You get a lanyard, maybe a sticker or two, some program materials, and a bag to carry your stuff around for the next few days. You have arrived.

What you do next will determine the amount of success you achieve from this event. Certainly you’ll intend to learn something, have some food, and meet a few people, but have you considered identifying specific goals? Have you mapped out what sessions you’ll attend, what you want to learn more about, or how many people you want to add to your network?

Have you thought about your social prowess, how you’ll connect and engage with people you might already know and especially how you’ll approach meeting someone new?

Some people argue that our society is becoming less social. They argue that the younger generations are more connected to their telephones or technology than actually building personal or professional relationships. What do you think?

I believe our definition of social is changing, I believe the depth and understanding of our professional relationships are changing, and I definitely believe that some people are taking full advantage of the opportunities presented by this changing environment and others are watching from the sidelines still trying to sort through what will become their next move.

I believe you have to get strategic.

Conference Networking

Conferences and other live face-to-face events represent a wonderful opportunity to grow your network, but you probably won’t achieve much growth by only watching.

Let’s start at the beginning, what are your goals for the event? Yes, goals, I’m sure you’ve probably heard the meme, “what gets measured, gets done.” If you’re going to make the most of this opportunity you’re going to need a few goals, and you’re going to have to consider both strategy and tactics to accomplish them.

Here are a few things to consider:

  1. Number of new people to meet. You probably should have a number in mind. This can be as simple as two or three, or many multiples of that number. If you are going to be at an event for multiple days it probably is a good idea to have a daily goal.
  2. Strengthening relationships with past acquaintances. Whether you are a first timer at this event, or coming back for your fifth consecutive year it might be valuable to circle back to someone you’ve met in the past. This also applies to people who you might occasionally connect with on social media, through email, or by telephone, but often lack the opportunity for the face-to-face.
  3. Who can you help? While this might seem shocking, your intentions should include a focus on whom you can help. Too often people are only interested in meeting someone who can do something for them, and are not often considering what they can do for others. Make sure at least part, if not all of your outreach has an element of what you can do to help someone else. Your network will live, or not, by the principles connected with reciprocity.
  4. Leveraging opportunities. Most conferences have built-in social time. This might be centered on breaks between sessions, meals, or other scheduled activities. Don’t miss opportunities to choose a session seat near someone you don’t know, greet someone in the lobby or conference hallway, and choose areas to be present that will allow more opportunities.
  5. What is your message or elevator speech? Make sure you have a short; one to three sentence introduction and that you are prepared to use it. However, your best success will not come from your interest to tell someone else what you do. It will come from being very interested in what they do.

Get prepared to cover the basics and then take things to the next level. The basics would include wearing your name badge, keeping your head up, smiling, being interested and inviting, carrying business cards and using them, asking for business cards from others, and suggesting the idea of continuing your connection on social media channels.

Social Media Connections

Depending on your profession and how you use social media platforms you’ll find some people who are very shy and reserved about Facebook, it might be too personal. Twitter is a great platform for high activity social media users, but your best professional platform is probably going to be LinkedIn.

Allow me to provide a brief word about LinkedIn. LinkedIn is not a platform built just for job seekers. Sure there is an element of LinkedIn that supports that, but think of LinkedIn more like Facebook for professional connections. It is not Facebook and you shouldn’t be posting pictures of your vacation, your children or grandchildren, or your favorite pet, unless of course your business has a direct connection to these events or activities. Make sure you have a profile picture (one that actually looks like you), and that you have a reasonable amount of your profile completed.

Bridging Generations

Depending on the event you may be with many professionals of a similar age, in other cases it may be very diverse. Don’t let generational stereotypes, bias, or judgments negatively influence your ability to be effective with your outreach.

One of the stereotypes is that those persons representing the most recent generations are more into their smartphone and Snapchat than they are about meeting new people in person. Even if this stereotype seems true to you it could be all the more reason to make that outreach.

So often people become focused on generational differences when what they should be considering is generational commonalities. Your attendance at a conference is one of your best chances to increase and improve your network. Since your conference is most likely a live face-to-face event, use this opportunity to connect real-time. There are many things that all generations have in common; in this case the commonality is a focus on building and improving your network and relationships.

After the Conference

You’re not finished. You’ve survived, you’re excited, and your return trip gave you a few much needed minutes to unwind and digest some of the great content, strengthened relationships, and new found friends. Now what?

If you haven’t already done so, grab all of your business cards and make sure they make it into your contact management software, make the time to look up each and every one of them on LinkedIn or other channels, send personalized invitations to connect and follow up on any promises you made. If you suggested you would send them a link, do it, if you offered some additional information, send it, or if you suggested a follow-up telephone call schedule it.

You’ve made the investment, use a few minutes immediately following the event to collect your thoughts, debrief (yourself or others), and be sure you tie up any loose ends.

Make it Strategic

Practice makes perfect, but many professionals will only get to one or two major conferences per year. If this is you, you’re going to have to be sure that you are strategic in your approach. It’s far too easy to arrive at a conference, go through some of the motions, hit a few breakout sessions and exchange a business card or two from some chance encounter that you simply stumbled upon. Then you return home with only the memory of the person on the airplane who occupied half of your coach class seat, the speaker who made you laugh or cry, and the quality of the food in the buffet line.

You and your network are worth more than that.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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customer service for vendors

Is Customer Service For Vendors?

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Let’s get this straight. You give a vendor a purchase order and the vendor gives you an invoice. It isn’t the other way around. What about customer service techniques or etiquette, does that apply to both sides of a transaction? Is customer service for vendors?

Customer service might mean more than just providing fast, friendly, and kind interactions with your customers. Perhaps it should apply to all scenarios.

Sometimes your vendor might be a website, but chances are good there is still some human interaction somewhere. One of the goals of exceptional customer service is to make people feel good. We strive to make them feel valued, important, and respected.

Vendors are people too. It might matter which side of the transaction you are on, but shouldn’t both sides feel good about the business? Of course they should.

Customer Service for Vendors

Here are a few fundamentals that should easily apply from customer to vendor:

  • Courtesy. Yes, you’re likely pushing hard for a great price, exceptional terms, and fast delivery. Negotiation means that both sides are willing to compromise. Negotiating hard makes good business sense but you can still be courteous in your demeanor.
  • Follow Up. You expect your vendor to follow up with status. You expect follow up if they encounter any delays or problems. As the customer, shouldn’t you have a responsibility to keep the vendor informed if there are any changes on your end?  The answer is easy, “Yes!”
  • Thank You. Who should express thanks and appreciation? You are both in this together. It should be a partnership. Extending kindness, expressing appreciation, and showing that you care is a two-way street.

Do You Choose Sides?

Certainly, the vendor side of any transaction has some differences when compared with the customer side. Do we really need to choose sides? Technically, yes, we do. However, in the spirit of a healthy relationship it really doesn’t matter which side you are on.

Do good business. Be appropriately assertive.

Relationships are about people.

Give good service.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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People Numbers

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We’ve heard quality over quantity, law of large numbers, and the economy of scale. While all of these may have importance for achieving your goals or creating your success, the single most important factor may be surrounding yourself with the right people.

AppStratPhoto-NUMBERS

It is often suggested that positive thinking, seeking the positive from any situation or circumstance, and shutting out negativity are key components for achieving good results. Of course, this makes perfect sense, it relates to self-fulfilled prophecy and to our mind-set, which will not only condition outcomes but may also improve efficiency, reduce mistakes, and create a clearer focus.

I believe that the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well, and that from individuals, to small groups and teams, to mid-size or even large corporations we can achieve greater results. What is most important to recognize is that all of the quantity, laws, and scaling won’t make a difference if you are not surrounding yourself with the right people. It isn’t quantity over quality, you don’t necessarily need lots of people, you need the right people. In your life or in your business, you’ll get it done when you are surrounded by the right people.

Ten of the wrong people in your network, life, or business is far, far worse than having only one of the right people. Choose people over numbers.

– DEG
 


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