It’s not easy being blue…

…but I like it!

blueWell done to Marilyn Paston, a boss who is prepared to give people a go. When looking for someone to work alongside people with disabilities, Paston was impressed with a young woman candidate. The 19-year-old job-seeker exuded self-confidence and cheerfulness, qualities you’d think would be useful in any work environment. But Paston seems to have been the only one in a long line of prospective employers who saw the young woman’s potential. Read the rest of this entry »

6 simple ways to welcome your clients

How warm is your welcome?

Some days my commute to work takes me past a roadside coffee stand. The man who runs this small business has a simple, no-cost but effective way of attracting customers. What is it?

He waves at every car that approaches.

Think about it. How many friendly waves do you get each day from complete strangers? Not many, I’m betting.

Now, if you were a coffee drinker and had passed him several days in a row, are you not more likely to stop at his stand if you have the time? He’s already made you feel special by acknowledging you day after day. What a genial fellow he must be, you think. It would be a pleasure doing business with him.

So, how warm is your welcome? Whether you run a small business or a small not-for-profit organisation, you want your clients to feel at ease, valued and respected.

Here are some no-cost ways you can do that: Read the rest of this entry »

Getting personal

Do you have the personal touch?

“With memories of love.” That’s what the card says. It’s from my vet, passing on their staff’s condolences on the death (euthanasia) of my beloved 15yr old cat. For reasons that are not worth going into, I had considered changing my vet the next time I get a pet, which will probably be within six months. But that one little act of compassion has made me reconsider. It shows the power of small kindnesses in keeping a relationship alive. So, whether you’re a businessperson aiming to keep your customers onside, or a not-for-profit organisation wanting to retain donors, or you just want to let someone you love know they are important – remember the personal touches.

Are you the retiring sort?

What would be your ideal retirement?

When you’re young, retirement seems aeons away. If you are like me, the official national superannuation start date is at least 15-20 years in the distance (depending on whether the government pushes back the age of eligibility).

To those of us in this latter category, retirement still seems somewhat distant, but plans for it become much more prominent in our thinking. That’s probably why I was particularly interested in the ways two people I met recently have approached retirement. I wonder which of these two is your ideal. Read the rest of this entry »