Front Line Marketing
Welcome to Sparks Fly!
The monthly service tip sheet from Front Line Marketing.
Here we offer you tips to strengthen engagement between employees, clients and vendors, believing that the key to differentiation and success is stronger connections.
Please visit our web site and download the Service Curve Assessment. Through a short, self graded survey, you will be able to measure your companies service against your competition. Make more informed decisions on what to do next after reading what it takes to move up the service curve.
Better engagement involves three steps; Measurement, Intervention and Reward. Begin with measurement using the Q12 from Gallup. Developed after an extensive interview process, we are now able to measure our employees and departments engagement level with only 12 questions. Download them free at Front Line
These articles can be a bit long and I realize that is not the norm these days. Maybe print this newsletter out or put it in your tickler file to refer to over the next few weeks.
To your success,
"Your spark can make a connection and that can change everything." 
Give Yourself The Breath Of Life 
Often when I notice that friends or family are in stress or having heightened anxiety I will suggest one word of advice, "Breathe".
During seminars we will often invite attendees to participate in a breathing technique called, "square breathing". In each case the purpose is to relax and focus. And it works.
However, what I just recently realized is that when you are focusing on breathing, that is all you can be focused on.
Try it.
You can't concentrate on breathing and still think about the other 10 things that you have going on. I have a feeling that those that practice yoga are probably reacting with knowing smiles. But my awakening is in the fact that focused breathing centers us in the moment and in so doing eliminates future fears and past worries. And it is in that, that its great value lies.
As you return to work and embrace the great adventure of 2009 why not give yourself one more gift, the breath of life.
For those of you interested, square breathing goes like this; as you let your breath out, count to 4, at the bottom before breathing in, count to 4, as you breathe in, count to 4, then hold it for 4 and repeat. It can be a bit uncomfortable at first, but hang with it. You'll find your rhythm. Oh yea, do it with eyes closed.
Midwest Airlines Case Studymidwest airlines
Recently, I was flying Midwest Airlines. Not an airline that I use often or have much knowledge about. And weather in the midwest being what it is, I missed my return flight. When I showed up the next day to plead my case, grovel, etc I was told that flights to my home destination were cancelled. What resulted was my relationship with Diane, my customer service representative. She was engaged, witty and efficient, found me a flight and offered 'forgiveness' for my missed flight, without penance.
What followed was an email exchange from me to MA offering Kudos to Diane and Midwest Airlines reply to me. That's right, they contacted me to thank me for taking the time to recognize great service.
Although space (and respect for your time) prohibits me from including the two emails. I will share that they mentioned Diane (the CSR) by name, three different times. So you've got the gist of the exchange. Now ask and answer these two questions. When was the last time you recognized someone for great service? (FYI - I'm not great at it, but it has become a focus that I am cultivating to a habit.) And two, do you and your company, have a policy of thanking the positives?
I'm aware of all the time constraints but put all your objections aside for a minute. I've got to say, I like the idea of  closing the service loop by not just focusing on the negative comments, but recognizing those that take the time to thank us.
Here was my reaction. First, I realized that they got my message. I also know that they recognized the person I took the time to comment on. It also set me up with a belief that they care about the engagement of their people - and that means they care about me. Makes me think my service experience was not a fluke. And that in turn raises my trust level.
RESULT: I am more likely to seek them out in the future. And I've now told others about them.
In This Issue
Midwest Airlines, Best Care In The Air
Adored and Desired
Adored and Desired
Over the past few years I've had the great honor of reconnecting with a person from my past that I respect and like a great deal. During the holidays we were talking and he was sharing some thoughts on relationships with me. Over the course of our conversation he must have said three different times, "It is very simple, I just want two things, to be adored and desired." I of course laughed and so did he, but his comment has stuck with me.
Adored and Desired
He's not so unique is he? Whether personally or professionally, client or vendor, adored and desired pretty much fits the bill. 
But I also know this. You have to adore and desire before you become adored and desired. That's the way the universe works.
So my new years wish for all of us is this; adore and desire your clients, your employees, your vendors and your families. The result is we reap what we sow.
So, stick to it and hang on! Because you're about to become adored and desired!
Happy 2009!
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Bruce Cameron
Front Line Marketing

 "The best defense is no offence."