In the race to embrace the latest changes, we sometimes overlook the power of a good old-fashioned approach. This week I visited a new business. A few days later, I emailed my contact to thank them for the meeting. Later that day I opened my post to get a letter from my contact acknowledging our meeting. How nice to see that extra effort in sending a letter. So three opportunities to stand out.
1. Send a letter. As the post has dropped off in favour of email it can be nice to go through the tactile process of opening a letter. It shows a little more effort (and the cost of a stamp).
2. Send a hand-written thank-you card in place of that email. It can be a little reminder of you on their desk.
3. Give a small “thank you” gift. To your customers, your employees or your contacts to acknowledge their support. They will remember you. Of course, some companies have a “no gift” policy, in which case reverting to the thank you card will still demonstrate their value to you.
To stand out from the crowd, we need to be different and that does not always have to be embracing the latest or most popular approach. Has this worked for you? Have you been on the receiving end of an old-fashioned approach and, if so, what has been your reaction? Please share.
The Week. On Monday I had an inspection visit for my application to WEConnect Europe. This organisation puts women-owned/managed businesses in touch with a number of corporates who are keen to support diversity. A tough process but I am delighted to be accepted. www.weconnect.org.uk. On Tuesday I attended the Coaching for High Growth Masterclass on Wednesday to meet another business keen to develop their business. Places still available for businesses who plan to grow 25%+ per annum. www.stjohns.co.uk/ The Leadership Forum was another success on Wednesday at which the strategic risk management tool was introduced. Two new members joined the Forum and it is pleasing to see business being discussed during and after the events. I attended a one-day innovation workshop with Pfizer on Thursday aimed at NHS related organisations. I ended the week reviewing and tweaking my telemarketing campaign.
Reading for the week. This book was recommended to me at an IoD event the other week. “Building the bridge as you walk upon it” by Robert E Quinn. I am looking forward to its arrival and read.
Lighter Reflections. I received a wonderful LinkedIn recommendation this week and was also asked to provide one for someone I have only met at a networking event. I have been reflecting on the huge “recommendation-gathering” activity of late with almost everyone expecting a recommendation for any type of service. I was actually asked for one from a printer who was 3 months late in delivering my business cards! I was tempted to respond with “I am delighted to acknowledge that it only took you 3 months to deliver my business cards and indeed you only got the colour wrong once. I had great enjoyment in apologising to new contacts for the absence of a card and indeed my handbag felt so much lighter without the weighty stack of cards. I truly admire the speed and efficiency of your Accounts Department in demanding payment of your invoice when I had not received the goods. Clearly your admin is top-notch in the invoice-generation process and I highly recommend that they take this best practice across to your print production facilities. I happily recommend your services to all of my competitors”. Good job I am too polite! Enjoy your week and see what you can find to smile about – make reflecting fun!
Future Forum Dates:
Highflyingdivas, 21st June, London – Beachcroft LLP
Highflyingdivas Forum, 22nd June, Chelmsford – Blogging for Business
Leadership Forum 5th July, Chelmsford – the HR Basics for those without HR, from Brian England, Chairman CIPD, Colchester & Ipswich