Well that’s your job! How about doing it?

Patient goes into hospital for a test. Papers are filled out to have results sent to doctor. Doctor does not receive results one week later. Doctor tells you to call hospital and find out where the results are. You call hospital and speak to someone who tells you they will send results right over. Two days later doctor still has no results. Now considering the medical world is probably solely keeping the fax industry in business this is surprising. I call back. She doesn’t know why the doctor did not receive them but if I give her the address she will mail it. “But you have all that information? After all, you supposedly sent them the other day.” Now as to not piss her off, I mena upset her, I say “Perhaps there is something wrong with the fax on your end or their end.” “Oh, they weren’t faxed, they were mailed.” “Oh, …

Rules. Destroying creativity one person at a time.

When I was a kid we had no rules. When we played games we made the rules up along the way. We were creative, imaginative and had lots of fun. We also had a fight here or there and ended up not talking to someone ever again. Then I grew up and entered the world of “The Workplace.” Full of rules, policies and procedures, it seemed that creativity and imagination lost their place. So when I am out and about and see parents interfering in a childhood game, by imposing their rules and not letting kids be creative, get imaginative and argue a bit, I get worried. Please don’t take their imagination away. Their turn will be coming. But just in case the parents keep imposing their rules there is hope……..Some organizations recognize that allowing people to be creative and to play is still a good thing. It is how new products, ideas, and …

What do you mean your team is not engaged? Maybe you need to P.L.A.Y.

When environments go bad, teams need to do their part to make the best of a situation or turn that situation around. One of the best things a team leader can do is P.L.A.Y. with his or her team.  Praise – Now more than ever you need to praise them, their work and their contribution. You should be doing it regularly, but sometimes we get too busy, forget or don’t think it is important. Bad environments usually stem from organization changes (such as new policies/layoffs), bad company news or dare I say a bad manager. Everyone on your team is an asset and they should know that – today.  Listen – What’s really on the minds of your team? Ask them. Hear what they have to say. And no matter how difficult it is for you to do, do not respond with your canned answers, corporate speak or negation of …

Are your customers thanking and engaging you?

Everyone talks about how employers can engage employees or how businesses can engage customers. But did you ever stop and think about how customers can engage us? These three rocks were given to me by a client several years ago. They sit on my desk as a reminder of how I made a difference in the life of someone else. They are my anchor to keep doing the work I do. They are also a reminder of how important it is to thank or stay in touch with my customers by doing/giving something personal. Carol hand painted these rocks. She didn’t go out and buy some commercial paperweight. She knew I was a Batman fan – the original Batman. She knew the name of my company is Never Grow Up. She took me and my personal interests in mind when taking time out of her life to thank me. How are you thanking your …

Are you a good meeting participant? A bad meeting is everyone’s fault.

Tired of attending meetings? Ever wonder what their purpose is? Does your organization suffer from too many meetings? Do you find that you attend meetings with no point? Are you holding meetings to plan and schedule future meetings? Congratulations! You are now part of a group of people who employees, coworkers and committees want to push off the roof of a building. Once upon a time people looked forward to being invited to a meeting; it made them feel important. These days people run as far as they can when a meeting invitation appears and spend more time complaining about the meeting than turning it into a valuable experience. But did you ever think that maybe you’re part of the blame??????   Here are some thoughts to get you thinking next time you’re sitting in a meeting doodling or counting ceiling tiles rather than being present. And don’t worry I’m …

Now this is what I call Customer Service!

When I opened my mother’s cell phone bill the other day I thought for sure I was imagining the numbers. Then I realized what had happened……… After an extended hospital stay, a rehab stay, and being bored with television, her “20” minute per month plan didn’t cut it. So I picked up the phone to call Verizon Wireless. (I called from my land line just in case). Now first of all I spoke to a person. Yes, I had to go through a couple of prompts like entering the number in question and whether or not I spoke English, but I spoke to a person. And not only was Pam a real person, she spoke my language; the version of English that I use on a daily basis. I explained to Pam what happened and was not looking for anything but what we could do moving forward. I thought there were …

Mom was right! Now she’s running the business.

Shortly after my dad died I was riding in the car with my mother when I turned to her and said “You were right.” Mom looked at me confused and said “huh, about what?” My response, “About everything. Consider that statement a blanket.” We both laughed. But seriously, I wasn’t way off in my thinking. Every one of us ignored the advice of our parents growing up. They couldn’t possibly be right. We didn’t listen and too many times we ended up learning from our mistakes. The great thing was they kept their mouth shut and let us learn. Organizations can learn a lot from this. I’ve always believed that letting people make mistakes is the way they learn best. Most people don’t learn as much from a success as they do from a setback. Most people don’t learn as much from a success as they do from a bad business deal. …

The Gulf Oil Spill Was My Fault (and everything else wrong with this world)

And I’m very sorry. Now that we know that Rich DiGirolamo is responsible for every ill on this planet let’s move on and fix things. Let’s start with the tourism and fishing industry that is about to be impacted in the Gulf. I still cannot believe how much time is spent pointing fingers and passing blame in this world. It happens in the media. It happens in the government. And without a doubt it is happening at the very company that employs you; perhaps you have even been on the wrong side of that pointed finger. I used to get my laughter reading people’s comments at the end of news articles and blogs on the web. But then I realized something; these people are as much a part of the problem as the current problem at hand; perpetuating negativity and never really offering solutions or ideas that someone might pick up. It’s …

Look behind the counter……It’s SuperBeth!

When I walked in to Opticare yesterday morning something was not right. The only person behind the counter was Beth (the office manager); usually there are 400,000 employees behind the counter. Beth was on the phone; clearly she was dealing with a serious matter. She still managed to acknowledge me and make me feel welcome. When she got off the phone she checked someone else in and walked me to the exam room. I made the comment about her being alone. Her response (in a sing-song like manner): “Well it’s Monday morning; this one is sick; this one’s kid has something going on; someone died over the weekend.” I laughed. She laughed. But here’s the great thing. Her laughter really was laughter. Beth wasn’t annoyed. She wasn’t troubled. She just jumped in and became SuperBeth! Several years ago that place was a mess. Employees were miserable, backstabbing, incompetent; I could go on and on. I …