Bring the Art of Jen into the Print room

Marcus Clifford encourages you to beef up your Strategic Intent! And while you’re at it, bring the pride of the crossroads of civilisation too. WOW! What a BOOM factor this could be for you and your business.

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Beatrice Warde wrote a fantastic piece ‘This is a Printing Office’, which has always filled me with great pride. What a great industry we work in. It ought to be on every wall and reception area, so we can puff out our chests. I also think it’s an important element in recruiting and a rallying cry to engage new people.

This is a Printing office
Cross-roads of civilization, Refuge of all arts
Against the ravages of time, Armoury of fearless truth
Against whispering rumour, Incessant trumpet of trade
From this place words may fly abroad
Not to perish as waves of sound
But fried in time, Not corrupted by the hurrying hand
But verified in proof
Friend, you stand on sacred ground
This is a Printing office.
Beatrice Warde

Link the pride you have for your business with strategic intent. Reignite the passion and belief in those you work with.

The Japanese have always been very good at using inspiring words and symbolism to create a vision worth striving for. Komatsu the manufacturer of earth moving equipment in the 70’s was under-resourced but set a bold strategic intent of ‘Encircle Caterpillar’ who were the then world leaders.

A statue of Komatsu encircling a Caterpillar tractor with these words was placed at the entrance to the building for all employees to file past as they went into work. It unleashed a competitive innovation storm which today sees Komatsu as a global leader and stronger than Caterpillar. Words and intent have a meaning and we can use them as powerful motivators.

What is your strategic Intent? ‘Encircle my competitors’

Build your Jen and differentiate yourself

Pronounced “Ren”, Jen is translated into English as “humanity” or “humaneness” and is the highest Confucian principle. All people have the capacity to be people of Jen because they are intrinsically good and motivated by a deep empathy for others – what might be called ‘Human-heartedness’ It’s a two-way street.

The Jen ratio takes good deeds and actions and divides this by bad deeds and actions. The greater the value of the Jen ratio, the more humane your world is. The smaller the number becomes, the clearer it is that you are immersed in dog-eat-dog world. How do we apply this to improve the effectiveness of customer-facing employees?

The Jen ratio and the power it has to differentiate your business. I often discuss using different titles for people as a differentiator and it also underpins some fundamental shifts in perception and delivery of a service towards your customers and unleashes the energy and creative motivation of your team.
For example, if you still have estimators, change their names to Directors of Innovation, as they usually can work out a clever way to do something differently, add value and show off their knowledge to benefit the client.

Customer experience is a battleground and Gartner suggests some 89% of businesses compete primarily on the basis of customer experience. Customer experience matters. It’s not just about products or services; it’s about how customers feel when interacting with your Brand. This is where people like me can come into your business and help you be objective and creative, enabling you to be different, add value and become more profitable.

The more savvy amongst the sector are increasingly focusing on ‘deep’ understanding of their customers, improving touchpoints, and creating memorable experiences that keep clients coming back for more. Online Print service providers are mastering this and we can and should do more to help ourselves win more. I have a series of short Pep and T sessions to enable you to capitalise on the market.

Become Jen warriors and see the benefits.

Customer-facing positions have always had unique challenges and rewards. While successfully balancing happy customers with preserved margins has usually meant a job well done, that simple formula has been under pressure for quite some time. Customers, empowered by their connectivity, demand increasingly creative solutions, while content management and customer relationship management systems supply real-time data that supports and complicates the route to the right answer.

How can your front-line team stay focused on providing creative solutions in an instant feedback, continuously connected environment? They can by providing a mindful approach to themselves, their interactions and their engagements to ensure more positives than negatives. Openly discussing this as part of team and individual feedback during team meetings is essential and builds bonds with a common purpose. If the goal is to expose our customers to creative energetic front-line workers, we must encourage caring engagement from our teams. Use Jen as a measure that can be verbalised and quantified.

The aim is to increase your Jen ratio. Quantifying and communicating this is all part of your service and the engagement of your customers. Promote this philosophy and gain buy-in, excitement and a point of difference from your competitors.

The mindful introduction of caring experiences in the form of top-notch and value-added exchanges can serve as an effective intervention to improve Jen ratio and the performance of our teams while enhancing the experience of our organisation for customers.

This is a snapshot of ideas and the many options to differentiate your business. The goal is to create your own unique formula and have buy-in from all your team to live and breathe the passion and Jen of doing business with you. BUT ensure you communicate it effectively to the outside world. If you do you will be more profitable and grow your sales.

Call Me, Marcus Clifford, 0774 381 8806.

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