Is Customer Service a Lost Art?

customerserviceResearch shows that 8 out of 10 Americans prefer to shop online rather than visit a store in person! After last week-end, I can certainly understand why!

I admit I do a lot of my shopping online;  but for some things I just feel the need to see and touch before I make the purchase! My husband has always loved a road trip out of the office when we get the chance, so he was willing to make a 30 minute drive to one of the largest malls in our area! He is a rare breed that likes to see new things and doesn’t mind me looking and being very selective before I make a purchase.

I knew what stores I wanted to visit, so we checked the directory and made sure they were still in the same place; and armed with our list, budget and game plan we began the journey. Carmen had also planned to take me to lunch, so he checked to make sure he had their latest app special on his phone, as this was going to be a rare treat for us!

As we entered the first store, (one of my favorites), I looked to my left and saw a person leaning on the counter at the cash register with his iPhone texting: he didn’t even acknowledge we had entered his space! I said hi and realized he did not plan on responding and walked on to look for the items I was interested in. Now I am not judging, but when I saw the merchandise displayed in such an awful state, I thought maybe we had just missed the sale of the century!

Needless to say I did not find what I was looking for. My husband suggested we ask, and I looked at him and back to the person still texting at the counter, and decided that probably would not gain us any traction in our search, so I proceeded to depart without interrupting the only other person in the store- the one assigned the job that day to serve me.  Again we passed right by and not one word was said, nor did the texting miss a beat!

The next store was a little better! The lady was still at the counter by the cash register but she did greet us and said, “let me know if there is anything I can help you with” and then immediately answered the cell phone in her hand and turned away and started her conversation!

I did find something I needed and wanted at this store, and it was on sale! We both were happy and ready to check out and be on our way! We went back to the same counter, and the lady had a line! Why? She was involved on a call on her cell phone. Others got disrespectful and she got off the phone and handled them just enough to get them on their way without even a thank you. When it was our turn I asked her what her “dream job” would be? She looked at me as the phone started ringing, and replied: “I don’t plan on working, I’m marrying rich!” I wished her well and went on my way thinking: “am I expecting too much of people here?”

Sound like I am making this up? I can assure you it even got worse as we continued our quest! I am glad that the gift of being positive is one of my strengths, so that I could laugh at what we were experiencing and not let anything or anyone spoil our time off together!

Not all was lost as we did manage to find some wonderful items, and also eventually excellent examples of  caring and hard working people that restored my faith that customer service is not totally a lost art! One was at a large well known store and when I looked at her name tag I noticed she was the store manager. She was on the floor herself doing a great job of helping her customers. When we went to checkout with her I asked, “why are you working the register today?” She replied with a smile, “it happens when people scheduled to work aren’t able to come in, and I can’t find replacements.” Sounded like this happens a lot, and I thanked her for the great service, and immediately tweeted it to her company!

Having lunch was our last stop, and it was a wonderful experience. We sat there and discussed how happy we are to have a company where the talent we represent love people, and will do whatever it takes so that their audiences and our clients who hire them receive a “WOW” factor experience.

It brought to mind one of our speakers, Dean Lindsay, who is known as the “Dean of Sales and Service.”  He recently received an endorsement fromdeanlindsayworking
his client on this very topic. This is what they had to say: “we hired Dean to speak to our group about great customer service, but he did more…he SHOWED us exceptional service. Dean spent countless hours understanding our business, our customers and our service mantra. He quickly became a part of our team and was able to communicate our vision to employees around the world. Our company hired a keynote speaker but got a life-long business partner and resource for our team.”

The good news is: help is available for companies and employees that see the need to want to change and give “exceptional” service to their customers! Those are the clients of my company, because I have the talent and the solutions that can make a difference for them for a lifetime!

Now off to do the work I love;  finding clients for the speakers I represent that see the value and urgent need to take action, and are willing to hire the best to help them!

Sue Falcone

Sue Falcone

 

 

 

 

Is It Time to “Spring Clean” Your Business?

springcleanFinally it’s that time of year: “Spring Cleaning!”  Seems like Spring took a long time to get here, and we are not quite sure it’s going to last! I remember growing up as the snow melted and the warm weather started moving in, it was time to make things new and fresh after the dullness of winter!

Clothes changed, colors brightened up, and we spent a lot time redoing and fixing things in our home inside and out to welcome in the sunshine and new beginnings!

“Spring Cleaning” somehow makes us feel better inside, but did we ever think about addressing our work life, where we really spend the most time?

I am honored to have some professional experts here at “Simply” Sue Speaks! Global Booking Agency that share with me and their audiences how the “Spring Cleaning” should also include our businesses and work areas! Here are some tips of what needs to be on your list!

                                    “Spring Cleaning” Your Business:
1.  Mindset- How are you connecting with those you serve in your business? This is the beginning of the 2nd Quarter- are you working at your highest level and living your plan and purpose?  Kelly Swanson- Award-winning Storyteller, Comedian, Motivational Speaker and Author is showing her audiences how to sell more, lead better, and have more impact and influence in their industry.

2. Physical Issues- Are daily decisions about paper overwhelming? Need to put paper “in its place?” Barbara Hemphill- Award-winning Productivity and Organization Expert shows her audiences how to tackle this area of their business and succeed!

3. Technology Overload- Think you can’t keep up?  Do you work 24/7 and still feel there is not enough time to spend on technology?  AlfredPoor- Internationally recognized Technology Expert is sharing tips of how to manage the marketing of your business in an effective and efficient manner with his audiences. He takes the complex concepts of technology and delivers practical content that can be put to use right away.

4.  Financials Out of Control- How are you handling the risks and challenges of being a business owner?  Debbie Wright, Risk Management Expert is showing her audiences facts and workable game plans that will meet their business challenges and risks they face; and win!

Tackling these 4 areas are key to you having a great rest of your business year! Ready to start your “Spring Cleaning” not only in your home, but also in your business?  We would love to help you!

Sue Falcone

Sue Falcone

 

 

 

Part 2 of “The Secrets of Managing Your Time: from the Experts!”

wow1I knew this was an important topic for all Entrepreneurs and those that dream of being one, but was overwhelmed with the response to the advice shared last week from the talent found at “Simply” Sue Speaks! Global Booking Agency!  Glad to hear we are sharing solutions to this issue of having enough time to do it all!

Did you know Americans work more hours than any other country in the world?  Is having your own business the answer to being able to choose your own hours and be your own boss? Looks like there is still an issue on how one has the time to accomplish everything!  Our experts are ready to share some more valuable tips that can possibly change your life forever!

Alfred Poor, Speaker, Best-seller Author and Technology Expert shares how he manages his day so that he has time to accomplish all he needs to do!  “I break my day into 90 minute segments with a 15 minute intervals between. That gives me times of head-down concentration, with breaks to make phone calls, answer emails, and post on social media. I also provide time for planning at the start and end of each day so that I can keep an eye on the big picture, as well as on the deadlines that might be looming around the corner. I also have a note posted on my desk that asks: “What do I want to accomplish TODAY?”

Alfred, a graduate of Harvard and sought after speaker on college campuses and technology events, is a full-time professional speaker and author with an international reputation. He is the author or co-author of more than a dozen books, as well as thousands of articles in print and on-line. He brings energy and humor to his highly-interactive presentations. Traveling from Pennsylvania, looks like Alfred’s advice is working in his professional and personal life.

Coming from across the country from where I am located is Julie Austin, speaker, award-winning author, inventor, and innovator. Julie is from the fast-paced lifestyle of Los Angeles, and shares: “My one tip on time management would be to make out a to-do list the night before. That way you can hit the ground running first thing in the morning! I do anything that requires ‘heavy brain focus’ first thing in the morning, make all calls before 5, and do anything, like shopping or cleaning after hours when you don’t really need ‘peak’ brain performance!”

Julie believes “how you beat your competition is through innovation.” As an inventor/innovator who “turned, $5.00 and a lump of clay into an International, NASDAQ winning product, “SWIGGIES-the Wrist Water Bottle by Hydrosport,” Julie appears all over the country sharing the techniques she learned as a former gatekeeper of an International Academy Award-winning production company, commercial actor and TV host. She is featured in the books “Patently Female” and “Girls Think of Everything,” and has a best-seller “The Money Garden” available now.  “Why hire Julie?  If you don’t your competition will!”

Heading back to North Carolina on our time with the experts today, we find PJ Sawvel, award-winning communicator with a passion for helping people turn their words into vehicles that drive profits, productivity, and professional development. She shares: “I begin my day by asking two simple questions. What’s one thing I can do today to move my business forward?  What’s one thing I can do today to move my family relationships forward? Then I make sure I do those two things! Additionally, I schedule my physical exercise and spiritual meditation at the top of every day because that’s the way I take care of me! When these three things are taken care of–God, family, and business–then the rest takes care of itself!”

PJ Sawvel as a former top producer in real estate, insurance, and the brokerage markets–is an accomplished face-to-face communicator. In the mid-1990’s, she changed lanes and became an award-winning investigative reporter, founding president of a grassroots non-profit, and now author of the 2014 Global E-Books Gold Media winner, Under the Influence: The Town That Listened to Its Kids. These roles have given her the rare insider’s view of the connections that exist between intentions, words, and the target audience–and the subsequent results. She is a sought after keynote speaker, and workshop and breakout session presenter.

We have one more tip that is sure to let us see what taking care of our time now can do for our future!

Rachael Wonderlin is a nationally recognized expert in the Dementia Care field. For as long as Rachael can remember she has wanted to care for aging adults. Even though Dementia in some form affects 1 in every 3 seniors,  this can be a very difficult topic to discuss. But not for Rachael! She has a world-wide following on her blog and is a contributor to the Alzheimers Reading Room where she shares all aspects of the aging process and Dementia. With so many challenges in her work life, and personal life for her time, Rachael shares: “I am an A Type personality, so I enjoy being busy. I am into old-fashioned-to-do-lists. My work items items I keep in a special notebook, and my personal to-do list I have on my phone. Keeping them separate really helps!”

Rachael is a former child film actress, and although she loved acting in commercials, video, and film, she wanted to focus on her education and the calling she had early in life of caring for aging adults. While in college she did not give up her passion for performance. She comes alive in front of an audience, and now with the topic of Dementia as her platform, she is able to speak and educate her audiences in a fun, comical, and engaging way. Rachael has a new book coming out soon from  John Hopkins Press:  What to Remember When They Forget.

With the varied lifestyles, careers, and personal abilities we all have, time is very valuable and precious to each of us! One of our other speakers, Carol Andrews recently shared this: “Put a premium on your time. You’ll never get back what you’ve wasted!”

Better prepared to face the issue of time management in your business and personal life?  We would love to hear your comments, and how we can help you and your audiences in the future.

Sue Falcone

Sue Falcone

The Secrets of Managing Your Time as an Entrepreneur: from the Experts!

wowEntrepreneurs around the world are seeking answers on how to handle a major issue: how to have the time to do what they love; and also have a personal life! I recently was asked this question at a conference I attended, and knew this needed to be addressed in more detail by the experts!

I sought out some of our speakers, trainers, presenters, entertainers, coaches, and authors, that are represented here at “Simply” Sue Speaks! Global Booking Agency. They are successful entrepreneurs and business owners with very different fields of expertise and business models; but I knew they had learned secrets along their journey that hopefully they would be willing to share! And share they did!

We each have the same amount of time: 24 hours a day, 168 hours a week, and normally 8,760 hours a year. In making a choice to have your own business instead of working for someone else, one clear thread ran through all the experts’ comments: you need to have a positive entrepreneurial mindset, and create a plan that allows you the freedom to have a blended and balanced lifestyle. Your success is not based on how many hours you spend at working, but rather having a plan that allows you the freedom to choose what is most important and how you spend the hours to accomplish your plan.

Award-winning Global Entrepreneurship Speaker and Professor Gary Palin shares this:
“Balance is key! Take the time to have a family walk, including your dog, every day.”

Professor Palin speaks and trains all the right ways to operate your business plan for success, but he knows you must intentionally take the time daily to spend with your family and, in his case, the awesome dog- Spirit, a Rhodesian Ridgeback.  He is an ‘in-demand’ global speaker on all areas of Entrepreneurship, and when he travels Spirit misses him I am sure.

Kelly Swanson, motivational speaker, comedian, award-winning storyteller, and the author of “Who Hijacked My Fairy Tale?” shared in her business she has to have:
1.   A clearly defined business plan for the year with areas of top priority and focus.
2.  Be able to turn that plan into daily/weekly/monthly action steps based on priority and deadlines.
3.  Whenever something comes across your desk/email ask yourself: is this a priority and does it have to be done now?
4.  Daily ask yourself: what is best use of my time today? Stick to it.
5.  Learn to say NO to things that distract you from your top priorities.

Kelly is a Wife and Mom of an 11 year old son, and her business is a “family” business. She lives what she shares and has fun doing it all! She is an excellent blogger, and author, and is a sought after keynote speaker for events across the country.

Barbara Hemphill-known as the “Paper Tiger Lady” offers these tips: “I spend the first hour of everyday in quiet time reminding myself of the “why” for my business. What is it that is important enough to accomplish in my life that makes me willing to do the three most important things in my business today to be profitable?”

Barbara is an internationally recognized Organization and Productivity Expert, Speaker and Author. Her recent book Less Clutter More Life is to help people “accomplish their work and enjoy their lives” by not only handling the paper and digital clutter, but also addressing the emotional and spiritual clutter.  She is a sought after speaker who travels across the country sharing a practical message of change.

Can you see from these successful Entrepreneurs some ways that you could change what you are doing now concerning having enough time to do it all? I want to always be a “long-life learner” and I learned some things here that I am beginning right now!

Hope you will come back next week, as we share some more time management tips from the experts who are successful at making it happen! Are you looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? Save time, stress, and money by taking a look at our speakers found here at www.simplysuespeaks.com 

Sue Falcone

Sue Falcone

 

 

 

How Do You Face Change?

change1In our ever changing world, how do you face it?  I am learning an amazing solution concept from one of our new Speakers, Dean Lindsay, who presents this:
“Change is inevitable, Progress is a Choice!”

When Dean first shared this with me, I thought, “isn’t it amazing I can still keep learning no matter my age or stage from those that are placed into my life?  I started processing through this and have found we all face change differently, but the key is: do we always intentionally choose to make progress?

Since Intentional is our “Word of the Year” here at “Simply” Sue Speaks! Global Booking Agency, I realized in my life I didn’t always make the right choices in facing change that would lead to progress. A good example is one I am facing now! We are expanding and growing rapidly, and I want to be organized and have all the right systems and processes in place to handle the changes, but due to time and happenings I can take a shortcut, which ends up in the long run being the wrong choice! So no progress is made, and I end up having to go back and handle the same issue, which wastes time and resources. Has this ever happened to you?

We are also in the process of designing a new website. That is why you do not see Dean listed here with our other speakers; but it will soon be finished and launched and showcase each of them even better! I applied this concept in knowing I am making progress and it will soon be done and I can keep on moving on our many other projects and events for Dean and our other talent.

As you read this can you see how powerful this concept can be in your life and business? I am glad to have the opportunity of not only booking Dean for your upcoming events; but I also get the advantage of being able to experience his training and techniques first hand for myself!

We would love to hear your comments here about how you face change; and also do you see how this new concept could work for you.

Dean Lindsay square headshotTo see more about Dean Lindsay-“The DEAN of Sales and Service” see his website: www.deanlindsay.com and to book him for your upcoming event contact me direct at sue@simplysuespeaks.com or click on contact here on our current site.

 

 

 

 

From “Me” to “We!”

relaunchpictureHonored today to be featured on Award-winning Podcast show-RELAUNCH with host Joel Boggess and wife Dr.Pei. I shared my journey and the greatest “ReLaunch” moment in my life that guided my professional path into becoming a “we” rather than stay a “me!”

I am blessed to have achieved many dreams and goals in spite of my background and the many obstacles I faced. We all have stories to share, but mine has brought me to a unique and interesting place to be.

I thought after my corporate career ended that I would be speaking and writing for the rest of my days! I love it, and I was able to have a great following, but I realized there were many talented speakers, presenter, entertainers, trainers, coaches, and authors, that needed help in marketing to the places they couldn’t seem to reach, and negotiate for them the fees they needed. Some had a busy schedule and needed someone to handle the details of booking that would allow them to keep doing what they love the best-being in front of the audience speaking!

I realized it was no longer going to be about “me” as the speaker and author; but I was going to create a company that would represent hand-selected talent and help them “be heard and seen!”  Little did I realize it would grow and expand and reach out globally!

I am content to stay off the stage, and help others get to their stage!  Today I got back on the stage, only to share that it’s not about me at all! It is the “we” of speakers, event planners and clients, that I can connect perfectly together for an awesome unforgettable and memorable experience that I want to leave as my legacy!  I invite you to visit our website here and explore the awesome talent that is awaiting to become part of your upcoming event. Be looking for new speakers being added and a new website design soon that will showcase them even more!  To book your next event with our speakers contact me at sue@simplysuespeaks.com.

Hope you will listen to my podcast at www.ReLaunchShow.com/257 , and put RELAUNCH on your Play List! Thanks again to Joel and Dr. Pei for having me, and I look forward to meeting them in person one day.

Sue Falcone

Sue Falcone

 

 

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