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Donnelly Effect delivers 17 in '17: 17 actionable SPARKS to ignite your team for better leadership, customer and employee experience and a better bottom line.

All business leaders have the same goal in mind: to develop trust among employees and build a loyal following of satisfied clients along the way. Today’s customers have service expectations higher than ever before, so accomplishing this goal is easier said than done. The key to SUCCESS? Providing consistent, thoughtful service, of course.

However, finding ways to keep these customer service messages fresh, upbeat, and interesting to your employees throughout the year can be a real challenge. After all, what good is your message if it falls on deaf ears?

Leaders can leverage ANY holiday to theme customer service messages that awaken even the most tired programs. Conveniently, holidays pop-up every few months, giving you plenty of opportunities to reinforce your most important business strategy. Take Halloween for example. A world without exceptional service? Now, that’s just plain scary!


“BOO!” to scary service

We already know that precise consistent messages are most effective for influencing change. We also know messages without a little oomph will fall flat — especially those we’ve heard time and time again.

Halloween is the perfect occasion to contextualize your customer service messages. Knowing that customer service is more than just key traits, but an aggregate of behaviors, actions, and tone. Effective leaders ask themselves: “how can I connect this idea to my team in a unique and compelling way?”

For example, bad service — or worse, inconsistent service — is detrimental to your bottom line. In fact, we could even venture to say such behaviors are downright scary to a new customer meeting your front line for the first time. Halloween is a holiday that lends itself to scare tactics and spooky premonitions. So, it’s entirely possible to engage your fellow team members in a proactive presentation that maps out the differences between scary service behaviors and welcoming behaviors. One will spook — or turn away — potential customers while the other will help put apprehensive people at ease in an unfamiliar environment.

Why this is effective

Leaders can better inspire their employees by delivering the same time-tested value statements in a new and exciting way. Even the best ideas will fizzle if delivered at the wrong time. Sometimes the quickest way to ensure your ideas resonate with your audience is to consider timing.

But it’s not just Halloween that lends itself to differentiated approaches. Use Thanksgiving to reinforce your mission and attach meaning to your work through narrative storytelling. The Christmas season is the perfect reminder that inspired and engaging service is universal, no matter how many grumpy scrooges tend to emerge from the wood work in December.

At a time when so many businesses neglect the little things in exchange for profit margins and promotional pizzazz, effective leaders leverage these occasions to ensure that service quality doesn’t slip. Every unique holiday tradition provides another opportunity to revamp your service messages for maximum effect.

The holidays come and go, but your commitment to service remains the same. We’re in the holiday homestretch right now. Think about how you can leverage these themes to revamp your messages and SPARK a new service flame within your employees.
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Missed our previous SPARKS? Check them out below!

: With over 20 years of Disney leadership experience, Mike Donnelly, Chief Experience Officer (CEO) of Donnelly Effect shares his insights on Talent Selection and HiringEmployee OnboardingCustomer ExperienceService Culture and Leadership-among others. Donnelly Effect is home of the exclusive "World-Class Workshop" series and offers consulting services and keynote addresses to audiences of all sizes and industries. Since 2007, Mike Donnelly has been a contracted Disney Institute Facilitator, delivering Disney customer service training to audiences across the United States. 


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