July 15, 2014
The blog is temporarily down for a little upgrade. We’ll be back soon and very soon with a new and improved look.
Meanwhile, I’d like us all to meditate on this picture of the man who saved the world again. You’re welcome, ‘Merica.
July 10, 2014
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In other news, my WordPress dashboard tells me this is the 100th Thursday Three For All. That calls for a celebration. Or a realization that I’m really, really lazy and just like to curate other people’s stuff.
(Let’s go with the first option. It sounds better.)
How much do you trust your people to do the right thing?
Consider giving every person on your team a budget—$1000 a year? $200 an incident? and challenging them to spend the money to make things right, to create efficiency, to delight.
Inside President Obama’s Secret Schedule. (via @OKnox) Whatever your political bent, try to set it aside for this article. It’s a fascinating look at the art and science of handling one of the biggest jobs on the planet.
In classic Washington fashion, there are also presidential meetings called “drop-bys” that sound casual but are actually meticulously planned. Sometimes a meeting gets that label to dampen expectations that the president will stick around for a long time. Other times, there are questions of protocol — for example, it’s appropriate for the national security adviser to schedule a meeting with a given ambassador or international figure who might not rate a formal sit-down with the president. Then the president just “drops by.”
Astonishingly detailed 19th century sand art jars. (via @LaughingSquid) What did you expect? They didn’t have Twitter to keep ’em busy.
June 26, 2014
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Find a common thread to tie unrelated jobs to your career plans. (via @Lifehacker) This article was the impetus for Monday’s post, Don’t Waste Your Day Job. If you’re working a job that’s not necessarily your dream, you need to read this:
Whether you worked retail, then helped a friend start a corner store, and delivered pizza at night, and now you’re going in for an office job, you can highlight how retail helped you learn to work with difficult people, how building that store from scratch got you familiar with the pace and stress of a fledgling, startup business, and how delivering pizzas at night taught you a thing or two about dedication and off-hours work.
I don’t want to say here that there is only one right way to set up your desk. There are some pretty tricky situations given the setups that are often thrust upon us, such as odd-shaped cubicles or, if we have an office, uncooperative room layouts. And personal preference also plays a huge role as well.
The problem I found, though, is that these factors lead many to give the advice of “just do what works for you.” Which really gives no guidance at all. The result, I found, was that I had to think about my desk a lot more than I wanted.
Guy covers “All By Myself” during an insanely long layover. (via @22words) This will make you rethink your next night alone at the airport.
June 19, 2014
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I think we as Christians have a reputation as conversation stoppers. When we engage people on the other side of an issue, most of the time, the conversation doesn’t end the way we want it to. It gets stopped short or our side of the issue ends up being misrepresented. And that’s largely our fault. We prefer to be heard, as opposed to actually listening. We want the benefit of the doubt, but we’re reluctant to give it. Instead, we lead with our idea of what’s right and wrong – our belief – instead of leading with love.
Second mile service behaviors will not create “wow” experiences if our guests are blinded to them because of the absence of excellence in 1st mile services. We can’t wow our guests if we can’t meet their most basic expectations. It doesn’t matter how many bottles of lotion, packs of mints, or what type of flowers adorn our restrooms if there is no toilet paper or the floor is dirty, or the garbage needs to be emptied (ever found yourself in this situation?). The “wow” simply doesn’t land.
June 12, 2014
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Five Spectacular Ways to Create the Worst Customer Experience. (via @jeanniecw) I get it: they’re not customers, they’re guests. But still, how many of these are our churches guilty of?
4. Recruiting the wrong people
Your employees play a huge role in driving your customer experience. If they’re unhappy, unfriendly or just plain bored with their jobs, that will translate into a miserable experience for your customers. Companies like Southwest Airlines and Zappo’s have made it a huge part of their culture to make sure they recruit the right people.
One theory says that if you treat people well, you’re more likely to encourage them to do what you want, making all the effort pay off. Do this, get that.
Another one, which I prefer, is that you might consider treating people with kindness merely because you can. Regardless of what they choose to do in response, this is what you choose to do. Because you can.
Oregon Man Lives in a Retired Boeing 727 Airliner That Is Parked in the Woods. (via @22Words) I want to go to there.
June 5, 2014
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Secrets of Consistent Customer Service: How to Be Great Again and Again. (via @micahsolomon) How’s your church doing on the consistency scorecard? Do you deliver the same (or better!) “wow” experiences each week?
The summary statement for a standard should include the following:
1. Why the service is of value (why we’re doing this in the first place)
2. The emotional response we’re aiming to have the customer feel
3. The expected way to accomplish the service. (Point three should be formulated in a manner that allows judgment and discretion to be used in all but mission-critical situations.)
5. Throw away the map and write your own story! Forget what the generations before you have taught. You live in the now and you write history. This sounds great now but I wonder what you’ll think about this quote in twenty years, when a new batch of grads are being told to throw away the map that you’ve been writing. We need history. There is nothing new under the sun. There isn’t a new story to write. There’s only the Grand Old Story to embrace and enjoy.
9 Clever Business Cards You’d Want in Your Wallet. (via @entmagazine) Based on what you do for a living, what would your “build your own business card” look like?
A mechanical engineer named Bryce Bell created the “Cardapult,” a business card that doubles as a catapult.