Many times, customers want to be heard and treated as important even if you can’t solve their concern

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Sometimes it seems that it’s impossible to figure out what an angry customer really wants from you and your company. It’s not uncommon for an angry customer to continue to act out, or be abusive even though you’ve actually been able to resolve his or her apparent problem. This doesn’t make any logical sense on the surface, but it’s makes perfect “human sense”.

It is true that customers want their problem or issue resolved, but their anger doesn’t necessarily disappear instantly, when the problem is resolved. That’s because angry customers want some other things — human things, and if they…


It’s often the case that small businesses exist in a market that includes at least one, and often many other LARGE businesses or chains.

On the surface of it, it would seem that the small business is in competition with these giants, but that’s more of an illusion or a poor business strategy, rather than a reality.

Small businesses do not want to compete with the giants on the home field of the larger corporation.

Small businesses have unique capabilities, and can do things big business cannot, particularly when it comes to the experiences customers have.

The key is simple…


Welcome to the fire of an unhealthy workplace. Leadership may be the cure

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Summary: Some organizations have climates that are unhealthy for those that work in them. We call these organizations toxic organizations. Within toxic organizations conflict thrives like weeds. Read more about toxic companies.

Toxic Organizations

We can think of organizations as falling on a continuum. One end is anchored by organizations that function well. In the middle we find the average organization that is effective but could be better. Finally, we have the toxic organization, an organization that is largely ineffective, but is also destructive to its employees and leaders.

What Is A Toxic Organization?

A toxic organization shows two characteristics that distinguish it from healthier workplaces. First…


Consider these pitfalls when developing an informal leader

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In we provided a brief overview of the power of informal leaders in organizations. It makes sense for formal leaders to recognize the pivotal roles these “influence leaders” can play, and to develop their abilities when appropriate.

There are two different situations involving the development of an informal leader, and a third context where attempts to “develop” an informal leader are not recommended.

First is the situation where an informal leader already exists, and there is a desire to assist that person to become more successful in that role.

The…


Lack of focus can kill your startup in the first year

Lack of focus can kill your startup business
Lack of focus can kill your startup business
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It’s understandable that a small business owner, faced with the need to make a living and put food on the table, may want to use a shotgun approach to selecting services and/or products on which to base the business. This is particularly prevalent in some service oriented professions, like business and human resource consulting, organizational development and training fields. Let me share an example.

Some time ago a organizational development and training consultant I worked (both employed by same employer) was downsized. This was a year or two after I had left the employer. …


Focus on what you CAN control during unpleasant interactions

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Self-talk is at the core of staying calm and in control in the face of difficult situations.

Simply put, self-talk refers to the words and thoughts we say to ourselves.

Even if you aren’t aware of the exact words that you’re saying to yourself, be sure that you have this quiet internal process going on within you. It’s a very powerful force for helping you stay calm and changing your own behavior.

We can divide self-talk into two categories:

1. Negative self-talk makes it more difficult to find and use constructive solutions.

2. Positive self-talk is more likely to help…


When a bully figures out his/her nasty ways aren’t working, they tend to move on. Here’s how to send the message“It isn’t going to work with me”

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It Isn’t Going to Work with Me

One interesting thing about difficult people and bullies is that they aren’t stupid. They will tend to be more difficult when they feel what they are doing is having an effect on the target.

You don’t want to send the impression that the difficult behavior is getting to you. You want to send the exact opposite message — that the difficult behavior is not going to work with you.

What Does the Phrase “Not going to work with me” Really Mean?

When and if you allow difficult people to see they are succeeding at getting what they want, they will continue to use difficult techniques on you. If a person succeeds in…


If a tweet falls in the forest, does anybody hear? Tweets are wisps In the wind, and have less influence than most think

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There are so many reasons why social media has exploded in popularity, but let’s look at what it “feels like” to use it. And, then we’ll look at how things actually work.

It feels wonderful to be able to “have a voice”. Anyone can tweet or update anything they please, and that feels amazingly empowering, something that is psychologically important in a complex world, where people are both lonely and desperate for emotional connection, and feel powerless in the face of a world that fosters a feeling that we aren’t in control of our own lives. It’s easy to have…


False Dichotomy Makes For A Confusing Myth About Leaders

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If you’ve look at any literature on leadership, you’ll certainly have come across the statement — Leaders are made. You have almost certainly come across the term “ born leader” as used in common speech. Both are equally wrong and misleading in ways that have practical implications, particularly for leadership development.

In Western society we have a tendency to want to dichotomize things. Something is one thing, or the opposite. Leaders are born. Leaders are made. Like the nature-nurture controversies in Psychology, though, the truth lies somewhere between the two poles.

First, it is certainly true that some personality traits…


Informal leaders can help take the load from formal leaders but it often doesn’t “happen” on its own.

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Managers, supervisors, executives or any others with formal power and title within an organization can reap huge benefits from cultivating and developing existing in their work units. Or, informal leaders can work against the formal leaders in the organization.

When informal leaders are working towards achieving the same vision and goals as the formal leaders (and the organization itself), they can take a tremendous burden from the backs of managers and formal leaders. Some of the leadership functions, and many management functions can actually be carried out informally by those without actual authority. …

Robert Bacal

Author, Trainer, customer service, management, performance appraisal,leadership,difficult customers

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