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Apr 8, 2018

How do you handle it when things don’t go right?

If you are a manager or leader – YOU MUST OWN the situation.

Owning anything is defined as belonging to oneself. And also accepting responsibility, being accountable in situations.

When it comes to customers you have an opportunity to win or lose big. Especially in the current connected economy.

I had a less than pleasurable experience at a hotel in Denver over the weekend. The way that the hotel management handled the situation was excellent. So when everything was finished, I left feeling like me and my family were important, valued and listened to.

As a leader, you MUST accept any and all responsibility. For your business, for the staff – When things go right, it is a team effort and the reward should be spread. The best leaders know, that when things go sideways, it’s their fault – and therefore their job to find a solution. When you do – it shows confidence, caring and reinforces strong leadership.

So let’s talk about some steps to own and rectify situations when they don’t go as planned.

Step 1. Listen to understand - the customers, or other persons, point of view; you are not just listening to respond.

Step 2. Reassurance that things will be taken care of. If you have truly listened at the onset – you should be able to offer what a potential solution is to the situation.

Step 3. Appreciation. Thank the person for taking the time to communicate with you.

Step 4. Apology. When it is necessary, if you, your organization, a person in your business, whatever, has messed up. Then ultimately, it’s YOU. Apologize. A genuine, “I’m sorry” still carries weight. It’s not always about someone getting perks, or free stuff, people just want to know that you are genuine, and they want to be heard.

Step 5. Follow through. Do what you say you will. If you are committing to additional training, reprimand, whatever it is. Follow through – otherwise, your organization will NEVER change.

Step 6. Follow up. (This may be optional, depending on the situation.) Call back, meet in person, whatever level you think necessary to speak again to the customer, or the person that felt wronged in the first place. Make sure that they feel good about the outcome and taken care of!

So I tell you this today – OWN TODAY! Accept the responsibility! You got this!

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