Many people forget this to their detriment. As a result they are
perceived as overbearing, heartless, or inconsiderate.
Communication, marketing and outreach efforts backfire, generating
more animosity than good will. Take, for example, the recent
situation in Japan where several restaurant chefs earned one or
more Michelin stars, one of the culinary world’s great honors. But,
the chefs say they cook for their customers, not strangers – and
they don’t want the attention. Michelin may have assumed the
recognition would be welcome – if they did, they were wrong.

This came up in my recent post on
WashingtonPost.com
. I discuss the disconnect and how to correct
it: by taking the time to listen to the stories of valued clients.
Stories convey more than information. Storylistening, as I like to
call it, builds trust, increases rapport, and makes known more
about what your customers value than what they will come right out
and say. That’s because stories are replete with indicators rich
with meaning, if you know what to look for.

I listen to a lot of stories in my work. Many of my clients ask
me to determine emerging trends or spot opportunities. As a result
I conduct interviews regularly. They are short sessions, 15-30
minutes, but the value harvested can be taken to the bank. I learn
what others value, and that makes all the difference.

Executive Seminar fundraiser: Driving Growth in a Sluggish
Economy

I will be sharing strategies and tactics for building and
expanding business share in our challenging market at the Washington DC Board of Trade,
Thurs, Dec. 9, 7:30-10:00 am. 100% of proceeds
will benefit Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind, a DC
organization dedicated to helping the visually impaired achieve
independence. I serve on the Lighthouse’s advisory board and am
proud to invite you to attend in exchange for your tax-deductible
contribution:
$250 donation – 1 ticket
$500 donation – 3 tickets
$1,000 donation – up to 6 tickets and sponsorship with
recognition at the event
Send me an email to RSVP or request
more information.