Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category

A Desire to Serve & It Shows!

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“A business absolutely devoted to service will have only one worry about profits. They will be embarrassingly large.”  Henry Ford

A Desire to Serve

I had breakfast with a friend of mine last week at a 50-year-old restaurant near downtown Fort Worth. That establishment may have the BEST example of a business that exudes a real “culture of service”I’ve ever seen. Was it a five-star place? NO. Look it up. The Ol’ South Pancake House. It’s what you would think, except bigger!

They had lots of seats and plenty of staff. When we arrived, they found us a table (booth) as quickly as possible. There was a slight wait, but the host was so pleasant. She seemed glad to see us. Neither of us had ever been to this location, but honestly, it felt like we were part of the family.

Once seated, we were greeted by the BEST server I’ve ever had. The only way I can describe Jennifer is that she was genuinely joyful to serve our breakfast. She smiled. She verbalized how happy she was we were there. She was interested in us having the best thing for breakfast based on dietary needs and desire.

Get Your Staff Enthusiastic

Listen, I don’t know how to tell you to help your staff get enthusiastic about the choices your guests make, but I can tell you as a guest, I LOVE it! The word that comes to mind about this server is authentic. She wasn’t faking it. She was happy and joyful. She had a genuine desire to serve, and it showed.

Maybe that’s the interview question we need to ask prospective or current employees. “How would you rate yourself on a scale of 1-10 when it comes to serving others, with 1 being I’m a help yourself kind of person and 10 representing a burning desire to serve others?” Then I would ask for an example of a time when they exhibited that kind of service.

A Spirit of Service

Back to Jennifer. She was friendly and tuned into the fact that my friend and I were going to visit a while. She never interrupted inappropriately yet tended to our every need. At one point during breakfast, my friend said, “Jennifer makes me want to ask her for one more thing just so she’ll come back to the table!” I’m telling you this woman was gifted with a “service spirit.” I know that may sound “woo-woo,” but it was just awesome!

We got to looking around, and you know what, the place was full of Jennifers. Every server was fully engaged when they were with a table. We even noticed a cranky couple at a table near us. Their server seemed to make it her mission to lighten up this meal for Mr. and Mrs. Cranky. It worked.

I think it may have had something to do with the fact that when she delivered breakfast, she did so with an enthusiastic, “Incoming!” and served them eggs and bacon in a royal sweeping style. You had to laugh. You have to get happy even when you are cranky! It’s bacon and eggs for crying out loud, and to me, it looks super important to the folks at the Ol’ South Pancake House for it to be a meaningful and fun part of each of their customer’s day. That’s a culture. They all believe what they are doing is important and they are consistently delivering service at a level I haven’t seen in a while! It was so honest and genuine.

Jennifer, if you see this…..I mean it, YOU are the best server I’ve ever had.

Wouldn’t it be cool for your guest service people to get tagged with that message?

TrainerTainment’s Top Reads

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TrainerTainment’s Top Book Reads

We are only two weeks into the new year, and I think I have purchased a dozen books to read in the next few months. Some of those books are the Jack Reacher series, but most of them are to help me become a better marketer, a better leader, and for just good old fashioned personal development.

One of our core values here at TrainerTainment is intentional learning. We have defined that as forward thinking; anticipating future needs and learning more; reading and asking questions; sharing learnings with others; taking ownership of our understanding and knowledge; being coachable. Just those alone require some reading, right?! So I asked the Trainertainment team about the best books they read in 2016.

I would love to hear from you if you have read any of these or if you have suggestions.  Share them with a comment below, on our Facebook page or shoot me an email. I’d love to add more to my list!

Books to Grow Your People and Business

Beth

Mike Weinberg

New Sales Simplified

Sales Management Simplified

Weinberg has a great way of saying all those things we believe about great selling. He gives great insight into the mistakes that get made for the sales rep and the sales Manger and places a great emphasis on how to correct those mistakes now.

I loved his no nonsense real world experience and the care in which he expresses his message.

Listen, I’m an old sales dog, and there were some new tricks that I didn’t hesitate to try right away. I’ve personally had the best three sales quarters in the history my company. I know the things I learned from Weinberg early in the year helped.

 

Phil

Jim Collins

Good to Great

What stood out to me about this book was how Collins showed through extensive research that, historically, many CEOs and leaders of small, medium and behemoth size companies, simply ignore truths and cling to their vision – to the point of becoming destructive to that very vision! Great stuff.

 

 

Rosie

Gino Wickman

Rocket Fuel

This book gave me a lot more understanding of working with a visionary since I tested at 97% integrator. It really showed me how different the two roles are and gave me a better understanding of how these two folks best work together to really “fuel” a company and get the results we want. This book will help any organization clearly identify and define roles to help them move forward.

 

Janice

Jonathan Whistman

The Sales Boss

Sales Boss sets the tone for Sales Managers who enter into a new company taking over an existing department. I love the journey Whistman takes you on showing you how to analyze how the current sales department is structured and performing from receptionist to upper management.

Sales Boss shows that those who are true superstars eventually will outshine those who aren’t. To find these superstars and help them shine, we need to be sure that we are looking at the talent in our departments by providing solid goals

 

JB

Patrick Lencioni

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

This is a very powerful book on that beast we call teams. Lencioni’s fable, as he calls it, is dead-on in describing the issues that face teams today. You get to see the path taken by the team in the book to finally be “rowing in the same direction.” Great addition to Gino Wickman’s Get a Grip and Traction books.

 

Amy

Gino Wickman

Get a Grip

Traction

Coming from an operations background…this book is a WOW eye opener! I wish I had known about the EOS Model when I was working in all my previous roles as Director of Ops and General Manager. This process brings together all the “cool things” that everyone else mentions in business books and puts it into an easy to follow process that, if done properly and consistently, brings results!

 

Brad

David Allen

Getting Things Done

I found this book extremely helpful to my daily productivity. It got straight to the point of showing what to do to be more organized and efficient with completing tasks.

Many self-development books spend a lot of time discussing theories and concepts and use real life stories or case studies to illustrate the points they’re trying to get across to the reader. While these are great sources of knowledge and inspiration, I often am still left with a hunger for more details of how to actually accomplish the intended results they showcase.

David Allen provides the practical mechanics of what you need to do to become more productive…on a minute by minute basis. He outlines a process that he calls the “5 Stages of Mastering Workflow” which consists of Collecting, Processing, Organizing, Reviewing, and Doing your work.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a desire to improve their ability to get things done!

 

Haley

Robert Greene

48 Laws of Power

This is an eye-opening book that gave an entirely new view on the actions of those around me. It’s packed with tactical moves, strategies, and examples of history that prove the effectiveness of “Power Games.”

It advises ways of overcoming irrational emotions, facing opponents, mastering networks, persuading those around you, identifying true motives of peers, and understanding the pieces that hold up and strengthen many societies (both current and in history).

My Inspiring Weekend

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This past weekend I spent a few days in Orlando with 2000 of my best friends. Okay, I’m not friends with them all but spending time with this amazing tribe of women was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had.

In my spare time, I sell Stella & Dot. This past weekend was my first time attending the yearly Hoopla conference. I had no idea what to expect, figuring it was just a fun weekend about women and, of course, amazing jewelry. Boy, was I wrong!

The weekend was full of learning on many different levels for me. I’ve been in sales and marketing for more than ten years and this weekend really made me realize how training can transform you as a person. No matter your age, gender, position/level, or years of experience, training motivates and inspires you.

When I started my journey in the FEC industry, I was super-motivated. I had never worked in a center before or created birthday parties, etc. It helped that I did my homework and read a lot about leadership and management, but I really craved attending conferences and meeting others in the industry who were going through the same struggles.

After I left the management side and started working with Beth, she took me to my first IAAPA. We  walked the floor that year and I remember all I could think was, “If I could have come here as a manager and attend classes or go to conferences to receive training, I could have done so much more.”

That’s how I felt when I left this weekend from Hoopla. I saw women on a journey to get what they wanted. All the stories were different yet we were all finding our extraordinary. I took classes that gave me the skills necessary to achieve the goals I set, relate with others who were finding their journey, and meet people who would encourage me to aspire to do even more.

So, consider sending your staff to events that further their leadership, sales, or whatever skills you want to grow. We host conferences throughout the year that do those very things. We would love for you and your staff to attend them. You’ll be amazed how it will inspire them!

Be Kind and Do What You Say

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If you didn’t already know, last week we were at Bowl Expo in Las Vegas. It’s always a great week for us. We spend months planning since we have our quarterly leadership team meeting. We bring our entire team out for a week of learning, the trade show, and team building.

I have to say the week started off a bit rough. I arrived on Sunday and thought I was 100% over the jetlag of traveling from Jakarta to Los Angeles to Houston and then back west to Vegas. I was in for a big surprise when I got to the Mandalay Bay.

I’m a Type A personality. You know, I plan every minute if I possibly can and I had a plan to land, run a few errands with Nancy, check in, work a few hours, eat dinner, work a couple of more hours and get to bed for our leadership team meeting the next day. Things didn’t quite go as planned.

The check in line was longer than the lines I had just seen at Disneyland the week before! Yup, I’m sure you are nodding your head if you checked in to the hotel on Sunday. It took over three hours. I was tired and exhausted and I knew since they only had five people checking everyone in, they were probably as frustrated as we were.

When it was finally my turn, I wanted to be sure I went in with the right mind frame as I have worked in the hospitality industry for the past ten years. So, I asked the girl how her day was going, tried to make small talk, and just asked if it was usually long lines like this. Instead of just saying, “No, not usually. It’s because we are a little short staffed,” she says to me in her frustrated don’t you get it voice, “We don’t have enough people. We are coming of winter so we have all these people to train and they worked 12 hours today and had to go home. They can’t work more.” Of course, I wanted to say, “Chill! I just asked if it was normal” but I understood.

As we were completing the check in process and I said, “I know this isn’t common but is there any chance you could do something since I had to wait so long?” She said she could comp the resort fees or give food credit. I knew I wanted wifi and that was probably the best value so I took it. To my disappointment, I received the bill and they hadn’t removed the resort fees so now I have to ask them to refund those.

I’m sure it was a tough day for her and she probably had no idea that it had been a tough few days for me as well between traveling and caring for my father who’s battling cancer. We have to remember that we need to do what we say we are going to do and we need to keep in mind we never know what someone is going through.

Next time you have someone at your center who comes off aggravated or downright mean, be kind. Take a step back and recognize you don’t know what they’re going through. When you tell them you are going to do something, whether it’s sending a person to fix a game, or fill tickets, or make a fresh pizza, do it. Don’t wait. Do it immediately and make things right. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

Surprise

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I’m bubbling over with service stories in my head since my vacation cruise in the middle of May. Leslie, my oldest daughter, and I traveled to St. Thomas, Tortola, and the Bahamas on Norwegian Cruise Line. The weather was perfect, the company was terrific, and the ship was spectacular. Can you tell I had a great time?

My birthday was on the 17th of May which was the 3rd day of the cruise. We set sail Saturday evening and docked on Tuesday after being at sea for two full days. Leslie had arranged a wonderful excursion for us. We took a champagne catamaran cruise and snorkeled at a beautiful reef in St. John. Although we used lots of sunscreen, we were overly kissed by the sun sailing back to the ship but had a great time.

THEN the big surprise happened. When we returned to our cabin that afternoon, we walked into a room wonderfully decorated with happy birthday decorations, a cupcake, a big cake, and handwritten notes from the housekeeping and hospitality departments. I was so surprised! There were streamers taped to the ceiling, helium balloons floating above the bed, a towel animal with a balloon in one hand and a cupcake in the other, and a happy birthday banner strung across the balcony door. I was wowed! I’m giddy thinking about it now.

It made me wonder what we could do for every birthday child who has an event at our family entertainment facilities! You know it wasn’t so much “what” they did… it was the surprise of it being done. I’m pretty excited about the possibilities. I’ve been racking my brain for two weeks wondering what we could do that would surprise and delight a child, their folks, and the kids at the party. Can you imagine the traction you could get for your birthday program? I totally believe that other children would have to have their party so that the “surprise” could happen for them as well.

I want to put this out there to you and hear what you think we could do to create that “giddy” moment for every birthday in your building. Leave a comment below or go to our Facebook page and share your idea. Together, I bet we could come up with some amazing ideas that would really make a memorable difference for the parties held at your center.

Hope you have a great week and, if you are a bowling based center, I can’t wait to see you at Bowl Expo.  Remember to claim your ticket to the Fab 5 party! It promises to be the hottest event in Vegas and I’d love to have you there… maybe there will even be a surprise or two for all of our attendees! Click here to register for your ticket. We only have a limited amount, so you’ll want to sign up soon.