Steve DiGioia

Awesome You’re Not. You’re a Gigantic Failure as a Manager

That’s a pretty harsh statement, I know. But hear me out…. Chris can’t seem to get along with Susan. Kevin always comes in late. Derrick, well, he’s just a poor performer. And, Donna, seems to make everything about race, harassment, or favoritism. Face it, you’ve got a dismal group of employees. They’re bad and many need to go. So, who is at fault here? I say it’s the manager’s fault. Here’s why.
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Drop the Cute Puppy and Let Your Stars Shine

Every business has its underachievers. But today’s post is not about them. It’s about those precious, and few, overachievers. You know, that one or maybe two, star employees who always seem to find a way to prove their value and serve your customers better than anyone could have expected.
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10 Smart Ways to Cater to Your Local Customers

You may work for a giant worldwide conglomerate that maintains a core set of values, standards, and practices, but can each of these standards be maintained in every venue? Well, if you’re the Ritz Carlton or McDonald’s, you can. (NOTE: McDonald’s has regional variations in their menu to accommodate local tastes)

What is Customer Service, Really? – Tip #40

In today’s ever-competitive marketplace, businesses are always looking for the next big thing:. What’s the hottest social media channel to spend our time on?. How can we incorporate more technology into our business?. How can we attract more millennials, what’s important to them?. But they forget the...

5 Things Pro Wrestling Teach Us About Customer Service

Ok, ok, so I’m a wrestling fan. So what? Maybe you are too. There are millions of us. And we watch it every week. I’ve been doing that since I was a teenager. I used to take the train from my home in Brooklyn, NY to Madison Square Garden in Manhattan each month to watch the matches in person. It was so much fun. I have many fond memories as a kid watching some of the greats like Bruno Sammartino, Pedro Morales, Andre the Giant, Chief Jay Strongbow, George the Animal Steele, and many more. So, what can pro wrestling teach us about customer service?

Are You Letting Your Business Become Stereotyped? – Tip #39

Stereotype: a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing. Business stereotypes are preconceived notions that every customer has of your business. What do they expect when doing business with you? Are the expectations good or bad?. What image or idea...

When the Sh*t Hit the Fan, I Always Knew What To Do

I was never rattled by an upset customer. Never hesitated to speak with them, never cowered in fear, and never pushed them off to a coworker. I looked forward to the opportunity to “make things right”. When the sh*t hit the fan, I always knew what to do.

I Talk About People Behind Their Back

I don’t gossip or finger-point. I don’t assign blame or give putdowns. I don’t accuse or assume faults. No, I don’t. But I do talk about people behind their back. I don’t spy on them, but I do pay attention. I see what they’ve been...

This is the Best Kind of Smile – Tip #38

Ladies and gentlemen don’t speak ill of their competition. That’s not how it was done years ago, and they refuse to do so today. Competition is a healthy part of business; it makes you better, stronger – just as with most other hardships. Have a Reason to...

Is Your Pocket on Fire and Nobody Notices? – Tip #37

Why do some businesses lose sight of the big picture when it comes to their customers?. We all want the “big sale” and may prioritize the customers as they come in our doors; the biggest customer goes to the best salesperson; the little customers are portioned out among the weaker newbies. But shouldn’t they realize that a small customer can lead to a bigger customer, increased business, and more customers down the road?

Is It Really That Important That I’m Wearing a Name Tag?

There’s always that one employee who refuses to follow directions. It seems that no matter how many times you talk to him, he continues to “forget” to do what he’s told or at worst, intentionally refuses to do it. So, what do you do with an employee like this? Sure, we can give him a kick in the rear and show him the door, but you never want to lose an otherwise half-decent employee if you can help it. But even one who gives you a line like this; “Is it really that important that I’m wearing my name tag?”

Do You Confirm? How Uncertainty Costs You Money

There are 2 kinds of people. One always asks for directions (or at least is not hesitant to ask) In a past Tips on Thursday newsletter, I wrote about taking the initiative, finding your own course of action, and making a decision based on experience, availability, practicality, etc. This mindset seems to match those who never ask for directions because they can make their own decisions.

Let Them Go, Really…Just Let Them Go! – Tip #36

Being in the hospitality industry for 20+ years, and providing customer service for many more, I have learned that you win some and lose some. No customer interaction will be perfect for your business. A customer’s taste, perception, culture, expectations, etc. all boil down to “their” opinion of your product or service. What you offer is not what YOU think it is but what the CUSTOMER thinks it is. They have the final determining vote. If they like it, you win. If not, you lose.

The Granny Food Thief Strikes Again

Many years ago, while I was supervising a banquet event, I came across this sweet little old lady who would constantly crash the cocktail hours for the business events. My property hosted many groups that, after their day-long meeting, would have a 1-hour farewell reception for the attendees. The attendees would network with their fellow associates and anyone else invited.

Get It Fixed, Then Clam Up!

In the service industry, problems happen every day. An employee makes a mistake, and the customer is, at best, disappointed. Or angry, at worst. It’s inevitable. It happens. It’s part of any operation that has many “moving” parts. “Service recovery”, a company’s resolution of a problem from a dissatisfied customer, comes next. Your job is to get it fixed, then clam up. Here’s what I mean.

Job Seekers Must Remember This – Tip #35

The only reason a business hires someone is that they have a job that needs to be done and they need someone to do it. If they hire you, you get paid for your efforts. You are not promised lifetime employment, nor do you need to offer it to them. There is mutual agreement of cooperation on both sides created by the efforts of each.

Should We Expect WOW Service?

I dropped my car off at the dealership the other day for a minor repair. I didn’t know what to expect since this is my first time using them. Two hours later I got the call that it was ready to be picked up. How wonderful this was. The repair was done quickly and soon I’d “be back on the road”. I guess I couldn’t ask for more. But something happened that made me disappointed in the service. I guess I expected more after all.

10 Actions to Bring Your Team Into Your Confidence Zone

Who cares what your employees say! The opinions of your employees don’t matter. Really. They don’t. You prove this each day by your actions. You continue to leave them in the dark about upcoming actions and decisions that affect them. You do little to address their concerns. Now, they question you. They’re losing faith in you. They don’t believe in your leadership.