Protocol Consultants International
The philosopher in me has been called out.
Challenges are inherent in life. Some of life’s most triumphant moments are shaped in the face of adversity. While some believe challenges are a curse, Elizabeth Kubler Ross feels, "If you shield the mountain from the windstorms, you'll never see the beauty of the carvings."
Like the mountains, we all experience different stages of gradation; we shift and we change, and with each challenge lies opportunity to make choices which form our values, determine our character and shape our destiny. The windstorms of our lives serve as opportunities to enhance our confidence. Once we learn how to confidently navigate the shifting landscape, we can bravely traverse the challenging terrain.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure."
While we may live in the moment we must not lose sight of the fact that in order to be fully effective we need to be fully present in the moment with other people. The way we conduct ourselves every day, and the way we treat others is noticed and judged. In fact, others notice more when what we are doing is NOT right.
I recently saw the Calvalia performance of Odyesso in Boston. The show features among other things, 58 male horses including Lipizzon stallions, Apolossas, and more. There was one beautifully choreographed vignette where teams of three and four magnificent horses were parading in unison around the stage in a figure-eight, with women standing, - one foot on each horse - quite a feat! The symmetry and artistry were flawless and the riders were perfectly in sync. This scene was stately, majestic, captivating. However, through all of this pageantry, I noticed one horse off to the left who would not conform. One horse decided to lie down, put his head on the sand on stage and watch his comrade horses perform. Soon, all audience eyes were on the one horse who would not perform, who was not doing it right. Hence, during this masterful and magnificent scene, the audience was actually laughing! As it turns out, this was not an arbitrary act of fate but in fact, part of a well-thought out well-choreographed performance. Producers chose to capitalize on the fact that we all do notice when others don't do it right and played the audience to work right into this scene.
We can learn from this exploit! First Impressions are lasting. Remember, 'the world's a stage' and this is not the dress rehearsal. Shakespeare says, "You need to know the rules before you can play the game." The game is life and it's true, "you never get a second chance to make a great First Impression!"
Nuances matter and 'perception is reality!' It's still all about People! How we conduct ourselves form the first handshake and the first "hello" helps determine the depth and direction of a future relationship and personal rapport. Getting it right the first time cannot be over-stated. When we demonstrate more respect, listen more attentively, communicate more effectively we are more resilient and flexible in a world where others notice, - a positive reflection on us. Demonstrating respect and consideration goes a long way in terms of advancing relationships and distinguishing ourselves from fierce global business competition which is the rule today.
Rudeness in the workplace is on the rise. According to a recent study* 96% of employees surveyed said they experience rudeness at work. Rudeness also incurs tangible costs to businesses including:
- lost work time worrying about the incident (80%)
- declining commitment to the organization (78%)
- decline in work performance (66%)
- … and more.
Fact: people choose how they conduct themselves.
Question: Are we choosing rudeness as a lifestyle?
I think not. We are inherently a compassionate society with the good and sensitive side of our humanity far outweighing the negative. We all say, and do things without thinking and then we become comfortable and ultimately, set in our ways. Let these studies and (this) article(!) serve to create awareness of the way others’ actions are being perceived.
The good news is, we are noticing, and more importantly, calling others on it to let them know:
- rude conduct is not acceptable
- we reject uncivilized behavior
- we are taking a stand against rude behavior
NOT responding would be far worse.
*(Ref.: Georgetown University and Thunderbird School of Management study.)
The recent query and controversy regarding Drew Breese ($3 tip on a $74 order) for take-out) prompts the question: To tip or not to tip counter staff for takeout orders in restaurants with dining rooms.
Answer: It is not necessary to tip staff at fast food or an exclusively take-out restaurant because the service is included in the price. Tipping for take-out orders in restaurants with dining rooms to acknowledge the effort in creating an enjoyable meal (especially where extras/exceptions have been requested) is appropriate. Tipping is a way of saying "thank you" in the ways that matter. Tipping is appropriate when counter staff make extra efforts or are especially pleasant and help make your take-out experience and maybe even your day(!) more pleasant. When counter staff display small, simple courtesies such as using your name, making conversation, ... are pleasant (!) and respectful..., etc. this is appreciated and should be duly acknowledged... in the ways that matter.
Insuring Prompt Service also suggests pleasant service and being polite, friendly, respectful and efficient when interacting with customers from the time an order is placed to the time the order is handed to them, is all part of the service.
Whenever a customer wants to tip, regardless of the amount they are recognizing efforts to create an enjoyable meal which is appreciated. The $3 tip technically, was not even required from Mr. Breese who was making a gesture.
In this recent very public blunder by the restaurant, it is refreshing to see that they took responsibility for the error. Read the manager's statement from the Del Mar Rendezvous Restaurant here.
I am ever so thankful for the friendships and business relationships I have made over the years. Thanksgiving Day is when many of us share food and give thanks for the blessing in our lives. I am honoured and privileged to work with so many fine people, and I ask that we all take time to give Thanks for what we have, and be as Kind and Giving as we can.
Sometimes a charity really resonates with me, and I feel compelled to share my excitement with friends and clients. The mission of Caritas Smile is to INSPIRE, EDUCATE, EMPOWER and instill a sense of BELIEF to Women and Children in need. It is my hope that you will consider this organization for a charitable gift in 2012.
One was to support Caritas Smile is to attend their 2nd Annual All White Masquerade Ball on November 10 in Downtown Providence at the Marriot. Tickets are available for $75, and you can order them on their website.
If you cannot attend an event in Rhode Island, please visit their website and consider donating through their Support the Happiness Movement link.
Thank you for your kind attention, and thank you for anything that you can do to support this worthy casue.
Please visit Caritas Smile
I was honoured to have been invited by my friend and colleague, Ms. Catherine Blake, CEO, Sales Protocol Consultants who teaches The Business of Sales at the Whittemore School of Business & Economics, University of New Hampshire recently. We had a fabulous afternoon and evening reviewing key topics pertaining to Professional Presence as well as an amazing catered dinner and Dining Savvy tutorial.
With the support of Dr. Tom Gruen, Dr. Nelson Barber, Dr. Kuo, Mr. John Cote, Mr. John Lilly, and Ms. Jarlene Hatfield from UNH Dining Services, the evening was quite a success! Ms. Blake has told us that more than one student thought it was one of the most memorable experiences they have had at UNH.
I would like to thank you all, for your continued terrific support of our important message. I value your positive energy and all feedback. Through the years, I have had the great pleasure of meeting and working with you and your esteemed colleagues across all disciplines. Thanks to you, I have been positioned to continually play "up" and, as a result, have grown as a person, a professional and as a woman. You have enriched my life personally and professionally and value the special friendships which have evolved. I honour your continued confidence and support and will always feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have such fabulous clients. Thank you!
Please enjoy our latest addition to our Protocol Tips page - International Awareness. If you are serious about conducting business, research your target country, and know cultures, customs and traditions.
Please join me in making New Year's resolutions to not only better ourselves and our lives however, future generations and their ability to grow and prosper to have the opportunities we have always known as business professionals and Americans.
For my friends in the Rhode Island area, please tune in to AM 790 on Wednesday, December 16 at 4 p.m. as I join Patricia Raskin on the Patricia Raskin Positive Living radio show. The timely topic will be holiday workplace etiquette. Patricia is a nationally recognized multi-media radio talk show host, award-winning producer, media coach, speaker and author. She is recognized by her peers and listeners as the "powerhouse voice" behind lifestyle, health and wellness, inspirational, and personal growth talk radio.
Before entering a room or approaching any one, pause and observe. Feel the room's energy and as you enter, feel your own confidence emerge. Let others feel your energy, which you exude. Now, envision others gravitating toward you. Visualize this and it will happen. "I think therefore I am." Renee Descartes.
How did "have a nice day!" come to be 'ave a gooh wuh?' If you find yourself saying this and other modern day social colloquialisms, please know you are not alone however, professionally, others do notice and for some, in business, the impression reflected on you is not so positive. Here is a list of some more common 'isms' we have assembled to help make you more aware of knowing How to Stand Apart in all the most positive, powerful ways.
People of major religions around the world have just celebrated the highest holidays in their faith, and before we bypass theses days and begin to prepare for the upcoming graduation season and summer vacations, let us pause and reflect. How do we select heroes in our lives? Are they people of great character? Are they people with high moral standards? Are they teachers and leaders?
Have we noticed that many of our (former) sports heroes, leading political figures, religious heads and people in our everyday lives have fallen from grace and disappointed us? As we identify people to serve as role models in our lives, let's take care and recognize the characteristics that we truly wish to emulate.
At Protocol Consultants International, our call for a Day of Civility depends on your commitment and active participation. You can make that commitment, by choosing carefully, the people who you call "role models" in your lives!