Getting Close to the Customer

Remember: Getting close to a (current or potential) customer involves gathering facts and knowledge about them in order to develop an awareness of their expectations and perception of the organization.

Here are five tips to help you get close to your customer effectively:

  1. Examine Your Organizational Culture: You are unlikely to get close to your customers unless the culture of your organization encourages such. Therefore, staff should be trained to think ‘customer first’.
  2. Identify Your Customers: They may be internal or external customers. You should also distinguish between purchasers, those who pay for your product, and end users, those who actually use it.
  3. Profile Your Customers: A wide range of factors including gender, age, marital status, location, and lifestyle influence the behaviour and choices of your customers. These factors become useful when analysed, become useful in serving your customers appropriately.
  4. Assess Your Customers’ Opinions and Attitude: This will help you to know what they feel about your organization and most especially, your product and services. You can assess them via the internet, frontline staff.
  5. Act on Your Findings: Analyse the result of your research, interpret the data, and publicize your findings.

Start to maximize this tips, get close to a customer… … ….Today


Remember: Workplace conflict is an unavoidable consequence of professional life. Effective intervention from managers and supervisors ensures that the harm conflicts cause to relationships and productivity is minimal. It keeps relationships healthy, customers happy, and the business successful.

Common causes of conflict at work include:

  1. Differences in personality
  2. Differences in styles of working
  3. Miscommunication or misunderstandings
  4. Poorly-organised workplace
  5. Poor management
  6. Discrimination, harassment, etc.

Here are 5 tips for managing conflict in the workplace:

  1. Don’t ignore it – conflicts do not just disappear if you push them aside; issues become harder to tackle the longer you leave them. Deal with the problem as soon as you learn about it.
  2. Promote differences– adopt a positive culture towards differing opinions, lifestyles, and attitudes. If people see that discriminatory behaviour is not acceptable and is disciplined, they’ll be less likely to do it.
  1. Learn to listen actively – good listening skills are essential for resolving conflicts. Eliminate distractions, don’t listen with pre-conceived ideas, ask questions, and ensure you truly listen to what others are telling you. Encourage others to do the same.
  2. Attack the problem, not the person – one thing you cannot change is the fact that people have different perspectives and opinions, so do not criticise them. Instead, focus on identifying the cause of the conflict, promote tolerance and understanding, and aim to reach a solution.
  3. Be supportive – encourage employees who have certain knowledge and skills to help those colleagues who might not have these abilities, and do so yourself. Treat each person as an individual; don’t make judgments.


Keep the workplace relationship healthy, resolve a conflict… …. …TODAY!

Workplace Communication

Remember: Workplace communication is very important because it allows companies to be productive and operate effectively. Employees can experience an increase in morale, productivity and commitment, if they are able to communicate up and down the communication chain in an organization.

Ways to create effective communication in the workplace

  1. It is easier to communicate your passion and how you feel to your team via open meetings. In this kind of forum, they will not only hear what you are saying, they will also see and feel it.
  2. In official setting, communication via email remains potent. It will enable you to pass messages to your team members without pulling them out of their workstations.
  3. To effectively communicate with your team, you must create a receptive atmosphere. Avoid a tense environment at all costs because when you communicate in an overly intense manner, the message you are trying to share might not be well understood or retained.
  4. Use words that can be easily understood. When ambiguous words are used, you can be misunderstood.
  5. Your body language will pass your message faster and better. Master the art of using body language when communicating with your team. Stand/sit up straight, use smiles, handshakes and eye contact.
  6. Give room for feedback so that you can measure the effectiveness of your style of communication. It will also afford you the privilege of knowing if your message was well understood.

Work hard at these communication tactics by practicing them … …Today!

Good Compliments Re-enforce Desired Behaviour

Remember: Compliments are one of the best forms of workplace currency.They are free to give out, and when done properly, they can have a very positive impact on your career. Compliments are a form of structured gratitude, it is a step further than appreciation.  Compliments allows you explain the value the person has provided that made you appreciate them.

Types of Compliments

Whether you’re a manager looking for increased productivity from a staff member or a co-worker looking to work better with others, you can use the 5 types of compliments to get the job done. Each one re-enforces a desired behaviour through a process of creating a positive emotion for the recipient.

  1. Made your job easier:When someone takes something off your work plate, especially something that gives you a headache, share exactly how that made a difference in your day.
  2. Helped you feel better about your work:When someone makes you feel proud, inspired, or more satisfied with the work you do, you should explain how it helped you feel better.
  3. Made the company more money:Any time someone makes a measurable impact on revenue, you should explain how his or her efforts justified the cost of having them on staff.
  4. Saved the day:When a mega-problem arises, those who step in to fix it without asking deserve recognition for pitching in. It also helps to place emphasis on how much worse things could have gotten for the business if it had not been resolved.
  5. Avoided a disaster: Identifying a potential disaster and doing what was necessary to ensure it didn’t unfold should be rewarded with compliments explaining how, if allowed to occur, the disaster could have hurt the business.

When it comes to giving compliments to drive performance, quality matters most. Be detailed, sincere, and consistent in your delivery… …. … Today!


Remember: The expectancy theory that which we expect to happen is most likely to happen.  Be aware of your mental processes, the internal messages you give yourself.

If they start from a negative self-concept and negative expectations, your external behaviour will likely be non-assertive behaviour and you end up acting frustrated or angry.

On the other hand, if you start from a positive self-concept, and have positive expectations, your behaviour is more important apt to be to be assertive and you are more likely to feel confident.

Similarly, interpersonal relationships have a reciprocal quality about them. In a relationship with another person our expectations are likely to be self-fulfilling prophecy.

Turn it to your advantage by expecting the best from ourselves and others… … …Today!

Recovering From Mistakes

Remember: Mistakes are inevitable, they are proof of our imperfect nature. We say, do and make certain decisions that we wish we could take back.

There is no shame in making mistakes, but there is failure in not accepting, bracing up or recovering from that mistake to ensure it’s a one-time occurrence.

Here are six key aids to recovering from mistakes:

  1. Acceptance is Key: you can choose your actions but not the consequence, so it is important to accept the consequence of that mistake.
  2. Take the learning: reflect deeply on the experience and look out for lessons that could be learnt. If there are, then you have not failed rather you have embraced learning.
  3. Forgive yourself: forgiveness will help give you a clearer vision, so that you can set goals that will ensure that there’s no repeat of such mistake.
  4. Focus on your strength: your good quality and innermost strength will restore your confidence and boost your self-esteem.
  5. Address unresolved issues: acknowledge the problem from that mistake, admit responsibility, explain and apologise where necessary.
  6. Move on: you can’t afford to dwell on your mistakes. Recover and embrace newer opportunities.

No one is truly great until he has made mistakes, recovered and taken the learning’s.

Your past mistakes are the practical experiences you need to finish strong… … Today!

Avoiding Task Procrastination

Remember: Procrastination is the bane of Time Management. Ever had a task to do and you just don’t seem to know where to start from?

Well, one reason why one may tremble at the thought of beginning such tasks is because you are looking at the task in its totality. When you break down such a seemingly huge task into small chunks however, it becomes easier to deal with mentally.

This is where the Five Minute Method comes in. How does it work? The next time you have a task to do that you dreading or can’t seem to find the time for, take five minutes at the end or beginning of the hour and get started on it.

The Five Minute Method is especially useful in curbing procrastination as it provides a definite time to get started on things you may have been putting off for long. This is effective both for simple chores like cleaning off your desk or setting up your planner for the next day or big tasks such as writing a proposal or planning your presentation.

What task have you been postponing till now? Apply the Five Minute Method to disintegrate that seemingly huge task… … …Today!

Pause……..Deal with that Conflict

Remember: No two individuals have the same thought patterns, or indeed, points of view, thereby leading to the well-known fact that conflict is unavoidable in the workplace, it is therefore critical to acknowledge conflicts when they arise and address it promptly to maintain relationship values.

Conflict is no different from fire, if not handled properly it will escalate and ruin values, structures, and worst of all, relationships.

Do you want to resolve a conflict? Here are four key things you could do:

  1. Remove all masks to conflicts, be sincere about ironing things out and ultimately preserve relationships values.
  2. Communicate concisely and encourage dialogue, as this will help identify the real problem.
  3. Do not adopt a must win attitude. This always has a loser and a winner! Rather always look for consensus; which is simply a modified position that all sides can agree on.
  4. Look for a common ground as this is a bed rock for winning negotiations and developing several possible solutions to conflicts.

The gains of resolving conflicts cannot be over emphasized as this is critical in preserving relationship values. Resolve a conflict… … …Today!


Small Things are the Big Things

Remember: We are judged as excellent by our ability to deliver excellent results. The unsung part of that excellent result, however, is the excellent effort that has taken place to achieve the result.

Your excellent effort delivers the greatest part of the requirement for the excellent result. The balance comes from a unique combination of planning, execution and yes, good fortune.

Now what is excellent effort? Quite simply this means giving your best, while doing everything that is required, the way it is required. This means giving attention to the many small steps that are required in your role, project, task or situation. We remember the word of Mother Theresa who said “We cannot do great things on this earth, only small things with great love.”

For example, arriving early for work, is a small step that makes a big statement about your excellence, at the start of your workday.

So be faithful in the small things and bring out your excellence… … …Today!


Remember: Before embarking on a team task, it is of utmost importance that all team members agree to a systemically laid out action plan.

A concise, unambiguous plan that is fully supported by your team mates will help you avoid disappointing outcomes as well as provide a definite line-of-sight for the project.

A good action plan must provide answers to the following questions?

  • What is doable? How much improvement activity can we manage over the next few weeks?
  • What is fair? How can we ensure that everyone on the team is an equal partner in our improvement project?
  • Where do we need help? For what areas will we need the help of other work groups or managers or external resources? How will we go about getting the help we need?
  • What could go wrong? What obstacles are we likely to face and how can we prevent or work through them?

Ensuring that all these questions are answered before embarking on any project creates buy-in from all the team members while also securing participation on all fronts. An action plan will also serve to lay a realistic framework before work is embarked upon.


Embarking on a team project this week? Create a mutually agreeable team action plan before kicking off the project… … …TODAY!