Weekly Edge

Out of Office or Out of Your Mind?

Heather Frame - Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Each week when we send out our e-newsletter we're inundated with replies detailing that people are "out of office". 

Now don't get us wrong, we love a good out of office reply, but we see some shockers here on a weekly basis.

Here's some of our least favourites.

1. The grammatically incorrect / spelled incorrectly reply.  With spell check there's really no excuse.

2. The too brief reply. We got one simply saying "On leave <> - cheers".  There's no space limit on most out of office systems - give a little more. 

3. The reply that only lists a phone contact.  If someone's chosen to email you, please, give them an alternate email contact (it's clearly their preferred method of contact).

4. The expired date.  This one kills us.  Joe is out of the office until 21 June (only it's 27 June now!).  If you're going to put an out of office on - diarise to take it back off again!

5. The no end date.  "I'm out of the office from 4.30pm Thursday".  Until???


Here are some out of offices we've loved:

Greetings and I hope you are well.
 
Just letting you know that I will be away on leave for the next few weeks and that my dedicated Finance Manager <> will continue to manage all matters during this time.
 
<> is fully across and briefed on all current and potential client needs so please feel free to call him on <> or email him on <> should you require any assistance.
 
My fellow Directors <> and <> will also be supporting <> during this time with any new or additional property investment finance or home loan needs.
 
Thanks for your continued support and I will be in touch on my return.
 
Regards,
John

<> 

Hi there,

I trust that you are well!

I am currently on Annual Leave until the 20th July.

I will be clearing my inbox every 3 days.  However, if there is any urgent issue please call my mobile on (mobile number given here)

Take care and we will chat soon!

Many Thanks
Tina
<>

 Hi,

As a salesperson I'm away from my desk for much of the day showing properties, dealing with clients and signing contracts.

It's my policy to check emails twice a day, but if you need me more urgently, please feel free to call me on my mobile <>.

I look forward to talking with you soon!

best wishes,
<>

 Will your out of office be forgettable or useful? Embarrassing or memorable? Helpful or painful?

Missing Resources

Heather Frame - Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Here’s a great quote form Zig Ziglar to challenge your thinking

‘All resources are not obvious; great managers find and develop available talent.’

DON'T WE ALL

Heather Frame - Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Hmmm… here’s a story to make you think.  It comes from http://www.indianchild.com/inspiring_stories.htm 

I was parked in front of the mall wiping off my car. I had just come from the car wash and was waiting for my wife to get out of work.

Coming my way from across the parking lot was what society would consider a bum.

From the looks of him, he had no car, no home, no clean clothes, and no money. There are times when you feel generous but there are other times that you just don't want to be bothered. This was one of those "don't want to be bothered times."

"I hope he doesn't ask me for any money," I thought.

He didn't.

He came and sat on the curb in front of the bus stop but he didn't look like he could have enough money to even ride the bus.

After a few minutes he spoke.  "That's a very pretty car," he said.

He was ragged but he had an air of dignity around him. His scraggly blond beard kept more than his face warm.

I said, "thanks," and continued wiping off my car. 

He sat there quietly as I worked. The expected plea for money never came.

As the silence between us widened something inside said, "ask him if he needs any help." I was sure that he would say "yes" but I held true to the inner voice.

"Do you need any help?" I asked.

He answered in three simple but profound words that I shall never forget.

We often look for wisdom in great men and women. We expect it from those of higher learning and accomplishments. 

I expected nothing but an outstretched grimy hand. He spoke the three words that shook me.

"Don't we all?" he said.

I was feeling high and mighty, successful and important, above a bum in the street, until those three words hit me like a twelve-gauge shotgun.

Don't we all?

I needed help. Maybe not for bus fare or a place to sleep, but I needed help. I reached in my wallet and gave him not only enough for bus fare, but enough to get a warm meal and shelter for the day. 

Those three little words still ring true. No matter how much you have, no matter how much you have accomplished, you need help too. No matter how little you have, no matter how loaded you are with problems, even without money or a place to sleep, you can give help.

Even if it's just a compliment, you can give that.

You never know when you may see someone that appears to have it all.  They are waiting on you to give them what they don't have. A different perspective on life, a glimpse at something beautiful, a respite from daily chaos, that only you through a torn world can see.

Maybe the man was just a homeless stranger wandering the streets. Maybe
he was more than that. 

Maybe he was sent by a power that is great and wise, to minister to a soul too comfortable in themselves. 

Maybe God looked down, called an Angel, dressed him like a bum, then said, "go minister to that man cleaning the car, that man needs help."

Don't we all?

Tough times never last but tough people do

Heather Frame - Wednesday, November 13, 2019

There’s no doubt about it life can be a great adventure.  But sometimes, life can throw you some real challenges as well.

So, if you’re facing some challenges now, if things aren’t all rosy like it is on facebook, then this message is for you… 

We hear from a lot of business owners who are doing it tough.  So, we thought we’d share with you some of what we often tell those who are doing it tough around us.

First, we tell them they are not alone.  And despite what you see on facebook, nobody’s life is perfect.  Fact is, we all have our battles.  We also tell these people about a book we’ve read that helped us get through the tough times.

It’s called ‘Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do’.  It’s chock full of old-world, common sense wisdom that really packs a punch.

One line from the book that really resonates with us is 

“When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this: You Haven’t!”

So even though things might seem really bad, you are not beaten until you give up.  There is always something you can do.

Fact is, all of us get challenged.  All of us will encounter some kind of tragedy in our lives.  However, it’s our ability to pull ourselves up off the canvas and take another swing that will determine if we get through or not.

So when things are bad, we tell ourselves ‘Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do.’

It’s a great mantra to take to heart.  We wish you well in your business and life.

Just remember, ‘Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do.’

And also, ‘When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this: You Haven’t!’

Tell me your secret

Marcus Everett - Wednesday, November 06, 2019

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”
 Mark Twain

Rich man versus poor man

Heather Frame - Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Here is a great saying that we have been living by for the last few months.  It is making life easier and gives us more time to focus on what we are good at.

 Rich Men Spend Money to Save Time

 Poor Man Spend Time to Save Money

 What are you doing that is taking you away from your core focus?

3 steps to great service…

Heather Frame - Wednesday, October 23, 2019

So, when is great service really great?

 

Let’s say we go to a restaurant and sit down.  The waitress is polite, greets us perfectly and serves us so well we feel obligated to order a little more expensive wine.

 

It’s poured and served with a great skill…

 

We order our meal and are having a great time…

 

The meal arrives and it’s bad, we mean really bad.  Now, no matter how good the service, a lack of delivery reminds us that customer service is about the whole experience, not just the interaction.

 

It doesn’t matter how good the WOW factor is, if you can’t deliver the basics…

 

So, here’s our 3 steps…

 

  1. Deliver with consistency.  This is by far the most important of the three steps.  Every time someone calls your company, the phone should be answered the same way, the orders processed systematically, the services delivered with regularity so I can trust that you know what you are doing and I can feel good about coming back and referring my friends.  Remember, you can’t WOW a customer until you have at least satisfied them.
  2. Make it easy for people to buy.  Consistency is a start, but if you make it hard to do business with you, then no-one can ever be WOW’ed.  Everything from ability to contact people, websites, emails to payment methods, delivery choices and so on.  All of these things you need to make sure you are easier or at least as simple and easy as any of your competitors.  Ring them, go to their websites, do as much market research as you need to, to make sure buying from you is both simple and easy.
  3. WOW people.  Satisfaction is boring, you have to do something your customers don’t expect.  Check your industry and then check 3 or 4 others to find out what is now expected as standard so you can dream up a strategy to WOW people.

 

Remember, great service is one thing, satisfaction with what someone is buying, backed up with great WOW type service is what counts.

A touching life story.....

Heather Frame - Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Hmmm… here’s a life story that might just change the way you look at things.  It comes from http://www.indianchild.com/inspiring_stories.htm


A young man was getting ready to graduate college. For
many months he had admired a beautiful sports car in a dealer's
showroom, and knowing his father could well afford it, he told
him that was all he wanted.


As Graduation Day approached, the young man awaited
signs that his father had purchased the car.  Finally, on the
morning of his graduation his father called him into his private
study.  His father told him how proud he was to have such a fine
son, and told him how much he loved him. He handed his son
a beautiful wrapped gift box.


Curious, but somewhat disappointed the young man
opened the box and found a lovely, leather-bound Bible.  Angrily
he raised his voice at his father and said, "With all your money you
give me a Bible?" and stormed out of the house, leaving the holy
book.


Many years passed and the young man was very successful in
business.


He had a beautiful home and wonderful family, but realized his
father was very old, and thought perhaps he should go to him.  He
had not seen him since that graduation day.  Before he could make
arrangements, he received a telegram telling him his father had
passed away, and willed all of his possessions to his son.  He
needed to come home immediately and take care things.
When he arrived at his father's house, sudden sadness and
regret filled his heart.


He began to search his father's important papers and
saw the still new Bible, just as he had left it years ago.  With
tears, he opened the Bible and began to turn the pages.  As he
read those words, a car key dropped from an envelope
taped behind the Bible.


It had a tag with the dealer's name, the same dealer who had the
sports car he had desired.  On the tag was the date of his graduation
and the words...PAID IN FULL.


How many times do we miss out on things we desire because they are not
packaged as we expected?

What assumptions are you making?

Heather Frame - Wednesday, October 09, 2019

So often breakthroughs happen when you challenge assumptions.  In business you can’t guess what your customers want…. and, if you do, your promotions will most likely fail.  You’ve got to challenge common assumptions about your business, your customers, your prospects, etc.

 Take prospects for instance.  Most business owners assume certain things about their prospects that in many cases are way off the mark.

 In our business we challenge clients to give us proof on their assumptions.

 For example, one client said that his customers wanted the cheapest price and that this was the primary motivation in buying his product.  On closer inspection we found that sure, price was important, but confidence that the product was going to work and work long term was the key driving force that led to the sale.  Imagine if we hadn’t challenged the client?  All his marketing would have been based on price.  This happens more times than you think.

 So, when was the last time you challenged your own assumptions?  Or the assumptions of those around you?

 Remember, to get a breakthrough you often have to challenge your assumptions.

Hmmm…. Habits

Heather Frame - Wednesday, October 02, 2019

Something to make you think….

 

"Motivation gets you going but habit gets you there." - Zig Ziglar

 

Hmmm….Habits…. which ones do you have that you know you should give up?  And what new ones do you know you need to create?