Category Archives: Bits & Pieces

Whatever your profession, you also need to be a professional communicator. ETC is pleased to share these essential Bits & Pieces to help you polish those skills.

Teaching Customer Service Skills

A reporter recently asked my thoughts on teaching customer service skills to employees with no previous experience. Thought you’d be interested in my comments.

Let’s assume the new Customer Service employees have participated in an effective and comprehensive orientation program about the industry, company and community. Then, they transitioned into an orientation about the Customer Service department, its mission, role, etc. Part of that orientation process should include: Read More »

Small Business Success

‘Growing Your Business!’, by Marc LeBlanc, Beaver’s Pond Press, Edina MN, 1999.

Thought it was time to re-read LeBlanc’s excellent book while on vacation. It’s the smallest, shortest and one of the best resources for small businesses ever. Great idea!

I Don’t Get it – Work/Life Balance

My rant this month is about a cliché we all hear and many of us use – ‘Work/Life Balance’. I understand the concept but I Don’t Get … the words used. So please humor this incurable wordsmith a little. Read More »

Avoid these Customer Service Mistakes

Here’s a summary of my comments from a wide-ranging conversation with a blogger about mistakes employees make that prevent customer engagement and make them unhappy. Read More »

A Very Helpful Book

Last month, I mentioned a reporter included me in her ‘Business Unplugged’ blog entry on business books. Thought you’d enjoy my comments. Read More »

Overcoming Stage Fright?

How can people overcome stage fright or Presentation Anxiety (PA), the clinical term? Short answer – they can’t – it’s a perfectly normal human response to fear or stress.  But what I help my executive coaching clients accomplish is managing their PA through Minimizing and Masking techniques. Read More »

The Greeks Got Communication

Everything I know about communication I learned from the classic Greeks.

‘We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.’ Epictetus (AD 55 – 135), philosopher and teacher.

‘Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.‘  Plato (428 – 348 BC) philosopher, writer and teacher.

‘By words the mind is winged.’ Aristophanes, (450 – 388 BC), playwright.

The Ancients Valued Silence

Keep silent for the most part, speak only when you must, and then briefly.  Epictetus (AD 55 – 135), Greek philosopher and teacher

He is nearest to the gods who knows how to be silent.  Cato the Elder (234 BC – 149 BC), Roman senator and historian

Often silence is the wisest thing for a man to heed. Pindar, (522 BC – 443BC), Greek lyric poet

Our ancestors valued silence. Shouldn’t we?

Dealing with Angry Customers

Of utmost importance is having a well-defined policy in place that senior management participated in creating and signed off on and that everyone who touches customers understands, embraces and follows consistently. Periodic re-training or review can be helpful. Components of that policy should include: Read More »

Ain’t Nothing’ Soft About It

Allow me another ‘I Don’t Get It’ rant. This time …  I Don’t Get ‘Soft Skills’. Read More »

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