At yesterday’s Learn And Play Day, my refrain was this: to know that you’re on track with your own personal development and to help take the pulse of your customers’, ask these three questions (again, and again):
Am I learning?
Am I growing?
Am I enjoying?
Some thoughts that have occurred to me in the past few weeks as far as when to hang out the sign (or “when to say No Way!)…
–No Vacancy–when it comes to making declarations, decisions or policies simply because it’s what they want to hear
–No Vacancy–for taking the Easy-in-the-Short-Run and Deal-with-it-Later leadership
–No Vacancy–for putting off questions, discussions and decisions that are crying for attention.
Here’s the deal with hanging out No Vacancy signs–everyone, well most everyone, knows that the No Vacancy sign really means “don’t bother me,” “don’t rock the boat,” or “I don’t want to deal with this now (ever).”
So, let’s flip it around. Let’s take down the No Vanancy Signs…and try “Welcome” or “Newly Envisioned” or “Ask Me” signs instead.
This is the first view of the conference sight for ACURIL (Association of Caribbean University Research & Institutional Libraries) where I am presenting “Innovation Starts with ‘I'” tomorrow. This is generally not the type of view one sees upon arriving at a conference location. It is truly beautiful here.
Here’s what I realized within the first hour of being in this incredible location: no matter how beautiful and extraordinary the location, no matter how many creature comforts are offered, no matter how many photo-moments keep cropping up–it is the human interaction that drives one to love a place, to feel “at home.” . Good experiences can patch over an initial impression of not-so-good “customer service” (whatever you choose to call it), but still that first impression is strong! It leads me to consider the first impressions libraries and other organizations leave with our customers–especially first-time customers. Most of us don’t have a mythic ocean view to distract from any shortcomings. What do we do to be memorable and to make a customer feel happy to be in our location and want to come back?
First impressions: still very important.