Do you have a Standard Operating Procedure for Kindness in your office?
My name is Marjorie, and I’ve been the Office Manager for First Direct Corp. for over 16 years. Recently, I’ve embarked into empty-nester (both my children are graduated from college and starting their own lives), so I started cleaning out. While wading through the memorabilia of my children, there in the midst of dog-eared award certificates, honorable mentions, old plaques of soccer and sports, was an Appreciation and Recognition Award Certificate designed by our president for my children, who were then 10 and 8 years old. It was a gift certificate for two tickets to a movie matinee at our local theater. A thank you to my children for “excellent service” and “tremendous help” to me as part of our office.
It reminded me how at First Direct “kindness” is Standard Operating Procedure (SOP). Organizational culture trickles down from the top … our President – Bob Ritter.
As most visitors to GoldMineSuccess.com know, we sell GoldMine CRM software. What does kindness have to do with Goldmine CRM? Asked another way, what does kindness have to do with Customer Relationship Management?”
My Mom passed in 2010, but while she was alive, she would regularly ask me “what kindness happened this week” … and I would describe the kindness for the week. Yuup, EACH WEEK … it could be a get-well card mailed out (yes, snail mail!) to a client who is sick or injured … or maybe a client or a family member celebrated their wedding vows and I see a scheduled next action to send a wedding card. (All cards are personally signed by our president.) Or, maybe a small donation to a fund-raiser whose child is enduring cancer treatments.
Some things you can do with GoldMine CRM to schedule kindness:
- Delegate an interoffice action for administrative staff to send a card
- Schedule a next action for your admin staff to contact a customer to check in on them
- Reply to a client’s email who mentions a wedding, sickness, birth of baby – and BCC (blind copy) your admin staff, so they can send the appropriate card
- Stock Gift Cards in small denominations “ready to go” in a moment’s notice to be included in a thank you card to a client who recommended you – i.e., Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts
- Stay alert to your client’s physical location and events which may affect them such as floods hurricanes, tornadoes, disasters, etc – be quick to send an encouraging word and offer your service with something special to assist them through
- Store resources in your CRM database that you can leverage for relationship building purposes (e.g. website links for flowers, baked goods, wine, fruit, used books, etc.)
- Used books? … Yes! One of my favorite acts of kindness was a beautiful book of encouragement for one of our clients who was undergoing chemo to let them know they were thought of. The book arrived here and we packaged it up with a beautiful card. Expensive? Nope … it was a second-hand book and our client was so taken-back. But it’s just SOP kindness around here.
I’ve edited 16 years of our president’s beautiful emails to clients and vendors who were victims of disasters … where we offered discounted pricing to help … sound like a sales pitch? … nope, I gotta tell ya … simply nope. (And, thanks to GoldMine we are able to target the email to the afflicted area to create the target group!)
In many cases, we’ve gone to the manufacturer of the products we sell to get discounted pricing to help our customer’s purchase GoldMine who have special hardships. Time-consuming? Absolutely … but, here it’s SOP kindness.
So, each week the highlight of my chats with Mom would be a description of the kindness that was scheduled in GoldMine for me. My Mom has since passed away and, true to form, the act of kindness our president bestowed on me during this time was an incredibly well-written, heartfelt, sympathy email of information of my family’s loss to our closest of customers and vendors. That email triggered an avalanche of flowers, cards, emails, plants and kindness that poured out for weeks. SOP kindness grew legs!
Although this points toward the kindness of our company, but this article really is a dedication to my Mom for helping me recognize kindness and appreciate kindness. SOP kindness at First Direct is legendary and she put the importance on the map for asking me each week.
My thought for all you businesses out there is to schedule kindness in your GoldMine. There is no greater blessing or reward to you, your clients, and your staff, than to shower them with kindness. Make it SOP as we do here.