Tuesday, Jun 5th, 2012
700 horses being ridden by youth, adults, beginners, experienced, rusty and a few unruly riders took off from the tiny town of St. Paul Oregon to kick off the rodeo season with my mare and I among them.
It’s not a difficult ride. Mostly flat and moves along and around fields and beside a river. The purpose is to bring out the community, connect with other horse lovers and for many it’s the first ride of the year. The weather was mild and though clouds threatened, no rain fell.
My mare, spirited and pretty and smart did fine until we turned onto the long road, and we could see the hundreds of horses stretched out ahead of us, turned around the big field over half a mile away and turned again as far as you could see.
It was an awesome sight – all those horses and riders, in all their colors and gear. And exciting sight, to be a part of it and for my mare it was more than she could comprehend.
When she saw all those horses stretched out ahead of her something inside of her snapped. It was as if she suddenly felt behind, isolated and off. She picked up her pace – and the fact I intended a nice leisurely walk became a hindrance to her new goal of racing to the front of this herd where she could see, be and feel comfortable.
My mare didn’t like her placement and she decided she was going to do something about it. The fact her rider had different ideas became her focus – “I will get to the front!” she seemed to shout with every prance, crow hop, neck bow and side step she presented.
“No you won’t” was my unspoken communication and I’m going to sit here and hold you regardless of your desire. Because I am in charge – this is my choice.
They say that a spirited horse helps make the rider better and so I am grateful for this mare.
Do you have any customers like this?
People so anxious to get the latest thing, the food they just read about or to be in first in line?
Tiring aren’t they?
Just like my mare that pranced her way over my patience, it takes a steady hand and strong resolve to do what is right.
Next time you have the pushy customer, the demanding pet owner, the run you over person, take a lesson from my spirited mare.
• Collect yourself and hold your stance.
• Be easy with your hands and gentle with your language.
• Know you are strong enough and skilled enough to handle this situation.
• Praise when you get the response you want.
• Remember that this little hissy fit will end and you’ll be able to laugh about it.
Customers aren’t really that different than our pets – so use what you know and most importantly – love them regardless – that’s why you got into this business after all.
Now – Go Do Your Business!
Monday, Jun 4th, 2012
However this doesn’t stop them from pressing their bodies and noses into the side of the bed, pawing at the bed and whining for a lift!
Instead I’ve been doing the foot dangle. When I put my leg over the side bent at the knee – it happens to be the exact right height for rubbing a yellow Labrador back, getting a toe lick from a Papillon and getting my foot zealously assaulted by an overly needy Border collie.
This foot dangle has become the way I pacify my canines when they want me out of bed or they want in bed. It works well.
They get some attention though not exactly what they want, I give something though not as much as asked for. It’s a negotiation that works for us.
What kind of foot dangles can you do in your pet business that would help you to satisfy more customers without giving more than you want or having them all in bed with you?
Foot dangles can include –
• A certain time you return calls – promise it on your voice mail and make it happen for it to work.
• Certain days you address certain requests – you will work with them on that on Tuesday – so schedule with them now and then they know they have your time.
• Predetermined giving amounts – so you participate yet within your comfort zone, “This is the amount we’ve allotted for these events this year/month/week.”
My dogs will ask and ask and ask for love and attention (Another wonderful reason I adore having pets!) however when I give within my comfort level – we all win.
Figure out your own business foot dangles and you’ll find your customers are happier and so are you.
That’s a good way to Do Your Business!
Host of: Do Your Business
Thursday, May 24th, 2012
There’s an adage from the entertainment industry my video guy reminded me of, “Never work with animals, kids or water.” BECAUSE THEY’RE UNPERDICTABLE!
However it’s that unpredictability that makes them so precious and important in our lives and also gives us the greatest lessons to use with our customers.
Business Building questions:
As you go about your day – are you consistent?
A better question is, how can you be more consistent? It’s something that will help grow your business.
When challenges occur – do you shake it off or does it fester?
And a better question is, how can you shake off anything that happens so that the negative feelings leave before the next customer arrives?
When you are faced with unpredictable situations do you embrace them or get flustered by them?
A better question is, how can you embrace unpredictably as happily as a dog?
There are two lessons in here today:
First: Are we asking the best questions? And the answer is – usually we can ask better ones.
Second: What attitude can we cultivate to help our pet business be the place people depend on for consistent, happy, handle anything well service?
Remember – you control your thinking and it all starts there.
Now – Go Do Your Business!
Host of: Do Your Business!