Sometimes, I really paint myself into a corner.
I was talking to students in S. Anthony Iannarino’s college class a few days ago, and I talked about how every step we take that leads us away from our true path ends up hurting us more. It’s one of those questions of fate, destiny, and choice, right?
(By the way, I figured out the image of where that came from and it was a cheesy 1980s fantasy movie that I saw probably 20 times).
I’ve got a nice hot cup of black tea merlot from Vintage Tea Works today. You?
WHAT CHOICE DO WE HAVE?
There are many customer service moments I’ve experienced that I wished had never happened. They almost always go like this, “There’s nothing I can do” or “It’s not in our policy” or “that’s just how it goes.” You’ve had those experiences too, right?
Only, there’s always a choice. Somewhere. Maybe the employee on duty hasn’t been properly empowered, but somewhere, a choice was made that pushed the problem away from great customer service (or service craftsmanship) into crappy customer service that we’ll gladly tell everyone we know about (I still say bad things about Southwest Airlines every chance I get, due to a choice they made once).
WE ALWAYS HAVE A CHOICE
Sometimes we mistake poor preparation for not having a choice (I had to get McDonalds – I ran out of time). Other times, we mistake our emotional limitations for a lack of a choice (he was disrespecting me – I didn’t have a choice). But there’s always a choice. That’s the most important lesson that I took from reading Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Between stimulus and response is humankind’s greatest ability: the ability to choose.
IT’S A REPEAT EXERCISE TO STRENGTHEN THIS MUSCLE
On the day I wrote this newsletter for you, something frustrating happened, and it was an event that followed three other frustrating experiences. I found myself dipping into depression. Immediately, my very old script kicked in: “I’m really depressed. I will go eat something really bad, because at least I can control that.”
But I didn’t do it. Instead, I caught myself. I heard the script play. I then said, “Well, eating something really bad won’t change what’s happened and you’re doing so much work on your fitness and health. Why would you want to mess that up just because you’re upset?”
I’ve fairly much never caught myself this way before. Most times, I just am lucky that there’s no bad food around. Or, there is, and I just eat it all and feel bad later. But this time, I took a deliberate action and made a choice that I wanted to make.
That’s the goal. And now that I’ve done it once, the goal is to repeat it. Often. Until it’s the default choice, and there’s a new script in place.
WHAT’S THIS HAVE TO DO WITH BUSINESS?
Everything. Your buyer has to feel like they have choices (but not too many – remember the paradox of choice?). Your buyer should feel that the choices they have acknowledge them in some way. For instance, lots of our courses have a payment plan, because we know that this is often coming from your pocket and not the company budget.
And it has everything to do with your career decisions. As I said to Anthony’s students, the very easy choice is to let life happen to them, to fall into some lame job that doesn’t really relate to your passions, to fall into nothing, to fall out and become homeless. But the choices to be amazing and do something stellar are all there, waiting to be made. And though they’re a little harder to make, those choices, they are beautiful when you see them through.
LAST CALL FOR OUR NEW YORK EVENT
We have a few tickets left in our New York event, ImpactNEXT. We’re about to announce the next few events in the series, but New York will be unique in several ways. If you want to be there where it all began, please consider checking it out now. I plan to make it very much worth your time and expense.
See you next week?
Oh, there’s an this letter to you, and an audio version, too!
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