Customer Service Defines Brands

Are you sabotaging your identity and reputation?

Abhorring! This is the one word that describes United Airlines’ treatment of a paying customer. Shocking is the only way to describe video of a traveler being dragged off a flight. His crime? He has refused to give up his seat on an overbooked flight.

Customer Service

As horrid as this was, it brought back a pleasant memory from a podcast on Creating World Class Service. Horst Schulze, Chairman & CEO of Capella Hotel Group, talks of what it takes to empower teams. In his previous stint as CEO of the Ritz-Carlton, Mr. Schulze notes that every employee could spend up to $2,000 to fix anything in the hotel that would jeopardize customer experience and loyalty.

Customers want people to be nice to them and provide caring service. This is the strongest, most important expectation driving customer satisfaction,” says Horst Schulze.

In essence, keeping a valuable customer is more important than making profit in the short-term. This is a business that not only embraces customer service.

Back to United Airlines.

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How Neuroscience Improves Team Engagement

Say less, Ask more and Change the way you lead

As we tap into our twenty-first century laptops, one click on Google Earth and you can visit any country you want. A few intrepid people have even visited all countries. But there are still new frontiers of knowledge to be explored, and one of the most exciting is neuroscience, the study of the brain.

Using creative experiments and sophisticated technology… we are starting to see that the art of leadership has its basis in science. We can now begin to see what really works and what doesn’t work in our attempts to engage with those we manage and influence.

This brings an important to make a connection between your coaching habit and your head by looking at the neuroscience of engagement.

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Want To Be Heard? Listening Is A Must!

Why listening is the key to building teams that last

The pigs are running the farm. So begins the story of Farmer Able. Everyone on his farm – people and animals alike – are downright downtrodden by him.

He’s overbearing and compulsively obsessed with profits and productivity. He’s a typical top-down, power-based manager, forever tallying production numbers in his well-worn ledgers. But the more he pushes the hoofs and horns and humans, the more they dig in their heels.

That is until one day when he hears a mysterious wind that whispers: “It’s not all about me.” Can he turn things around and begin attending to the needs of those on his farm, thus improving their attitudes and productivity?

The following is an excerpt from chapter 23 of Farmer Able…

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Building A Team That Matters – Part 1

10 Critical Principles For Successful Teams

Team-building is a disruptive process for everyone involved. However, this does not mean that it should be a painful experience.

Building A Team That Matters - Part 1

Over the last few months, I have agonized over why I can’t seem to get up to speed with growing my business. Despite some good business prospects, growth feels stifled. The more I think about it, I realize that it is time to build a team. To grow, something has to shift.

I read this from a friend’s story: “Two guys were walking from the farm and one of them fell into a deep pit. His friend tried to help him to come out but he failed. ‘Let me quickly go and look for a rope,’ the friend said. As he was coming back, he saw his friend already out of the pit and staring into the pit. He asked him how he managed to come out. ‘A snake fell into the pit!’ he replied.”

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The Pursuit of Purpose

Here are your first 3 key components

There they were… 220 expectant eyes. Like laser beams, they locked on us. “Who I’m I?” This was the topic my wife and I were to speak on. And we had less than two hours.

The Pursuit of Purpose

It was a meeting with young adults. Their anticipation was palpable. They all seemed keen to unveil their identity. After the talk, some held us back for one-on-one conversation with us. Yet, others sent us detailed email messages about their struggle with identity. All this transported me back to a treasured memory…

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Unsettled – My Manifesto

Get busy living or get busy dying

Frustrated and unmotivated, I knew there was something greater my life had to offer.

Unsettled - My Manifesto

But I felt stuck, like trying to walk in a sea of thick mud. My life was like a square peg being hammered into round hole. I wanted to thrive but this animal-in-a-cage mentality held in a vice-grip. I ran fast, but to nowhere.

These three thoughts plagued my mind in the dead of the night. Waking up in a cold sweat, they resounded above the chirping crickets and barking dogs:

  • I need a break!
  • I desire joy.
  • I can’t merely exist.

Shackled between my ears

I had heard this many times, “When life gives you a lemon, make lemonade!” Well, I got fed up with the lemonade business. I felt an urgency to see a break in the ominous grey clouds that hang over my head.

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4 Ways To Grow Your Social Brand

Getting real beyond just media

The phone rings but I don’t recognize the caller ID. But I pick the call anyway. It could be a prospective client. “Hello, I’m I speaking to Mr. Kimunya?” the caller asks in a not-very-confident voice.

4 Ways To Grow Your Social Brand

This garage is trying to sell me an oil change and an oil filter for my car. The last time I used their services is months ago. I had gone in for an electronic wheel alignment.

I service my car every 5,000 kilometers per the manufacturer’s specifications. New oil, oil filter, spark plugs, air filter, brake alignment, and general inspection! For this, my regular mechanic’s cost is just a bit over what this garage is proposing.

At the eight-minute mark, it finally dawns on the caller that I am not interested in the service. Not to mention that I had indicated this two minutes into the call. Then, he makes me aware of their free vehicle check-up. I am at the end of my patience by this time!

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How One Frontier Is Inspiring A Revolution

Bringing digital learning into any classroom

It all started with a seemingly innocuous statement, “It can’t be done, not in Africa.” That has inspired an innovation that will change access to online content and education across Africa and the world.

How One Frontier Is Inspiring A Revolution

I was at the launch of the visionary BRCK Education. It provides a holistic education technology solution that turns every classroom into a digital classroom.

And wait for the kicker… BRCK Education is designed and engineered in Nairobi Kenya for African infrastructure and internet needs.

BRCK Education evolved off a solution to provide rugged internet. BRCK is a mobile WiFi device that can go anywhere, do anything and is self-powered. All you have to do is insert a 3G data enabled SIM card in over 140 countries and broadcast a WiFi signal that you can share. Just like that!

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Top 3 Reasons Why Your Story Matters

Stories are powerful catalysts to life

It’s amazing how stories have the power to revise the course of our lives. But why do stories captivate our minds, leave our hearts pounding and enchant euphoric emotions?

Our perceptions and actions are influenced by the stories we live. And even more profound and longer-lasting are the stories we chose to share.

It is because narratives that happen at a personal level influence my potential to lead. They are powerful catalysts to my ability to be the change that I want to see in others. Stories act as a diving board to a deeper meaning of my life or my launch pad to the greatness I am meant to live.

One of my annual goals is to keep my fitness and health in check. I even purchased a mountain bike. However, I kept on telling myself that I need to ease into basic fitness first before I could begin my riding program. Six months later, I hadn’t made any progress! All because I made excuses of lack of time to justify my laziness. These excuses became the story of my life.

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The Undisciplined Pursuit Of More

When you forget your Why, your brand reputation suffers...

Consider this. You are a dominant market leader worth millions of dollars. There are opportunities to grow – and diversify – your market.

Don't try harder

However, there is one major blot on your otherwise dominance in the market. Customers desperately cry out to you to deliver your promise.

I have been a customer of a leading telecom for over a decade. The last 3 years have been the worst in terms of quality; from their products to customer service.

Don’t get me started on dropped and static-laden calls that are the order of the day. I have to go upstairs to get a decent signal. On countless occasions, I have had to tell my callers, “Please let me text you!”

With the call quality worse than a two-way radio, I could only hear half of what they were trying to communicate to me.

A quick common-sense check: it is time to move from the ice-age.

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