Well, the time is finally upon us. It’s the time of year when we should be enjoying the holidays and thinking about what lies ahead in the upcoming year. I know I’m not alone in feeling that every year the holiday season seems less and less relaxing. It’s more about last minute shopping, lists, parties, and wrapping up year-end activities. Sometimes I feel more like the Grinch than anything!
I recently read an article called Productivity Unplugged: Take Two Vacations and Call Me After the Holidays. Conceptually, of course this makes sense. We all need to take time off to recharge our batteries so we can do better work when we are “plugged in." The part that really struck a chord with me, though, is that we need to “unplug” – even if just briefly over the holidays – to better serve our customers. We must use the few days we are given around the holidays to clear our minds and reflect upon what we originally set out to do for our customers.
It’s very easy to get entrenched in day-to-day activities and completely lose sight of the customer’s goals and objectives. During your “unplugged” moments over the holidays, perhaps you should take just a moment to reflect back on a few items:
· What are my customers trying to achieve today and in the future?
· How can I help them achieve those objectives?
· How will their goals and objectives change as we head into 2010?
As we close out 2009, reflect on these questions, and start to think about what the New Year may bring, we should challenge ourselves to define how well we are really listening to customers, particularly during our busy times of the year. Take just a moment to “unplug” and think about how you could improve your relationships by just re-tuning in to your customer’s needs. It will certainly help you to be more successful in 2010!