The Blog of Terrence H. Seamon for posts about change, transition, leadership, and Life
"How Do I Survive?"
On the phone the other day with a client, he asked me, "Terry, How do I survive?"
I rattled off an answer*...
...but his question is haunting me.
Many of us who are "north of 50" years of age are feeling somewhat fragile these days, like the steamrollers of our time are going to mow us down at any moment.
What would you tell a client or a friend if they asked you, How do I survive?
*The answer I gave my client included the following four points:
Don't stop networking after you land the job you are seeking. Keep your network alive and fresh. Stay in touch with people. You never know when you may need to leverage these relationships again.
Stay healthy. You aren't getting any younger. Find ways to stay active and fit. Challenge your body and your mind.
Stay current in your field. Be learning all the time. Read. Take courses. Watch TED talks. Expand your mind.
Reconnect to your purpose.
Later, some additional thoughts surfaced:
Build community. Become many by embracing others.
Push yourself out of your self isolation.
Reach out for help. Seek out a coach. Accept feedback.
Stop doing things that are not adding value toward the goals you are seeking.
Start doing things differently.
Take a different road.
My colleagues at ODNet added some wisdom.
"Broaden your world and your network. Volunteer. Working with others who have been steamrolled puts your life into perspective." "Don’t be so quick to say no to gigs. While they may not be perfect, take them because you will be placed in a situation to meet the people you are destined to meet. No one, and I mean no one knows where the next gig comes from so get out there with a bigger net." "Find healthy and supportive communities in which to participate. Whenever possible, give to those who are in greater need. It helps with perspective."
Serving customers is one of the most challenging jobs out there. You need to be a good listener, an effective communicator, a calm conflict mediator, and an analytical problem solver all rolled into one. You must be very organized and have infinite patience. Plus you need to wear a sunny disposition even on days when you don't feel like it.
Many have endeavored to capture the key ingredients in customer service, so I have decided to throw my hat into the ring as well.
I call my approach Customer Service With HEART:
H = Help and Hear - You are there to Help the customer. Plain and simple. And the first (and most important) thing you do is listen. Hear the customer fully before responding. This may be the toughest part of listening. We have to make the choice to listen, especially when we are busy, preoccupied, stressed, and distracted. When you focus on the Other, pay attention to What is being said, as well as What is not being said. This includes the non-verbal signs the person i…