Lack of motivation can be addressed with structure, direction
Do you sometimes lack motivation to work on your projects? Ever experience one of those days when you have no motivation to do anything? Some days you just can’t bring yourself to boot up that computer or dig into your pile of work. All of us do on occasion. How do you get over that “hump” and get going?
1. Develop an agenda. Unless you are highly disciplined, a day without structure can cause aimlessness. Your mind wanders. You look around the room for something else to do. (Hey, the newspaper looks pretty inviting, doesn’t it?) You start surfing the sports or gossip websites. You need structure in your day. You need an agenda.
As I discuss in another column, an agenda plots out your day in set increments. An agenda dictates what you will work on and when. You stay focused on the various tasks you’ve set out for yourself. At the end of the day you realize you’ve accomplished quite a bit. Even more amazing, you look back and remember how you suffered a lack of motivation earlier in the day.
Build customer loyalty by being committed to customer satisfaction
Customer service seems to be in decline. Do you agree? Do you feel businesses are committed to improving customer satisfaction and loyalty?
If you follow Jeffrey Gitomer, you know that one quality is more important than the other. Jeffrey, an experienced sales trainer and veteran sales person, touts the concept customer loyalty. In fact, he even wrote a book about it.
While at the bookstore recently I came upon a fascinating book, “The Art of Selling to the Affluent,” by Matt Oechsli (Wiley & Sons, 2005). In addition to the obvious information, Matt also chimes in on this topic of customer loyalty. Specifically, he offers his Seven Affluent Loyalty Principles. I recap them here, and offer some additional suggestions. You will see that many of these apply to average customers, as well.
1. “Don’t tell people about your service–show them. Creat a comfortable business atmosphere, on the phone, and especially in your physical place of business. Do not try to impress your affluent customers and clients with grandness. Instead, create an environment that is consistently courteous, comfortable, and helpful.”
Remember that you must provide high quality products and services, as well. Many firms say they offer the highest quality, but far too many fall short. Service tends to take a hit. Promises aren’t kept, and staff may be difficult to reach after the sale. Go beyond what others are doing–more on this in #3–and your customers will stick with you.
2. “Practice hospitality by doing little things. Do not allow anyone else to greet your customers or clients. Be there yourself when they come in the door. Do not make them site in front of a receptionist, waiting for you to get off the phone.”
Network marketers and other entrepreneurs occasionally agree to a deal on a handshake (verbal or literal). I have. A recent incident has reminded me of the importance of getting the details in writing before spending the money.
In short: A newspaper ad rep contacted me about a campaign. I liked what he was offering for the price: 4 monthly ads, an advertorial and inclusion in their weekly email blast for the duration.
Later, I emailed the rep asking for a recap of our conversation. I wanted to make sure I had all the details. He replied two times that he would get to it. No response.
If you follow my blog, you notice that I write frequently on the topic of presentation skills. Many columns are generated after sitting through a presentation or seminar. Such is the case today.
1. Make sure your slides are complete. The presenter had to skip over some slides because there weren’t complete. (He claimed the material wasn’t saved.) Always review your slides for completeness. Just one more reason for testing and rehearsing.
2. Arrange equipment so it’s easily accessible. The presenter used a wireless mouse (which is fine), but it was placed on the opposite side of the laptop. He had to reach past the laptop and through the projector beam to get to the mouse. He should’ve place the mouse on his side of the projector.
3. Watch the verbal tics. A lot of ums and ahs today. Too bad, because his material was good, as were his answers to questions. Teach yourself to eliminate the verbal tics for a more polished presentation.
It takes time and effort; believe me, I know. In fact, I’m still working on my speech patterns. But over time you’ll get better and sound better.
For related reading, see “Suggestions for your next presentation” and “Public speaking tip – let your hands flow freely.”
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Image courtesy of Stock.Xchng.
Improve your oral presentation skills with these tips
In previous columns, including this one, I have offered a number of tips for improving your presentation skills. Having attended another presentation, I find the need to offer some additional reminders here. After reviewing my columns, you’ll note a pattern to these presentation gaffes.
1. Not using the microphone. The room was not particularly large and the ceiling was not high. Even so, presenters should have used the microphone. A cordless model came with the lectern. The first presenter tested the mic and, upon finding that it wasn’t turned on, ignored it. So did the rest of the presenters.
Remember that it is your responsibility as presenter to test all equipment. Ask for assistance if something is not working properly (or not on). Always use a mic if one is available.