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This Week's Inspiration
Your Customer is NOT Always Right!
Yes, there are times when our clients have concerns to which we need to respond, such as the package arrived damaged or later than we promised.
In workshops during the height of the customer-service trend in the early '90s, I actually taught that the customer is always right—but no longer.
Who has your ear? Who is providing you with feedback?
Several years ago during one of our Assessment Systems Certification Workshops, an individual shared that he did not like CRG's leveraged affiliate business model. He was so upset that CRG would pay him a fee for his referrals, he asked for his money back on the session. He thought it was unprofessional to honor others with a referral fee.
Note: He was the only person to ask for a refund in over 10 years. His business has always struggled. He means well but he is not respected in the business community as competent businessperson. This is not a statement of judgment but, if I am going to seek counsel, it would be from individuals far wiser, more successful, and more experienced than I am.
Should I change CRG's business model because of one contrary opinion among hundreds of positive ones? Of course not, but sadly, many people would.
Here's another example. One of my colleagues, a member of the National Speakers Association, had just completed a keynote address—1 of about 50 a year for which he is paid a significant sum—when an audience member approached him and started in on how she could help him with his speaking style.
If I wanted your opinion, I would have asked for it!
Is it possible that the speaker does not want to change his style? After all, his style is why the decision-maker paid him a significant amount to speak.
And why did that total stranger think it was appropriate to share her thoughts without asking permission?
It appears that almost everyone has an opinion, but few are qualified to provide one.
Have you changed your business model (or direction of your life) because of other people's opinions?
What would your life or business look like if you changed it to fit everyone's (in many cases, unsolicited) opinion? You certainly would not be living your purpose.
About 15 years ago, I stopped using participant evaluation forms with a numeric 1-to-10 measuring format or any mention of the lunch and the facility. I found a high percentage of the group was more interested in complaining about the lunch than addressing the workshop content. The session was about sales, leadership, living on purpose, and so on. The lunch had nothing to do with behavioral transformation!
In one workshop, I got both these comments.
Whose opinion matters? Neither! In the end, you must feel comfortable in your own skin. That's why Self-Worth is so important to our success. If we constantly change because of others' opinions, we stand for nothing.
The "customer is not always right" mindset applies to all areas of our lives.
My point is this: No matter who you are or what you do, unsolicited opinions and comments will be offered. Many will have no merit and should be completely ignored. That includes "well-meaning" family members and friends who are judging the way you "should" run your life or business.
Unless the advisor has a track record of success in the exact area you need, why would you listen? Here are some examples.
The list goes on...
In the end, you must live your own life and run your own business. Don't let dysfunctional clients, individuals or uninformed family and friends inject their opinions into your space. Be respectful, but simply say No.
That's why I stopped seminar evaluations altogether. The only feedback I need is from the decision-maker who invested in my session.
Unless you are one of my trusted advisors, I am not interested in your opinion about my presentations. After 23 years and 2500 presentations, I know myself. I have my own personal style and I am not going to change—nor should you—just because a minority did not like something.
Of course, there are some exceptions, such as feedback from individuals in authority at work and those you trust the most. Even then, make sure you are not being forced to be someone you are not—or expected to compromise your values in favor of another person.
I encourage everyone to stand in your personal and professional space with confidence. You can choose to seek wisdom from others but you must be watchful of the qualifications of your sources.
When you are confident and clear about who and what you are, others' opinions will no longer impact you. You don't need validation because you are secure in yourself. And negative feedback will not take you out.
Review the action steps to confirm possible items where you can improve and not let others drive your agenda in life.
Why Aren't You More Like Me?
I encourage you to read my new book, Why Aren't You More Like Me?"!. It will help you establish a positive framework for understanding the impact that your Personal Style and personality have on the people around you.
The first question followers want leaders to answer is Who are you? They want to know what you care about and why they ought to be following you. You will be able to address those questions and more when you read Ken Keis's new book Why Aren't You More Like Me?"!—a refreshingly clear, comprehensive, and practical guide to discovering your Personal Style, what motivates you, and how to adapt to situations and the styles of others. If you want to improve your personal effectiveness—and do it in a way that is genuine and credible, this book is a great place to start!
Jim Kouzes, Award-Winning Co-author of the Bestseller, The Leadership Challenge, is the Dean's Executive Professor of Leadership,
Why Aren't You More Like Me?"!
?! You Can Transform Your Life!
A research study on self-awareness indicates that without the essential information contained in this book, only 2% of the population will realize their potential!
Learn to be more intentional with your decisions about
This book makes a great gift—for others and for yourself!
Here's what Kenneth Blanchard, of The One Minute Manager? fame,has to say.
Included with each book . . .
Why Aren't You More Like Me?"!
Author Ken Keis, in his groundbreaking new book Why Aren't You More Like Me?"! has created the ultimate resource to help individuals and organizations maximize their strengths through understanding their unique Personal Styles. Although style does not predict a career—a point wisely noted in this book—knowing what makes people tick is definitely linked to outstanding productivity, profits, and a happy workplace. A must read for anyone pursuing higher levels of success.
This Week's Action Steps
Your Customer is NOT Always Right!
Until next time, keep Living On Purpose.
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