It’s Never Too Late

Everyone I know – my friends, employees and even our UPS driver, is so insanely busy they can hardly see straight; I’m sure you’re no different. Americans, always known for living large & fast, have kicked it into another gear altogether with the help of technology. If you turn on a tv or open your internet browser you are well aware that an entire self-help industry focused on “slowing down” and “finding peace” has sprung up to help us survive in this lightening speed world.

I’m a big believer that the only way to survive without losing your mind is to accept that you can’t keep up with everything and you cannot be perfect; choices must be made. It may be that your house doesn’t look museum-tidy when a neighbor drops by, or that YOU don’t look like a hollywood starlet because you can’t work out EVERY SINGLE DAY. We ALL must make our own choices of course, but there is one area, if you want to be successful professionally, that you CANNOT choose to relax the rules on and that is CIVILITY & PROFESSIONALISM.

A million columns have been written about the lost art of handwritten notes, but don’t worry – I have not completely lost my mind – I KNOW we don’t have time for that on a regular basis. But if you don’t have time to return phone calls and emails, or to thank a client for their business, you might as well close up shop. And NO, I don’t have some arbitrary time limit by which time these calls/emails must be returned, but they must at some point. Believe me, there are times I’ve returned an email a month late, and NO, I am not proud of that fact but I do know this: the recipient completely understood and was glad that I hadn’t altogether bailed. Gary Vaynerchuck of Crush It fame acknowledges every single email, blog post or comment that comes his way. He doesn’t promise to do it in a timely manner, but he does it and every single recipient remembers the one they got.

The same with Thank Yous – I know it seems arcane and time consuming, but it is more powerful than you can imagine when a new or existing client, drudging through their stack of junk mail & bills, comes across your note to say that YES, you do appreciate their business. Personally I use because they allow me to customize my thank yous and I don’t even have to get up from my computer to sent it, but any Thank You that comes in the mail (no emails) is more powerful than you can imagine. So make yourself the commitment right now that, although your world is as crazy as everyone else’s you are going to go the extra mile and become known as the one Pro that gets back to people and acknowledges your clients & friends. Not only will it help your business, it will help you. Just do it and you’ll know what I mean.

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