Articles by Sheri Watts

Whom Do YOU Work For? – “YOU, Inc.”

Friday, February 25th, 2011

Sheri Watts Tells Her Own Story of one of her business endeavors, “You, Inc.”

The “Birth” of YOU, Inc.

While employed over 30 years at a major telecommunications corporation, one of my primary job responsibilities was to coach and develop the employees, both managementand non-management. One day, I was asked by a supervisor to speak to one of her direct reports, a young woman whose job was in jeopardy due to unsatisfactory performance results. Ironically, this employee had once been one of the top performers; however, in recent months, she had begun to exhibit behaviors that suggested a lack of interest in maintaining acceptable performance levels.

After being formally introduced to the young woman at her cubicle, we both entered a
nearby conference room for further interaction. After listening to all her
“reasons” for no longer wanting to meet performance requirements, I asked
her about several photos of a young boy I had seen earlier while at her cubicle.
She smiled and confirmed that it was her only child that she was raising without
involvement of the father. I then asked her if she really loved her son and wanted
him to have the very best that life had to offer for the rest of his life. With a
look of shock, surprise and in a slight tone of resentment, she stated, “Of course I
do…why would you ask me something like that?” “Then if you want the best for your
son, why aren’t YOU doing YOUR best? Who are you REALLY hurting….the company
that’s about to fire you or your son that will also be affected when his mother is
out of a job?” With tears in her eyes, she didn’t have to respond.

After this encounter with this young woman, along with the positive impact I later
learned that our discussion had on the significant improvement of her results, I
realized the power of famous motivational speaker and author, Zig Ziglar’s words,
“You can get anything in life that you want, if you just help enough other people
get what they want”. I further realized that companies that want “loyal and
delighted” customers need to “walk-the-talk” by ensuring that their customers aren’t
interacting with disgruntled employees. And so…”YOU, Inc.” was born!

What Does “YOU, Inc.” DO?
read full article »

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“Keeping it Real!”-Small Business Guide to Survival During Tough Economic Times

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

1. Maintain Customer First Focus! Customers are just as stressed as you are! They’re wondering how they’re going to pay their bills, keep their jobs, etc. If you want them to spend their hard-earned money with you, in spite of these worries, you need to make sure that all hired customer contact people treat your customers with the dignity, respect and care that customers deserve! The last thing stressed customers need is to come in contact with an employee that acts like they’re doing them a favor by waiting on them!

2. Maintain Your Existing Customers Base! During difficult economic times it can be
tempting to go after new customers, especially when your existing customer traffic
has slowed down. However, yielding to this temptation can be quite costly to your
business! According to TARP, which is a Washington, DC based organization that
studies customer trends, it costs 5 times as much to attract new customers as it
does to keep an existing one. Of course, you don’t want to turn down any business,
new customers included…just make sure you spend your money wisely in trying to
attract them! Make sure your existing customer base records are up-to-date. If you
don’t know who your existing customers are DO WHATEVER IS NECESSARY TO

3. Invest in Customer Service Training! Don’t assume that the people you’ve hired to
interact directly with your customers fully understand and give outstanding customer
service just because you’ve talked about it! Without training, most employees hired
in today’s environment learn to give to customers what they’ve received as
customers themselves….less than acceptable customer service! Unless you break
this cycle with a customer service training intervention, you will eventually lose whatever
business you had!

4. Hire the Smile, Train the Skill! This is the “Nordstrom Way”! Nordstrom Stores are
famous for their customer service. And we also know that Nordstrom IS NOT a
discount store! But, what you may not know is that Nordstrom doesn’t have a
“Customer Service” training program as a part of their orientation for newly hired
employees! So, how could they possibly have earned the reputation of having
OUTSTANDING customer service? Nordstrom’s philosophy is that they don’t train
employees to be kind, nice, empathetic, sympathetic, patient, etc. The Nordstrom
philosophy is that they hire people whose mothers and fathers have already trained them
these human skills! Once hired by Nordstrom, these employees learn about
Nordstrom’s beautiful merchandise. The rest is history!!

5. Winners Never Quit…Quitters Never Win! Both winners and losers get “knocked
down”! But what makes the difference? Losers stay down; winners get back up..again
and again and again! Don’t let these tough times knock you out of the game! Keep your
head up and straight! Stay around positive people! Stay around people that you can
learn from! Realize that you’re going “through”, not going to! This too, shall pass!!!

Sheri Watts, President/CEO
The Watts Connection, Inc.
P. O. Box 40205
Indianapolis, IN 46240-0205
Tel. #: 317-223-7556
Certified MBE

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