The Business of Respect

We’re getting into another holiday season, with Good Friday today, Passover starting tonight and Easter on Sunday. With some of the recent events and these holidays coming up I thought it would be a good idea to talk about something we as business owners can struggle with: the human side of things. I get it, we all want sales, we all want to grow our businesses, but I don’t think that has to happen at the expense of others, or without regard of others. Let’s talk about a few specific examples.

Easter/Passover: there’s a large percentage of the population who will celebrate one of these holidays, and anytime there’s a holiday it means increased stress levels, even if you don’t celebrate the holiday personally because many other people around you will be stressing out. A little more patience and a little consideration can go a long way to diffusing potential tensions and reducing the general stress level.

Social media: I was talking recently with several people who have used social media for their business but really didn’t get it or know how to use it for their business. Yes, businesses do get sales from social media, but it can’t be ignored that it’s social media, not sales media, and that the social aspect is often the missing link between the engagement numbers they have and those they want.

Facebook’s data issue: in some ways it may not seem like a big issue, because “they’re just numbers” but behind that data is a lot more than just numbers on a page, they’re little bits of many people’s lives. At this point the mistakes have happened so changes should be made as a result of the issue and the companies involved need to take responsibility, and then apologies should be issued, with sensitivity to the fears, frustrations, and concerns that people are experiencing.

Feelings and relationships: I was reading an email from one of the business coaches I’ve connected with and she was sharing about her birthday last year and last few months with her father before he died. It was a sweet email and reminded me about the stories and relationships that each of us have, and how as businesses if we’re able to build even a fraction of that kind of relationship with our customers we’re lucky.

No, not every moment in business is a touchy-feely one, there’s a lot of business that is very cut and dried. But behind each and every sale there’s a person, someone who will use the product you’ve created, someone who will share that product with someone they love, someone who will apply your wisdom to their life, someone who will use your service to help someone else, which means it’s not just something you’re creating for and selling to one person, it’s something that can affect many. So how can you make this weekend special for the people you help in your business?

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