When I say don’t tell lies, what I mean is that you need to get to a state of transparency and honesty into your entire life.
Now, I’m not really talking about outside of work, because that’s not really my thing, but in business, in your marketing, in your relationships with your colleagues, with your employees, with your staff, with your team, your outsourcers, stop telling lies.
Now the reason I say that is because we are all guilty of it. Have you ever been on your way to an appointment and you are late because you left a bit late, but you get stuck in traffic?
Then you ring up your client and you say, “I am five minutes away” when you know you are ten minutes away.
You could be on your way home to your husband or to your wife or your partner and they ring you and say “Where are you?” “Oh, I’m nearly home. I’ve just been stuck in traffic.”
Now, you know you weren’t stuck in traffic, you were doing something at work. We all tell little white lies, but then they become easy.
Now today, the ones I am talking about are the ones when you’re talking to customers. For example, you’re supposed to send out a package yet it hasn’t arrived for the customer.
They phone you asking about it. You know you need to speak to them, so you get on the line and you say, “Really? Well, that’s unusual, but I know it went out, let me go and check that and I’ll get back to you.”
You know it didn’t get sent because you didn’t have it in stock, and you’re hoping you’re going to get in today and it’s going to be sent out.
The package never arrives so now, you are in a pickle, so later you phone them and say, “I have absolutely no idea what happened, but I can guarantee we will get you another one and you will have it tomorrow when the first one arrives.”
Why not say, instead say, “I am so sorry, in fact we should have called you, but it turned out it wasn’t actually in stock. However, it is arriving today and we’re going to get it out, and you will have it tomorrow, I am so sorry.”
That is honesty and transparency at its best. So — if you were the customer, what do you think they are thinking?
Do you think they are thinking, “Are they telling the truth? I bet you they are making that up”? Why not just be honest?
What is the worst that can happen? I’m going to say that a lot, by the way. What’s the worst that can happen? You’re telling the truth.
If you start to be honest and transparent with everything, you will find it filters through to your whole life and it just gives you a better mindset, a better ethic, you can feel better about yourself, about your business,and your customers will like you.
Honesty shows through. People can tell when people are not telling the truth. If you start to forget how often you do it, they don’t.
They notice, because it happens a lot, you can’t remember the last time that customer ordered and you said the same thing. See what I mean?
So, how about with staff? How about being honest with them? So for instance, if you were planning a pay raise this year but now it’s not going to happen.
You’re hoping that they won’t notice and they won’t bring it up, so you don’t say anything either.
And by the way, I do actually include being economical with the truth, just not saying it is the same as lying, you’re just hoping people forget or don’t mention it.
But, they don’t forget. Those staff members — they harbor grudges and it all adds up. They hold it all in for a while, and then eventually they explode and then everything seems so petty.
You look back, and realize that this could have been avoided. So, try to be truthful.
The other day I bought a chair in Staples, an office chair and it had a price on it. It was 49.99 and it said previous price, £189, but above that, that was in the small print, £189 crossed out and price 49.99.
Above it, it said, “Introductory offer.” To me, I was like — “Huh? Introductory offer?”
Apparently, it’s a new product. How could it ever have been £189 then? Why are they saying that? Because I looked at that and I think they are lying to me.
Now I know they are lying to me. Why don’t you just sell it for £49? It was a great price, why don’t they just put “Incredible price”?
That would have caught my attention, I would have looked at it, seen it and probably bought it right away.
But I now think, when I look around the rest of Staples, I think, “You’re not really making a discount, that’s not the real price, it’s not really a discount, you’re just making it up, you’re lying to me.”
This shows everywhere, but with your customers, be honest.
If you think you are expensive on something, say, “This won’t be the cheapest price, however…” Explain why it’s that price. People aren’t stupid, so don’t think they are.
Honestly, this is a great policy to have and not enough businesses have it. Be honest with your prices, you will stand out above your other competitors, the ones that hide the prices.
The customer is going to find out eventually, so be fully transparent. If it’s a product that you don’t sell many of, tell them “We don’t sell many of these, but we can get these in quickly.”
Don’t say, “We have stocks of everything.” Be honest.
At Fire Protection Online, one of my other businesses, if someone orders something and we haven’t got it because we are not Amazon, then we let them know that.
We do have a lot of stuff, but if people buy an average two or three of something and then someone buys fifty, the chances are we won’t have them.
We ring them straight back, because they have paid us, we’ll ring them straight back and say, “We don’t have the fifty in, we can get them to you tomorrow, but they will come from our supplier’s warehouse. Is that okay?”
We actually do that so that the person is aware of what’s happening. It works, we get good ratings and people actually write in and say “Fantasic! Got a call.”
We get five star ratings from people,”Got a call, I ordered it, it said it was in stock online, it turned out it wasn’t in stock, bit of a shame, but they called me straight away, told me everything, they fessed up, told me everything and they did everything they could do to get it to me and it is a great product.”
They still give us five out of five. Honesty, transparency, it will work.
Tuesday Toolbox Tip
Today is Tuesday which means it is time for a toobox tip. Today I am going to tell you about an online service, it’s called scoop.it.
If you go there, it’s a content curation tool. It’s a way of publishing a sort of online magazine.
So what you do is you can get through the tool which, by the way is free. There are paid versions but the free one is good enough.
You can create a magazine and you can give it a name and then you can use what are called RSS feeds to bring information in from other blogs, other news sites and things.
You can bring up articles and you can search on your key words,. You can also share them in your Scoop It channel, then you can send that link to people, to your customers with a lot of great information.
It’s a way of curating content and putting it all together in a very neat way. It looks like a magazine, and it is fantastic.
You can share it with people, and those people will share, and people will follow you. It’s another way of building an audience.
People use Scoop.it, it’s fantastic. It makes you look good. Go and have a look.
By the way, if you do want to freshen up your online presence, this episode is sponsored by website101.co. It is something you need to go and look at, www.website101.co.
I am saying no more, go have a look, it won’t bite, it’s good for you.
I’ll see you tomorrow.
What little lies do you need to stop telling to your customers?