February 26, 2012

Appreciation Marketing – Learning From Our Past

Last week, we had dinner at a restaurant where you get a fortune cookie.  Mine read: “Integrity means doing the right thing even when no one is watching.”  It made me think back to some statements that I have heard from several people in my past.  I would like to share some of these with you this week and see it they might have some impact on your life like they have had on mine.

When I was very young and a lot smaller, my Momma told me: “You cannot have two sets of manners, one for public situations and one for home.”  What you do in your public, or business, life cannot be different from what you do in your private life.  If you try to separate the two lives that you have, you will fail to do so and both lives will suffer.  You cannot have a public persona for your business and a private one at home or outside of business.  You are representing your business and your private life at all times, and people notice both.

My high school senior English teacher taught us: “Everyone must be able to express themselves in public.”  Last week we discussed that you are marketing yourself if you are speaking before a group of people or if you are having a conversation with one other person.  You must be able to speak in intelligent, grammatically correct terms and be able to articulate your thoughts in a sincere manner to whomever you are speaking.  All situations are equally important opportunities for you.

My Daddy told me: “When you tell people the truth, you don’t have to remember what you have said.”  In other words, when you lie, or misrepresent yourself, your product, your service, or your pricing, you have to remember what you have said and to whom.  I realize that companies sometimes change their pricing or product line; that is reasonable and acceptable.  However, when someone changes what they say almost by the hour or with each person with whom they are speaking, there is a problem.  I have actually heard someone revise their pricing multiple times during a single conversation.

Bob Burg, in his books, Endless Referrals and The Go Giver, teaches us: “People do business with, and refer business to, people that they know, like, and trust.”  How do we accomplish this type of situation?  We must build relationships with those people we meet, allowing both parties to learn about each other, decide if we like each other, and develop a trust level where we can risk our reputations on referrals.  Your networking partners, with whom you have built relationships, will be your walking, talking marketing representatives.

Going back to my high school days, I knew an Army officer, Major Jack Cook.  He taught me: “Anything worth doing at all is worth doing right the first time.  When you have to redo anything, you first have to undo the damage caused by the first mistake that you made.”  While we all make mistakes, we all should attempt to do everything right the first time, to the best of our ability.  If we make an honest mistake, take responsibility for it, fix it with everyone involved, and take public steps to reassure everyone how it will not be repeated.  Learn from your mistakes.

Have you had anyone teach you anything by what they have said to you in your past?  Have you remembered and applied what they said to you?  Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@SOC4Now.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.  We learn from our past experiences and from what others say to us.  Remember that when you speak to others; your words may have an impact on their lives for a long time.

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