Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The power of the word

I’m quite distraught. I was eating my personal trainer approved afternoon snack of 12 almonds (my suggestion of 12 Tim Tams: not approved) when I got a lovely crunchy surprise in my mashed up almond mix. Part of a rear tooth had dislodged and was busily working its way towards my small intestine.

Having my wisdom teeth stitches “accidentally” left in for about 2 weeks too long has left me with a justified fear of going in to see the man with the drill. Not to be deterred I picked up the phone and was told by the monotone receptionist: “you won’t be getting in for at least 4 weeks”.

Now note this was not “our next vacancy is in 4 weeks” or “I’m really sorry, barring dental emergencies we won’t be able to fit you in for 4 weeks” this was simply “you won’t be getting in for at least 4 weeks”.

The front face of this business, the director of customer relations and the person I think is responsible for calming irrational odontophobics like me (yes, that’s the word for those who fear the dentist) had actually somewhat alleviated my fear... by replacing it with indignation!

In your business or in your workplace does your front face realise the power of the word? Do you? Perhaps take a leaf out of my hair dresser's book – they answer every phone call with “Thank you for calling Bladerunner. How can I make your day today?” It’s a bit zany, it makes them laugh and it makes me smile.

The power of the word can invoke rage, or cultivate a fan – what do the words at your business do?

By Kirsty Dunphey with 3 comments


Yesterday I scoured the web for my daughter and hubby to see if I could find some vinyl for their new carpet cleaning van.
I found a pro looking website and gave them a call.
"Yeah" was the greeting.
Did I have a wrong number, perhaps dialled the backroom?
No, that was the boss on the line.
I'm after a simple square sticker, can you give me a rough price on that please?
"Dunno, um, maybe send me an email".
Sure thing...click...
How they stay in buiness beats me...

Dave - I know, we can all find examples of where it's done poorly (sadly) - makes the examples of finding it done fabulous even the more special! Kirsty

Kirsty thanks for your reply.
You would know better than most the importance of the "front desk", that first point of contact, that first impression.
I enjoy your blog and thank you for your input.

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