If I were to visit your place of business right now, never having been there before, what would I see?
Let’s imagine a purely physical-plant encounter, where I don’t interact with you or anyone else on your staff at first; is your place of business going to welcome me warmly, intrigue me, and succeed in making me eager to do business with you?
Or will I wonder if you really want me there at all?
I was on O‘ahu this past week, preaching Aloha and Ho‘okipa as I am likely to do, and I had a friend tell me about a new sign he saw up in a local eating establishment. He was very empathetic to the business owner, gracious in guessing about all the customers who may have forced the owner’s hand with taking such a drastic measure.
Sorry, but I still didn’t buy it. I was so incredulous that such a sign would be posted, I had to visit the restaurant and see it for myself:
This is wrong on so many levels.
I can guess why this was done, however I am appalled that this is the solution. Surely we are better than this.
Well, we can say mahalo to this business owner for giving us a great coaching opportunity” (you posted this on both entrance walls, and signed it, so I assume you are okay with me helping you publish it):
- Share this picture with your staff and talk about it: Tear it apart line by line. What are the better solutions that could replace this rude and lazy tactic?
- Then discuss the first and last impressions that you are giving at your place of business: What are they like? How can you improve them?
And a bit of Alaka‘i self-reflection: If you are a manager, are you expected to enforce rules like this? If so, why are you still working there?
Those Critical First and Last Impressions