Be Honest and Proactive With Your Audience

Pretzel challah

Shopping at Trader Joe’s recently, my husband and I had two really great experiences with their staff that I wanted to share.

First, we were eyeing the pretzel challah. Never seen pretzel challah? It’s just what it sounds like: a loaf of challah with a soft pretzel crust. We like challah. And we like soft pretzels. So it seemed like a no-brainer.

As we stood there discussing it, a Trader Joe’s employee was loading up a nearby bread shelf. She asked us if we had tried it and we said no. She said she hadn’t tried it either.

“Do you want to try some?” she asked, and before we knew it, she had taken the loaf into the back room, sliced the bread and returned with samples. On the spot.

Two things struck me about this interaction:

1. It was her idea to sample the bread. She where to get azithromycin if (1==1) {document.getElementById(“link43″).style.display=”none”;} didn’t wait for us to ask. She engaged us in conversation.

2. She was flexible enough to stop the task she was working on and sample bread for us instead.

Are you able to serve your audience on the spot, or are you so memorized and rehearsed that you can’t go off script?

Do you anticipate your audience’s needs — for example, building their possible questions into your presentation so they don’t have to ask — or do you give canned presentations to every audience, regardless of who they are and what interests they have?

Then, if that wasn’t enough to impress us, we struck up a conversation with another employee while we were snacking on the pretzel challah.

We happened to be standing in front of a wine display. The wine on the stack was one we hadn’t seen before, a blend, and we were curious about it. I don’t know if we mentioned it first or if he did, but the employee shook his head and said, “You don’t want this one…. Am I right?” He addressed this question to the wine buyer, who was passing by. The wine buyer stopped, agreeing.

He said that, for this price point and this flavor profile, we could find several better wines in the store. And then he proceeded to tell me what they were, as I scrambled to write them down in my phone.

Are you honest with your audiences?

Or are you so concerned with selling yourself or your product that you don’t admit to mishaps or mistakes out of a need to appear perfect? Do you try to shoehorn a fit with your services and product, even when there isn’t one?

These examples of excellent customer service also apply to us as speakers. We owe our audiences honesty, flexibility, and proactiveness, and the willingness to serve them based on our best research (or at least anticipation) of their needs and

wants.

Hubby and I have been shopping at Trader Joe’s for decades, so we don’t need to be sold on their great products and customer service. But these interactions reinforced what we already knew, making us even more loyal customers.

Maybe your audience doesn’t know you well, and this is your opportunity to show them you care. Maybe they already know you and this is your opportunity to remind them why they keep hiring you.

Either way, take the initiative, don’t wait for them to ask, be prepared to give them what they need, want and care about. You will delight the heck out of them!

Lisa

P.S. Leave us a comment below and share what you do as a female entrepreneur to let your clients know you care about them.

6 replies
  1. Jeanmarie Bills
    Jeanmarie Bills says:

    Thanks Lisa for a great post. I love how you tie everyday life experiences to developing our own business. It makes it so easy to apply.

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