Being The Example Of Your Work
You should be an absolute walking/talking example of your work at every point and in turn, you will build trust with your customers.
I have always been a strong believer in leading by example in everything I do. If I am not prepared to do something, then I shouldn’t expect anybody else to do it either. Going back many years when I was a Supervisor at Hyatt Regency Hotel, this was definitely my mantra. Why do you sometimes see the supermarket manager on the checkout? Or why is the hotel manager at the Front Desk checking a guest in? I am sure they have many other things to be doing but it wouldn’t give them the insight as to what they are asking their staff to do.
Just image a boss that asks all his staff to stay back until the job is completed and yet he drives off nice and early for a game of golf. How do you think this will affect his staff morale? Act as if you are part of the team, not always the head of it. That will mean you may have to dig in and do actual work, too. People will appreciate that you are personally knowledgeable about the effort needed to get the work done. This will also help build trust within your organisation.
There’s hardly anything worse for company morale than leaders who practice the “Do as I say, not as I do” philosophy. When this happens, you can almost see the loss of enthusiasm and goodwill among the staff. It’s like watching the air go out of a balloon and the cynicism and disappointment usually take its place. As a manager, it is your responsibility to lead by example. Mahatma Gandhi and Alexander the Great helped change the world because they lived by example and, as a result, they accomplished great things.
There are two things that mostly define a brand – your reputation and your actions. Each is intrinsically tied to one another and your actions impact your reputation, and your reputation defines what action you need to take.
I believe in your own business should also be a true reflection of your work. Don’t just say you are the best, prove it. Look at your marketing and ask yourself ‘does it truly reflect my business?’ For example, when I talk to clients about social media management, what is the first thing they are going to do? Or perhaps the first thing they did before we even started talking? Yes, of course. They are going to use their computer to research my social media marketing to ensure that I am walking the talk with my business. And your customers are no different.
Look at all aspects of your business from the customer’s point of view and see what they are looking at. From the website, social media, marketing brochures, signage and advertising should all be representing your true beliefs and core values. If you say you can do something, you better have some examples ready or on display. Use every possible communication tool to build commitment and support for the bigger picture.
So apart from talking about what you can do, what you have or what you can achieve, you need to also ensure you are walking in those boots.