Kevin touched on many topics but there were 3 that I will talk about briefly from personal experience...
(1) How do you know when to fire an employee?
(2) Why is Customer Service so important?
(3) Why paying it forward is always good?
(1) I owned my own Dual-Language School with my Co-Partner about 3 years ago before I became a Realtor. I always knew that there would come a time when I would have to fire an employee at least once; when you have your own business, unfortunately that comes with the job. This incident came about because the employee was saying things to put my partner and I up against one another. When ever my partner and I were at lunch separately, they would come into our office and say hurtful things, claiming that my partner and I said to the employee about one another in private. After taking a record of it each time that it happened and my partner keeping a record as well, we decided to let this employee go. We sent this employee off with a Recommendation Letter to work somewhere else of their choosing, and paid them up til their last day of work with us. At first it was a hard decision because we were worried about how the parents were going to receive this news and if they would take their children out of our school because of it. This employee was excellent at their job, hard working, always lending an extra hand when needed to us or the school, excellent in teaching the children, always had excellent communication with the parents, always had creative ideas and taught those ideas in the classroom, had positive energy toward parents and children with smile, and the parents and children loved this employee. As a result, as a business owner you hoped these types of incidents do not happen. My partner and I had agreed in the beginning when we had opened our business, we had to remain a team; always backing one another up whether we agree or disagree. In this industry, parents can sometimes try to say things to possibly separate Owners/Directors, or an employee will try to do the same, as well.
(2) When being a Leader, a Manager, a President, a CEO, or someone in power, Customer Service should always be at the top of your list. Yes, we all want to make money, but it is really about giving to your customers and building wonderful business relationships to last a life time. I believe giving quality service to my clients, going above and beyond for them, trying my best to put myself in their shoes and what would I do if I were them. I look at the whole picture, the clients, their environment at the time and situation, how can I make them happy, hearing all their concerns and answering their questions to the best of my knowledge. The questions that I do not know, I let them know that I will find out for them and get back to them in less than 24 hours. Yes, there is times where we agree and disagree but at the end of the day, I always find the best possible solution that will benefit everyone. Honesty and respect go a long way and always are at the top of my list. I am always honest whether it is positive news or negative news. I am always positive and optimistic regardless of the situation. I always make sure that my clients have my direct contact so they can reach me at any time, morning, day, or night. Also, I never take anything too personal or to heart from my clients. Sometimes I do not know what is happening to my clients on a personal level; sometimes they do not want share everything for me to better assist them and that is okay, they have that right. I give them time to figure it out and work as a team with them. At the end of the day, there is always a solution to help everyone.
(3) I am always giving back; this has always been my nature and my personality of who I am. Whether it be to a school for such a wonderful job they do for the children, by sponsoring teacher and staff lunches. I rescue animals when ever the situation crosses my path; give them medical care and try to get them adopted out to a good family. I pay for someone's lunch or coffee that I do not know. I give to charity, give to a church, and I donate several items to Salvation Army 3 to 4 times a year. I always lend a hand to anyone, friends, and family where I can when needed. It could be to give advice to someone or being a good listener to them for them to vent any issues they may have. I have given honeymoon trip packages to friends and family. I have taken in 3 different exchange students over the last 8 years for them to study English and have the full culture experience of living in the US for 1 year. I give back to my clients, whether it be through a small gift at the end thanking them for using me as their Realtor; my free time to them and making the process of selling, buying a home or commercial Real Estate a wonderful, positive experience.
I hope my experience was helpful to everyone. Please subscribe, like, or share to anyone!!! :-)