Tag Archives: expectations

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Customer satisfaction

Customer Satisfaction May Start With a Promise

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An easy question to ask but a harder one to answer is what promotes customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is based on an expectation, a perception, and a feeling during or after an interaction. What is your promise?

The Promise

Brands have promises. Cadillac, BMW, or Jaguar may have a brand promise. So does Hyundai and Kia.

A dinner out at an Outback Steakhouse carries a different expectation from McDonald’s, Burger King, or Wendy’s.

An employee earning $90k annually has additional expectations when compared with the employee who earns $35k.

Similar expectations exist for a cup of coffee, a bottle of wine, or pair of shoes. Price sets precedence for the expectations and it elevates the factor of risk for customer satisfaction.

The lower the price, the lower the brand promise, theoretically making it easier to satisfy.

Are more people satisfied with a low-price experience as compared with a high price experience?

It would be hard to guess with so many factors conditioning any potential outcome. However, most would agree that a big price with poor outcomes is remembered long after the experience is over.

A low price with a bad experience is easier to forget. We may think, “I didn’t get much, but I didn’t expect it either.”

What is your commitment? Are you making big promises? Are you commanding a higher price?

Customer Satisfaction

It seems that is easier to give less, do less, and provide less because the expectations are lower. On the flip side of that, if we are always providing less is our customer satisfaction truly high or are we short changing the customer experience?

Does a $75 per hour employee work harder than a $14 per hour employee? Theoretically no, both should be 100% effort for one hour of work, but the expected value of the $75 per hour employee is much more.

What are you doing about customer satisfaction? Taking big risks with big promises, or just delivering the easy stuff.

It’s a choice and a mindset. It’s your brand promise and it starts with culture.

-DEG

Our actions, behaviors, and outcomes are driven by culture. So is customer satisfaction. It is why I wrote this book:

customer satisfaction

Buy now on Amazon

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Career Quick Fix

Career Quick Fix, Shortcuts, or Give Up?

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Fast paced is commonly used to describe the intensity of today’s work environment. Rapid change, accelerated change, and speed are also commonly mentioned. Are you looking for a career quick fix, a shortcut, or else you’ll just give up?

People often talk about change. They talk about the unfairness of life. How things didn’t work out, didn’t go their way, or they how they are being overlooked. I’m not doubtful that these situations occur, but what should you do?

Be Realistic

As a society we seem to have become more convinced if things don’t happen fast, they either aren’t going to happen or they aren’t worth pursuing. They are, a waste of time.

Imagine that you start a new diet today. You eat healthier, cut a few calories, watch out for sugars, carbs, and appropriately balance your meals. Is the scale going to be noticeably different tomorrow? Will the mirror reflect a new you?

The same is true for a fitness program. You go to the gym. Move a few weights around, get on the treadmill, step on the scale and look in the mirror. What’s changed?

Our expectations for a quick fix are often unrealistic. There really aren’t many shortcuts. Should you give up? No, we all know it takes time, consistency, and persistence.

Career Quick Fix

The same is true for your career. It is true for your promotion, true for your new job opportunity, and true for your success at nearly anything.

You’ve been working hard for a couple of years, or ten, or even twenty. Have you grown? What has changed? Can you prove it?

Most career minded individuals can prove it. It is in the continuing education, the advancement here and there, and some metrics or measurements that illustrate growth.

Daily, the quick check in the mirror, doesn’t show much. Yet, something is happening, things are changing, new opportunities (or proof) are popping up.

Don’t give up. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

-DEG

What happens next is based on expectations, consistency, and persistence. Need a coach? Contact me

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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consistency

Consistency May Be Exactly What You Need

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People spend a lot of energy being persistent. They also spend a lot of energy being persuasive or influential. Those ideas are important but is consistency what you’re really missing?

For the marketer, the pizza shop, and the career builder, being consistent may be the most important factor you are overlooking.

Consistency matters in nearly any profession. It matters for your personal brand. It certainly matters for product quality and reputation.

Importance of Consistency

Why is consistency so important? Here are three of my favorite reasons:

  1. Trust. Consistency builds trust. When people know what to expect and when they are more trusting. It is one example of why surprises aren’t necessarily fun. It is also why the boy who cried wolf got in trouble.
  2. Accomplishment. When you have a confirmed path for a solution, consistently applying the process will allow you to achieve the goal. It is the deviation from the process, or a lack of consistency, which often slows results or creates a less desirable outcome.
  3. Promises Kept. Connected with trust, but not always the same, is keeping your promise. Your brand has a promise. You make a promise to complete the work, have high quality, and deliver on time. Insisting on consistency means expectations and perceptions become reality.

Not Scattered, More Focused

For your business or for your personal brand, consistency is sometimes overlooked or underrated. Being too scattered or lacking a focus may be exactly why your product is not chosen or the job opportunity is missed.

Consistency helps everyone understand and identify exactly what is in the box. It builds confidence. Confidence is connected to our emotions, so is the choice that buyers or hiring agents make.

Is consistency exactly what you need?

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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filtering expectations

Filtering Expectations Can Be Harmful To Your Wealth

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Did you get exactly what you expected? It is likely that much of our cognitive behavior is the result of filtering expectations. What filters are you using? Does it help or just limit and hide the unwanted?

It may be debatable. The idea that we get what we look for and see what we want to see. People may argue profusely that they are not conditioning their reactions or data with their environment. Think twice.

Seeing Is Believing?

What do you expect about your workplace? What are the norms, the cultural climate, and the anticipated outcomes?

You have meetings, what are the expectations, how are you filtering what is presented and discussed?

You interview job candidates. They are heavily filtered. Often by assumed characteristics of backgrounds, stereotypes, and your expectations.

Sometimes you are surprised. Sometimes what you see is not what you get. The filters didn’t catch it, they didn’t self-identify, and now you have a different result.

Filters or Blinders?

We use filters all the time. We often filter our searches online. When we shop online, browse, study, read, and even to get caught up on the news.

Filters can become problematic. Not that we misread the results, but that they also serve as blinders.

Ignore it because it isn’t real. Look the other way because this data is easier to digest.

Deny the data, suggest it isn’t real because it doesn’t align with the path you wish to see.

Filtering Expectations

Are you filtering expectations? Are you using life experiences to drive your vision to a path that aligns with the idea of your vision instead of a path that aligns with reality?

This may be creating false perceptions and self-deception.

We think we know what is in the box. However, we can’t see it, touch it, taste it, smell it, or hear it. Occasionally what is inside the box doesn’t match the picture on the outside.

This is true for your next meeting, the potential new hire, and choosing the most successful path.

Filters can be helpful, but sometimes they block something really great.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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managing disappointment

Managing Disappointment Starts With Managing Expectations

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Are you working hard for an outcome only to later become disappointed? Have you given your best effort but someone only expresses their perceived shortcomings in your work? Are you effectively managing disappointment?

It may happen today, perhaps it happened yesterday, or maybe it even feels like a chronic pattern. What is the root cause of disappointment?

Great Expectations

It seems that the root cause is linked to expectations. We have a goal, or someone sets a goal for us. It could be related to vision. A great cake to me is chocolate, but a great cake to someone else may be vanilla.

Misunderstanding expectations are sometimes to blame. Differences in opinions, values, and beliefs may also be a cause. “When I discovered her political views, I was disappointed.”

So, the root cause probably exists in expectations. What is expected compared with what is received.

I worked so hard on that assignment, but I only received an 80% for my grade. 

I’m disappointed in my meal. It looked nothing like it did in the picture. 

My hair looks terrible. It came out completely different than I expected. 

Society is constantly shaping many of our expectations. Social media, traditional or digital media, and other informational sources are constantly changing our expectations. 

Today many of us have a camera in hand. The photographs are processed immediately, and are also easily filtered, adjusted, and cropped. What does this lead to? It could be higher expectations.

Managing Disappointment

Perhaps the best thing to always ask yourself about disappointment is, “Compared to what?” When there are feelings or expressions of disappointment you may have to consider the expectations.

If you work with your supervisor on goals, be sure of the expectations. When you get a new project, understand the expectations.

We tend to place too much emphasis on what didn’t work as compared to what did work.

Instead of assessing the output and being critical, consider how you will build on what worked.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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response time

Response Time Expectations and How to Manage Them

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Perception is reality. At least that is what we are often told. It is true, what people expect or perceive is what they measure against. Internally and externally, response time expectations condition satisfaction. Are you managing them or are they managing you?

Perceptions of Response

What are your expectations for response time? It is often a critical measurement. People evaluate and judge your acceptance or not by response time.

When will the wait staff realize I need a refill of my iced tea?

How many rings until someone answers the telephone?

How long do I wait while on hold?

When I send an email how long until I get a response?

How quickly can emergency responders get to my area?

This webpage takes forever to load.

Where is my pizza?

How long until the medicine starts to work?

When will the eBay seller ship?

What time will dinner be ready?

There is an important question to ask about all of these scenarios, “What are your expectations?”

Response Time

We can go through a McDonald’s drive through lane quickly, especially once our order has been placed. The pizza delivery guy is only minutes away after the pizza leaves the oven. The on-line merchandise order is typically less than two days away, and shipping is advertised as free.

Patience may be important for the recipient but it is still based entirely on expectations. Those expectations often develop from past experiences. Fortunately, or unfortunately, those past experiences are working for or against your perceived level of service.

Today expectations are shorter, faster, or quicker than ever before. We can get a loan for very little cost, very fast. Our pizza can be hot and ready, just stop in the store. Our burger is fewer than ninety seconds away, and researching to find answers to our questions are at our fingertips in under a minute.

Managing Expectations

How does the service provider manage expectations? Typically, information will help manage expectations. It may be the notification on the technical support line of the number we represent in the queue. The same is true for the help chat.

The pizza shop will often tell us the wait time when placing an order by phone and we expect the medicine to work in just minutes.

It still remains a two-way street. Push the employee, vendor, or service provider too hard, and you’ll likely find errors or rework is necessary. While you often measure with response time, perhaps patience is another metric to consider. It is the push and pull of quality and problem resolution.

Expected Wait Time

People wait for hours in line to get the new iPhone. They tailgate at the big game for more than triple the time the game is actually played.

Not so long ago a mail order businesses (today’s dot com) once shipped in 30 days, or call from a friend or relative only happened when they had access to a landline telephone.

When we expect an immediate response we may have to remind ourselves about our expectations. We may have to consider our patience, which often allows for better quality. A fix it once correctly is better than a fix it wrong or part of the way for two or three tries.

Information is Key

Keep communicating. Respond to email, text messages, or telephone calls. Provide updates, status reports, and historical data.

Expectations are guided by perception, perception becomes reality, it is all based on past experiences and information. When in doubt, practice patience, it matters.

Do you want to be a step ahead of the competition? Find ways to do your best work faster, it is what everyone expects.

– 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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expectations control

Expectations Control Your Future

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Several times recently, I’ve chatted with friends and clients about expectations. Expectations really condition the feeling that we have about an outcome. Do expectations control your future?

Future Expectations

When we embark on something new, sometimes our expectations are high, the new restaurant, the new digital device, or even the new job. We often expect a lot.

Social media is an interesting example. Many people grab their phone, tap an icon and expect to be engaged by a post from a life they aren’t living. They may be looking to live vicariously.

However, social media just like many things in life do not always meet or exceed our expectations. Sometimes, or often, it is something less.

For many others their daily commute is too crowded, the internet too slow, and the weather often seems undesirable.

High Hopes

Hopes, faith, or some form of conviction, it keeps many people going. Yet nearly everyday someone will find a way to describe a dream that is shattered.

High expectations and high hopes can eventually drive a feeling of disappointment. Feeling disappointed people stop dreaming, they stop hoping and they lose faith in a favorable outcome.

Management Expectations

In management circles, workplace expectations drive goals and an outcome is produced. How is that outcome measured? Often it is measured against management expectations.

Do lowered expectations change the results? They can, but they can also shatter dreams.

Expect to Win

There may be a difference between the athlete who wants to make it to the Olympic Games and the athlete who wins. Often one expects to get there, for another, they expect to win.

We can’t lose sight though of reality. Reality is the brutal truth. It pinches us, and lowers the expectations of the dream. The feeling is disappointment, and it often goes unexpressed. It is the social media thread that only illustrates bad news, no good news.

Disappointment is part of life, growth, and ultimately a path to a happier place. Is it about expectations control?

Expectations Control

Expectations can satisfy or leave you wanting more. The trick then is learning to adjust your expectations to the reality of the situation.

You may believe you deserve better or the business goal may be too short sighted, but your expectations will help you determine what happens next.

Don’t give up on your dream. You deserve it, but the hope and faith that will keep you going is based entirely on your expectations.

– 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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performance gaps

Performance Gaps, Energy, and Expectations

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Most business plans solidify the intent to close the gap. This gap exists between where they are today and where they want to be at the next checkpoint. What are your performance gaps and are your expectations compelling enough to keep you moving?

Some of the hardest working people are not content. In fact, being content or comfortable is likely one of the best ways to be left behind.

On The Move

There are people striving to close their gap, the empty spaces on their grades transcript, or the gap in their salary that has existed since before they took the job. Still others are working to close the gap between the car, the house, or high priced luxury item they have been dreaming about for years.

Establishing the gap, the understanding that one exists in the first place, is what sets most people apart. It is not about weakness, it is actually about strength.

It doesn’t require nearly as much energy to sit on the sidelines and watch when compared with the energy expended by those on the field.

You are going to need a lot of energy to play on the field. Your performance gaps can become either your fuel or your obstacle. You can build a bridge to close the gap, or sit on the side looking across insisting you can’t get there.

Performance Gaps and Energy

Most overnight successes really aren’t that, they just look that way. The difference for some exists in how they use their energy.

Here is the real difference. Many people believe that they have to push harder, but the most successful people aren’t pushing, they are being pulled.

They use their energy differently, they are compelled and drawn towards the other side, the gap is inspirational not exhausting.

Sure, they’ll work until they drop, but the next day they can’t wait to get started again.

It is a new day, are you going to look at the gap and wonder, or get pulled towards the other side?

– 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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build better careers

Expectations Build Better Careers

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Most of our analysis of life is conditioned by our expectations. Expectations affect everyone’s outlook. They apply to the perfectionist, the idealist, and the pragmatist. High ambition or low, expectations condition results. How do expectations build better careers?

It might seem odd when you think about it. We often tell our friends what we want to quit, but are more quiet about what we really want to achieve. We’ll talk about cutting sugar from our diet, cutting back on junk food, or even about not letting the small stuff get us upset.

Cutbacks typically garnish support. Friends remind friends to have one less beer, to quit smoking, or to consume fewer calories. That is great, in a sense. That may be one of the many great things about friends.

What About Ambitions

What about the other side, what about ambitions, are they supported? If you say you want to complete the college degree, be promoted to vice president, or earn the big bucks, do you get support?

Unfortunately, ambitions are often met with jealously, envy, or the face of insecurity from others. People claim that others who are on the move may be bragging or are narcissistic. If you can support the quit and the cut back or cut out, then you had better be there to support ambitions.

Ambitions are built from expectations. Low or moderate expectations create an opening for easy achievement, average results, or a blending of the crowd. High expectations feel risky and almost out of reach which is exactly why you need more support.

Our success in life, or in some cases perhaps our happiness is conditioned by our expectations. Our expectations are supported, or not, by our friends, family, and colleagues.

I remember in junior high school one of the teachers had a mural in the classroom which contained the words, “great expectations.” Illustrating what was expected from the students. The belief was that it conditioned results. It still moves me today.

Build Better Careers

Our success is often conditioned by what we believe. The Wright brothers believed in flight, Microsoft, and Apple in what some considered crazy dreams. Henry Ford believed in cars, and William Harley and Arthur Davidson in motorcycles. They all had great expectations.

Expectations will help you accomplish your career goals. Make sure you are getting the support you need. Most of all, make sure that you are giving it to others.

– 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, Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours!, 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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future customer service expectations

Exceed Future Customer Service Expectations

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Retail stores (and online) gear up for back to school. They increase hiring and stock more inventory for cyclical or holiday seasons. They expect more to happen, more sales, more customers, and more revenue. It may represent future customer service expectations.

Most of us try to prepare. We prepare for the surge. Rush hour traffic, the dinner hour at our favorite restaurant, and even the best timing for the grocery store.

Customers and businesses alike prepare. They prepare for the most, more, and when they expect many. Are you prepared for the future expectations of your customers? What experience are they anticipating? What is your perception?

Technology and Speed

Technology is pushing everything to be faster. A telephone call or message once had to wait until we got to the next destination. Conversations or updates waited until after school, after work, until the evening or perhaps even waited until the upcoming weekend.

Many people carry a portable computer in the form of a smart phone in their pocket or purse. They get anxious when it isn’t working fast enough or the service is questionable.

When we have a question we don’t have to wait until the store opens tomorrow or the expert calls us back when he or she can fit us in. We don’t need a paper (hardcopy) dictionary, a thesaurus, or encyclopedia.

We don’t need our friend the professional mechanic to show us how to change our oil or fix the kitchen sink. All that we need is our phone, appropriate service and the understanding of how to seek a digital answer. Or is there something more?

Things aren’t just changing, they have changed. Expectations are increasing faster and many businesses can’t keep up.

Old School and Experts

Of course, there is always the desire for what once was such as the camping trip, the no phone zone, and an opportunity to unwind.

If you can raise the effort for back to school, the holiday season, and to achieve the best timing, do you really understand the future expectations of your customer? If the answers are only a smartphone away how does the expert become valued?

Future Customer Service Expectations

Expectations are created and opportunities exist in your future and for the future of your business.

Expectations create perception and perception is reality. With a little effort, you might be able to predict the future more than what you realize.

– 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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