February 1, 2011
Look For Things That Please Your Partner
Always Looking to Have a Satisfied Customer
To be able to rationally and intuitively figure out what your partner likes and dislikes, then act in accordance, will make you a great customer service rep who gets terrific business.
Extravagant Customer Service
If you want to make it big in business or in love, you need to be a great customer service rep. Like LL Bean, Starbucks, Nordstrom’s, Costco, and a number of great personally owned businesses, you need to use great communication skills using both reason and intuition. Owners and employees of very successful establishments are fanatic about pleasing the customer, and feel genuinely upset or disappointed if a customer is not happy. So you have things like long-term money-back guarantees, free cups of coffee, helpful even if you don’t buy, and friendly, friendly, friendly. They are extraordinarily customer-friendly, and sometimes even extravagant.
Courtship is a time when both partners are extraordinarily kind, thoughtful, loving, and respectful. and then there’s marriage…or some other comfortable arrangement that gets dull. Now no one can maintain the exact level of courtship intensity during “real life,” and yet there are many times when you can— and you’d better—be courting your partner if you want a serious love affair for the rest of your life. This means that you are always on the lookout for what pleases your partner and what displeases your partner.
Principles of Good Service
Here are some important guidelines for pleasing your partner more and more:
- “The Customer is Always Right.” Do you remember this expression? This is like looking for the “grain of truth”—at least the grain. A complaint or request is always validated and honored—in some way.
- Don’t Blame Your Partner for making a complaint. This is all a customer needs to hear, right? Noting a problem and then being criticized or discounted. Or hearing excuses and rationalizations. Oi!
- Figure Things Out. Look for the message, whether direct or indirect. Like a detective, look for hints and clues. Don’t play dumb by always asking for examples and clarification, especially when you know darn well what’s up.
- Surprise Your Partner with extraordinary attention, respect, and validation. Make amends when appropriate, by making both obvious and “anonymous” amends.
Partner-Customer Service in Action
Use these examples as a guide to get something good going in your relationship:
- Your partner complains that the dishes you washed are still dirty. You say, “Yeah, you’re right; I didn’t do such a great job,” (and you rewash them—without complaint). (Grain of truth)
- You get a request to “answer the question,” which of course you thought you just brilliantly answered. Instead of criticizing for being unappreciative, you answer more directly, or ask to hear the question again if you lost focus. (Not blaming your partner, Giving attention and respect)
- Instead of frequently asking, “What? Whadaya mean? I don’t get you. I don’t know what you’re talking about,” you say “I’m sorry. I was inattentive. Please repeat….” or “ I think what you mean is….” (Figuring things out)
- When your partner says something important (whether a request or sharing a meaningful thought or feeling), you stop what you’re doing, give good eye contact, and make an offer or respond positively in some way. (Surprising your partner)
Notice you are not making excuses or looking for a pat on the back. If you feel a healthy need to explain yourself or to point out what you have done and would like a response, you do it 8 to 24 hours later. You can get your turn, and are not greedy for it. Being graciously responsive to your partner (as your primary directive) will get you loads of loving business from your primary customer.
If you have a serious intent to please your partner more, then take these practical steps asap:
1st List some things, both big and little, that please and displease your partner. Highlight what you believe are the more significant items, including pet peeves.
2nd Ask your partner to comment on your list of significant items, and finish by picking one—aloud—that you promise to unconditionally work on, and then figure a way to put more action steps in your daily planner.
3rd Since there will probably be an important item that you find difficulty in addressing, determine the ability and discipline you will need, and plan an uncomplicated personal growth project in that area. Read and get counsel.