There’s only 17 shopping days left until Christmas. A little daunting isn’t it?
For some reason time seems to get away from us this time of year, and the demands on our time seem to be, and mostly are, greater.
But still, it’s the most wonderful time of the year. It’s the season of giving, and although we still shop for material things on our families wish lists, when it comes to employees and customers, we often take a fallback position and do the ‘usual.’ There’s no time to be creative and of course, no realistic way of being responsive to what each individual may want.
But there’s one thing, of extraordinary value we can give them, that’s never seen on a wish list. It’s the gift of authenticity. Oscar Wilde described it to a tee when he said, ‘Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.’ While friends and family may know our authentic selves, too often in business, we feel we need to cover that up because after all, we’re in charge, or we’re the boss, or we’re just afraid to show our true selves in a business environment. Maybe too, there are a few of us who feel that who we are isn’t good enough. But that’s not true at all. We’re plenty good and if you have any doubts, just think about how far you’ve come this year alone and how much you’ve grown in the distance between yesterday and today!
Authenticity is a gift that’s uniquely your own. No one can take it from you, and your competition can’t steal it. It belongs to you and it’s meant to be shared. It taps in to that emotional connection that binds you, your employees and your loyal customers.
Understanding your time constraints right now, what if I told you, you can still ‘do the usual’ for your employees and customers, but by adding just one additional step, exceed expectations demonstrate your authenticity and become memorable. Would you do it?
Of course you would. So think about this:
- What would happen if along with that little bonus check you give to your employees, you wrote them a personal thank you – mentioning perhaps that little extra something they did during the year that contributed to your combined success? Remember, personalizing means the guy that sits one cube over doesn’t get the same note. Let your people know you remember them individually and appreciate their value.
- What would happen if instead of sending out that notepad, or 2015 calendar with your logo slapped all over it, you sent a hand-written note through the mail – thanking them for their business and letting them know how much you appreciate them?
It doesn’t cost much to say thank you, and take it from one who knows, it’s truly a gift that keeps on giving. When you let people know how valuable they are to you, you become more valuable to them.
Granted, you can’t mean everything to everyone, you can mean more to the people who matter most.
Sometimes, a simple ‘thank you,’ is all it takes.
“Feeling good about your life, but not expressing a heartfelt ‘thank you,’ is like wrapping a gift for someone and never giving it to them.”
– Chip Conley