Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

 September 30, 2018

Jeff MowattBy Jeff Mowatt

Like you, there are times in my work when emails and texts aren’t efficient and I actually need to phone someone and have a real conversation. In my case, it’s when I’m preparing for a training session or to speak at a conference that requires interviewing senior managers and key employees. I’ve made literally thousands of calls over the years, and since I pay particular attention to customer communication I’ve created a list of Top 10 Telephone Turnoffs. See if you can relate to them, which I’ve rated from least annoying to worst. More importantly, read the accompanying tips to ensure you and your team members aren’t committing the same offences.

10. “Good afternoon, thank you for calling ABC company, Ralf speaking. How can I help you?” Long greetings waste the caller’s time. Instead, just open with, “Thank you for calling ABC company, this is Ralf.” It’s concise and finishes with the employee’s name rather than the word speaking. People remember the word spoken last and the most important word is your name. While you’re at it, avoid asking, “How can I help you?” The caller will tell you this, and adding that statement essentially steps all over your name by following it with more words that make it even less memorable.

9. “Hello.” While, turnoff #10 was too long, this greeting doesn’t offer enough information. If a call is transferred to you from a switchboard, just say, “Good morning (or afternoon), this is Jeff.” In this case, by saying good morning you let the caller know they’ve reached you live; not your voice mail.

8. “How are you?” Asking this question to someone you’ve never met has two unintended consequences: 1) sounds insincere 2) wastes the person’s time. Not a great start, especially when the most important thing you’re trying to establish is trust. Instead of asking, “How are you?” simply introduce yourself, then explain, “We’ve never met. The reason I’m calling is…

7. “Please hold.” Putting a caller on hold without asking permission is rude. Instead, ask permission and thank them: “May I put you on hold for a moment? Thank you.”

6. “I’m either on the phone or away from my desk…” Callers understand that they’ve reached your voice mail. They don’t need an explanation about why. If you’re out of the office for several days mention that. Otherwise, just state, “You’ve reached the voice mail of Jeff Mowatt. Please leave a message. ‘Nuff said. (Please don’t tell me to have a great day. Just stop talking so I can leave a message.)

5. “Your call is important to us.” This is the default recorded message you often hear when reaching a call centre. Again, the most important thing to establish with customers is trust. It doesn’t help when the record message tells a lie. If our call was really that important to the organization, they’d have a live person taking our call. This statement insults our intelligence. Instead, opt for, “Your call will be answered in approximately x minutes. Thank you for your patience.”

4. “You need to call Department X.” (When customers have a complaint). The last thing customers want when expressing a concern is the runaround. If a customer is unhappy, rather than foisting them on another department, ask permission to put the caller on hold. Then you call the department to brief them about the customer’s concern and their state of mind. That leads us to turnoff #3…

3. ABC department? (When picking up a transferred call after you’ve been briefed about their complaint). Forcing unhappy customers to repeat themselves simply elevates their frustration. Instead, answer the call by introducing yourself with your first and last name, explaining that your colleague briefed you, and paraphrasing your understanding of the situation. Then, rather than starting back at square one, the customer can simply correct or confirm the details.

2. Peeking at your smart phone screen while in face-to-face conversation. When you check your phone in front of others you demonstrate a focus on yourself that undermines trust.

1. Talking on a cell phone around others. No one wants to hear a half of a phone conversation from a bystander. Anywhere. Anytime. We’d rather listen to jets taking off than be subjected to someone’s stream of consciousness. If you must make a phone call while others are within earshot, keep it short or go elsewhere to make the call.Bottom Line… the good news about these telephone turnoffs is they are easy to avoid. As I teach in my seminars, ask yourself if everything you say and do enhances or diminishes trust. When you demonstrate your respect for your customers’ time and intelligence, chances are you will be rewarded — literally — with their loyalty.

This article is based on the bestselling book, Influence with Ease by Hall of Fame motivational speaker Jeff Mowatt. To obtain your own copy of his book or to inquire about engaging Jeff for your team, visit www.jeffmowatt.com. Watch for more articles from Jeff in future issues.

 

SchneiderBy Patrick Donovan

The lack of staff or “lights out” nature of many local IT and mobile edge computing (MEC) sites makes operations and maintenance a challenge. This struggle worsens as the number of sites increase. How do you maintain IT resiliency in a cost-effective way under these conditions? It is not practical to staff each location with trained personnel. The answer lies, in large part, on data centre infrastructure management (DCIM) software. In this paper we describe essential DCIM functions for small, unmanned edge computing sites and attributes of next-generation DCIM solutions best optimized for that type of environment. 

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Rick McCartenBy Rick McCarten

Two articles on branding recently caught my attention.

The first was on electric vehicles. Ford Motor Company felt that, as all cars move to electric, the number of moving parts and the complexity of production will simplify, which will result in a reduction in brand importance from 30% to 10%. Your decision to purchase will only be influenced by the brand by 1/10. Nine-tenths of your decision will be based on other factors.


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Smart BuildingsIn an era of energy and digital transformation, the economics of building ownership are changing. According to a new white paper from the global Energy practice of Navigant, a Guidehouse company, energy, technology and service providers must innovate in the buildings sector or risk major disruption to their businesses.

Worldwide, an estimated 24 billion square feet of new commercial buildings is constructed annually — the equivalent of about 9,000 new Empire State Buildings. The new Navigant white paper concludes that while building owners have been deploying intelligent buildings solutions that rely on data for automation and control for decades...

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Changing Scene

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GreenleeEmerson announced the addition of a handheld puller to its Greenlee pulling lineup – the new G1 Versi-Tugger. The versatile and portable G1 is designed for pulls normally done by hand and can pull up to 68-percent faster when compared to manual pulling.

“We engineered and built G1 based on honest feedback from professionals,” said Adele Hendrix, product manager for Greenlee, Emerson. “We learned being fast wasn’t only about pull speed. From setup and pulling to unspooling the line after – the entire process should be quicker than pulling by hand. Our design delivers that speed.”

 

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Ilsco and Adanac SalesILSCO Canada has announced the appointment of Adanac Sales as agency of representation for the ILSCO brand in the province of British Columbia.

This partnership exemplifies ILSCO’s dedication to collaborate with companies that share ILSCO’s commitment to providing excellent products and service to the electrical industry in British Columbia.

 

 

 

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Peers & Profiles

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His work as a contractor would eventually lead him to his current position. Working with suppliers as an electrician, Alex was presented with an opportunity to work for CEBEO, one of Sonepar’s operating companies.

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Looking Back

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