What gift cards might really be saying about you

Just finished reading an article in USA Today where it mentioned that more people than ever are hoping to receive a gift card this year. And while I give gift cards, heck just I bought one last night, and they do make gift giving so much easier, have you ever really thought about some of the other reasons people give gift cards: Like you really don’t know much about the person whom you’re giving that gift card. Maybe this year you should give yourself a gift instead; the pleasure of getting to know that recipient. Learn their likes and dislikes; their hobbies and interests. Hmmm….She takes a Zumba class at the local Park & Rec. Maybe pay for her next series of classes? Heck while you’re there sign yourself up as well. You know you need to exercise a bit more. Or maybe you, the recipient, are such a pain in the …

If employees are not trained properly should the customer be honest?

I was a firsthand witness this past week to 2 incidents that led me to this question: If employees are not trained properly should the customer be honest?   Incident #1: Friend walks into Walmart to buy 5 Poinsettias. He puts all five on the belt. Cashier rings up four. He pays, leaves, and makes a comment to me about if they don’t know how to count it’s their problem. Incident #2: Having some work done on my house my contractor needs a piece of oak trim. I drive him down to Home Depot so he doesn’t need to take his truck. He buys a four foot piece of oak. Oak is priced by the foot. Cashier scans the item. Machine doesn’t ask how many feet are being purchased. It rings up as a one foot piece. He told me the piece of oak was my Christmas present from him since she didn’t charge him the right amount. When he left my house …

Talking “to” vs talking “with” someone. Do you know the difference?

And three hours later he/she finally shuts up and asks what is new with you. You were so exhausted (or irritated) that you have no interest in even replying. You wanted to take a nap. Of course you had already ripped your eyes out of their sockets and were not sure you could even find your way to the nearest bed. Oh c’mon, you know you’ve experienced this; the conversation with the person who just doesn’t seem to come up for air. Maybe it wasn’t three hours but it did seem so. I’ll bet it was at minimum a 20-minute run-on sentence. (Where is Mrs. Soff when I need her and her grammar rules?) It happens with family members. It happens with friends. It is particularly common in the workplace with managers and leaders who just have this incessant need to hear themselves talk; stifling creativity and rarely allowing for free exchange of ideas. Is …

Is your coworker/employee looking for a new job?

So this guy emails me and asks me to write a guest blog for him. I said sure. Then I checked him out. His name is Jeetesh Kathawaroo. Turns out he’s from South Africa.  He seemed like an okay guy so I said……”Hey, how about we swap. You write one for me too!” Plus I love the people of South Africa! So forget about asking Jeeves! Let’s Ask Jeetesh! Below I bring to you a writing from my new friend. (Of course I couldn’t help add a few of my own comments.) Charles’ customised keyboard did  little to disguise his intentions. I ran into a neighbour of mine the other day and asked him why he was  selling his house. He genuinely looked surprised and asked me how I knew. Mmm… lucky guess, but the large For Sale sign was a bit of a clue. The same  sort of thinking can also be found …

Employee to Customer: Where have you been? The Answer: ????

Last week I walked into a local retailer. Ben came over, shook my hand, asked how I’ve been, and then asked the question…………………….. “Where have you been?” Truth is I’ve had no reason to stop in. The product they sold me was great. I bought all my accessories from them. I was set. I was actually going in to buy one for my mom.   Yesterday standing in line at my local Starbucks a customer walked over to order her drink and the Barista enthusiastically said……………… Hi! Where have you been?   Now in the case of Ben he has my name, phone number, address etc. If he missed me that much he could have contacted me. In the case of the Starbucks employee maybe she has access to that customer’s information from a rewards card or something else. My point: Every employee has the ability (and perhaps should be …