Returning Calls

In business, returning your calls is not optional. we are all busy people, it is virtually impossible to be available for every call that comes in. So at some point of time, a caller is going to get your voice mail. But will you return their call?

I receive 100+ emails and dozens of calls every day. I respond to every single email and message personally. You may think that is silly, but I feel it is the right thing to do. I put away an hour of my day to return my calls. Some people announce in their voice mail to specifically let callers know their calls will be returned during specific hours of the day.  Isn’t that wonderful?

Returning phone calls used to be a courtesy that was heavily ingrained in proper business etiquette. Sometime during the exponential growth of information to which we have all been exposed, returning phone calls has become the exception rather than the rule.

People that don’t call or email me back, get on my nerves. It’s disrespectful.  It says, “you are not important to me.”  My philosophy is that you should never be so self-absorbed that you stop caring about others.  If someone calls you, call them back.  Dude, if they are “asking” and you have nothing to offer, simply say “no”. That will work. Trust me!

The one thing to keep in mind is that there may be a legitimate reason for someone to not return my call.  Health or family issues come to mind.  When someone has a personal crisis, everything else is off the radar.  So before you go off the deep end, make sure there was not a legitimate reason for the lack of a return call.

Returning phone calls is an essential part of building strong relationships, which is the foundation for a successful business. Want to talk to me about it? Call me :-). You may have to leave a message, but you can be sure that I will call you back. So let it be written, so let it be done.

Thriving on challenges

Most successful people thrive on challenges — on doing what others think cannot be done. We use challenges for self-motivation. Usually, the best challenges are the ones you can give yourself.

Do you want to impress someone else, or yourself?

I’ve been asking myself that question for sometime now. I need to get involved with projects that motivate me, excite me, and push me to excel … otherwise … I’m a vegetable.

Here’s a great quote: “Always thrive for more. Realize there are tremendous opportunities available to you, and be alert to them.”  (Not sure who it’s from)

Invest in Real Estate!

Research In Motion (RIM), now called Blackberry, was once worth $77 billion dollars. It was sold for $4.7 billion in 2013.

Forget about the stock market and invest in the HOT Toronto Real Estate market.

Become a Landlord and make money slowly but surely…

Contact me to learn how this can be done and what your long term return on your initial investment will be. Let us show you charts, and real figures on how Real Estate can make you $money. We are here to earn your business and make you $money.

 

Customer Service! Miracle!

These days everything can be duplicated, made better, bigger and even cheaper. So how do you add value to what you do?  What’s the icing on the cake? We know that for every Coke there’s a Pepsi, but they’re not the same.

Going way above and beyond the call of duty to help a customer, because you feel it is the right thing to do, without any expectation other than a satisfied customer is what I’d like to call a “miracle”.  Customer service is not about what companies or shops or restaurants… do. It is what people do, people who care for customers. And if you are one of those exceptional individuals that provide such miracles, and with a smile :-), well my friend, I salute you!

Customer Service is front line innovation. That is, when a service sector customer-interface employee is empowered to, or empower themselves to use their knowledge and networks to solve problems without management involvement. Innovation in the service sector should not come from above but from below (Yes, really!).

Inefficiencies in the service sector are almost always in response to something unexpected. When service workers confront an unexpected situation, do they a) seek a manager to deal with the non-standard variation or b) use their knowledge and the knowledge of those around them to troubleshoot and resolve?  The “miracle” is when you do (or find) the latter. In such events, the value delivered to the customer and to the organization in immeasurable.

Most businesses really struggle to develop something uniquely valuable about their services.  Take a look around you and look at lawyers, accountants or agents per se that are operating in your community. They all seem so similar. They all have same slogan, use the same cliché promises, offer more or less the same services, advertise in the same ad-infested papers, and thus make themselves all-but invisible.

One way to really stand out and make a great name for yourself or your business is to provide genuinely exceptional customer service. Offering exceptional customer service is one of the best ways to retain your existing customers and develop new ones at the same time. It’s a super high leverage activity. People universally adore being looked after and being made feel special. You can call it a human weakness, but really, if you want to plug your business into the power of word of mouth marketing, this is a superb place to start.

Let me highlight that customer service excellence is rare today. It is so rare that when you provide it to people, they tell everyone.  In other words if you become one of the few people that takes breaths away with your customer service, your business can generate stacks of powerful word of mouth publicity.  Our city is filled with obnoxious and arrogant people running their businesses, so you will stand out if you provide the level of customer service that is lacking in today’s market.

Now, promising exceptional service is easy — the CHALLENGE is providing it!

— By Kory Gorgani. Printed in Roya Magazine. September Issue.

People First, Strategy Second

Getting the right people in the right job is a lot more important than developing a strategy. This truth applies to all kinds of businesses. You can have many great strategies, but until you have the right people, you can never make it happen.

Yup, you can have the greatest strategies in place but without the right leaders developing and owning them, we’d get good-looking presentations and so-so results.

In the Zone!

No, this is not about Britney Spears. Remember when you had to write term papers. Sometimes it was murder to get started, so you did everything imaginable other than actually write the paper. And when there was no more time to kill, you started to work. Surprisingly, something changed. You found that it wasn’t so hard, the words began to flow, and you were getting your thoughts across. You were producing pages without pain. You were in the zone; you found your tempo and flow.

Athletes talk a lot about being in the zone, that magical place where mind and body work in perfect sync and movements seem to flow without conscious effort.

When everthing comes naturally, easily, and seems to flow, that’s when you are in the zone. What a wonderful magical place it is, being in the zone.

First Impressions

No matter how much we might think that we are non-judgmental every one of us is ‘guilty’ of making first impressions about people. It can take as little as 3 seconds for us to make an initial first impression about somebody we meet for the very first time and this is whether we do that consciously or sub-consciously.

In business, what’s challenging is that people will often make a first impression about you even BEFORE you’ve actually met. It’s all based on the subject of perceived status and business hierarchy. Most business people will often know the job title as well as the name of the person they’re going to be meeting, before they’ve even met. As a result, they will likely form an initial impression of a person, simply based around their ‘status’ within a company. Usually if the person you’re meeting is in a higher ranked position to yourself, you’re already likely to be thinking that this is a person worth getting to know as they could be a valuable contact. If they hold the same or similar status to yourself, then you’ll think them worthy of your time. However, if their status is below that of yours, then you’re far more likely to keep them somewhat at a distance or, at best, tolerated. Yeah, this may be the extreme but, nevertheless, it does occur and does demonstrate just how important first impressions are. Trust me on this!

OK, “So how do you make a good impression?” you may ask.  Firstly, the way you dress is very important. Your grooming, the watch and the jewelery you wear and the car you drive and its usually either one or several of these aspects which is likely to form a part of a person’s very first impressions about you.

Secondly, the way you carry yourself, the way you speak, move your eyes, gesture with your arms or hands – all of these will be giving off signals for people to create their own first impressions of you. Even when you speak, whilst this will be a more clearer indication of the qualities you have as a person to do business with and will, to a large extent, enable people to form opinions about your intelligence, knowledge, skills and experience in a particular field, it’s often the WAY you speak that will be remembered more than WHAT you actually say. Having polite manners, showing courtesy, being positive and energetic, coming across as reliable, honest and trustworthy and even smiling all help to give off a positive impression too.

It’s always a good idea to get a feel of what is and isn’t appropriate etiquette within your own specific environment to gain a better idea of how to create a positive first impression as it will often be this that will ultimately determine your success or failure.

Customer Loyalty

I still encounter bad customer service even though we live in such a competitive business world. And many times the level of customer service varies from person to person in a single organization. Don’t these guys know good customer service is the lifeblood of their businesses? You can offer promotions and lower your prices, but unless you can get some of your customers to come back, your business won’t be around for long. Trust me on this one!

Good customer service is all about bringing customers back. And about sending them away happy happy enough to pass positive feedback about your business along to others, who may then try the product or service you offer for themselves and in their turn become repeat customers.

In our lives, most of us would like to believe that the more someone knows us, the more that person will like us. Have you heard the phrase “To know me is to love me”? This is the essence of customer service.

Without customers there would not be a business. Excellent customer service results in increased sales, satisfied customers and greater job satisfaction for employees. High quality customer service helps to create customer loyalty. Customers today are not only interested in the product they are being offered but all the additional elements of service that they receive from the greeting to the help they receive to the way their complaints are dealt with.

For God’s sake answer your phone with a nice greeting and pleasant tone. Listen to your customers. Listen to what I have to say. Deal with complaints. Don’t give me the run-around. Be helpful – even if there’s no immediate profit in it. Train the staff to be consistent, always helpful, courteous, and knowledgeable. Take an extra step and show actions. And always throw in something extra to sweeten the deal.A

If you apply the above rules consistently, your business will become known for its good customer service. And your gain is nothing but customer loyalty. How sweet is that?

2018 Life Lessons

As 2019 approaches, it’s that time of the year to look back and search for lessons we’ve learnt during this past year. It is impossible to go through a whole year and not learn something new about yourself and about the world around us. Here’s my list:

1. What you feel is what you attract. The Universe is listening to us. Let’s fill our lives with positive affirmations and reap the rewards.

2. Enjoy life. This very moment, is my life. Life is not between the moments of your birth and death. Life is between now and your next breath. Right here and right now is your life.

3. A lifetime isn’t very long. This year we saw the passing of many people. Life is now, so whatever you need to do, start doing it today. There are only so many tomorrows.

4. Make time for family. Family always comes first, always.

5. Be kind. Small acts of kindness can make the world a better place. Kindness is the only investment that never fails.

6. Check your emotions. When you’re dealing with a crappy situation, it’s very easy to let emotions get the best of you. Learn to check them between the lines.

7. Respect your gut feelings. Gut feelings come from your so many years of experience … don’t ignore it. It comes from your soul.

8. Learn to let go. People who are controlling have a hard time moving through the world. Let go. It’s simple.

9. Let them be. Some people live in La La Land. Let them be as they belong there :-).

10. Show up mentally and emotionally every day. If your body will show up, your mind will show up too. Have blind faith in your goals, follow it with passion and with purpose.

11. Live life on your terms. Put you “honest” opinions out there. When you put yourself out there, you’re going to get judged. Ignore the negativity. Only God can judge you.

12. You can say “no”. Saying no does not make you selfish. Look at your time as being one of the most precious things in life.

13. Never stop learning.  Read more books, go to more conferences as learning never ends. Learning is earning!

14. Make health a priority. Exercising, working on our mindset and eating healthy. They are all tied in together to help us live a wholesome life.

15. Bless everything you do. Let’s be grateful. Our attitude toward life will determine life’s attitude toward us. The more we express our gratitude, the more we have to be  grateful for.

2018 has also been a year of distressing news, cruelty in many parts of the world, good people dying and the list goes on. If we were to pause and reflect on the good moments though, I think we’d find there are always more things to be grateful for than ever.

Until this time next year … Let’s make everyday count. God bless.

Lack of intellectual acuity!

He’s a few clowns short of a circus. A few fries short of a Happy Meal. An experiment in Artificial Stupidity. A few beers short of a six-pack. Dumber than a box of hair. A few peas short of a casserole. Doesn’t have all his cornflakes in one box. His wheel’s spinning but the hamster’s dead. One Fruit Loop shy of a full bowl. One taco short of a combination plate. A few feathers short of a whole duck. All foam, no beer. The cheese slid off his cracker. Body by Fisher, brains by Mattel. Couldn’t pour water out of a boot with instructions on the heel. He fell out of the Stupid tree and hit every branch on the way down. An intellect rivaled only by garden tools. As smart as bait. Chimney’s clogged. He doesn’t have all his dogs on one leash. Doesn’t know much but leads the league in nostril hair. Elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top floor. He forgot to pay his brain bill. His sewing machine’s out of thread. His antenna doesn’t pick up all the channels. His belt doesn’t go through all the loops. If he had another brain it would be lonely. He’s missing a few buttons on his remote control. No grain in the silo. Proof that evolution “can” go in reverse. Receiver is off the hook. Several nuts short of a full pouch. Skylight leaks a little. Slinky’s kinked. Surfing in Nebraska. Too much yardage between the goal posts. Not the sharpest knife in the drawer. The lights are on, but nobody’s home. 24 cents short of a quarter.

What does this all mean? Simple,  he is lacking intellectual acuity!