If you were choosing whether to increase your employees’ satisfaction or their engagement – which would you choose?   Or would you even consider there to be any difference between the two?   Perhaps you’re like some of the employers whom I’ve been talking to recently about this.  They use the two terms interchangeably without having a clear picture of what, if anything, distinguishes them.   Well in strict definition terms there is a difference.  Employee satisfaction is just that – an employee having their needs met in terms of their jobs and work environment.  But satisfied … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan
Comments Off

I was chatting with my son Aidan.  He’s 6 – and thankfully still full of curiosity.   He asked me “Daddy do you think there are aliens?”   “Yep”   “Why?”   “Because there’s a gazillion stars like our sun and at least one of them has to have a planet going around it with something living on it.”   “Do you know what Dad?”   “What son?”   “To the aliens we’re aliens!”   Aidan magically has perspective.  All business owners need it too.  The age of the customer is upon us – customers and potential … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

Today my son happened to be with me when the post arrived.  One of the pieces was a monthly bulletin I get on marketing – from someone who refers to himself as the Evil Bald Genius.   The envelope itself was a good example of direct marketing – it had a real stamp, it used a personal-type font, it had a return address that wasn’t a company, it had a caricature of the Evil Bald Genius (EBG) and it said “your awesome newsletter is inside”.  All these elements helped get it delivered, into the hands of its … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

On July 4th, Independence Day in the world’s oldest republican democracy, it’s appropriate perhaps to have an American theme to the blog.   So – one of my favourite iPhone apps is NPR – America’s National Public Radio. And today I was listening to an NPR story discussing whether Hispanics can ever become supporters in large numbers of the Republican Party.   Opinions are split within the party. Some think it can never happen – and fear the long-term consequence for the Republicans in the state. One of those though who disagrees is Mike Gibson, chairman of … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

Recently I was doing some weeding in my mother’s garden – a garden where my brother-in-law is working on turning some of his fingers green.   Well it transpires I actually wasn’t weeding.  I found this out when my brother-in-law came running over to me telling me in extremely colourful language to leave his carrots alone – the carrots he had lovingly grown from seed!   Now he and I get along very well.  And I’m glad we do – partly because he’s 4 inches taller than me and about 25 lbs heavier!   We got over our … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

When you make a mistake do you try and hide it?  Or maybe jump through hoops in an effort to explain?  Or perhaps offer a conditional apology?   Conditional apologies drive me nuts.   A recent example occurred last week when the Irish Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, was speaking in the Dáil.  (The Dáil is the lower house of Ireland’s legislative branch.)   Minister Shatter said “If Deputy Wallace feels that I did him some personal wrong by mentioning it, then I have no problem in saying I am sorry.”   The deputy in question, Mick … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

On Monday I was in Dublin for meetings with existing and prospective customers.  When the work was finished I took a few minutes to enjoy the sunshine on a park bench in the wonderful St. Stephen’s Green.   I found myself looking at the pigeons.  And they were ALL fat.  (Excuse the poor resolution of the photo – hopefully there’ll be more megapixels on my next phone upgrade!)   But back to the pigeons…   Why were they fat?   It’s obvious – they know where to find food.   And where do they find the food?  Yep – … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

One of LinkedIn’s changes over the past year has been the introduction of endorsements.  If you’ve encountered pop-up suggestions of whom you could endorse and for what, then you’ll know what I mean.  And you’ll also know how easy it is to give these endorsements.   Opinions differ on this – but I do know that some people find the feature very irritating.  They feel that the value and credibility of endorsements is low because the endorsements are being given too freely by people.   For example, if you’ve been endorsed by someone who cannot vouch for … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

My sons were sick yesterday so I took some time off to spend with them. They improved as the day wore on and we ended up outside playing football.   I was in goals and Aidan (6) took a shot which I managed to save. “Great save” I exclaimed. “Self praise is no praise” was his retort. We laughed. I’ve been trying to teach him humility and he had turned the tables.   The incident reminded me of the regularity with which companies and organisations blow their own trumpet – without any basis for so doing.   … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan

Recently I was working with a client who sells a high-value product to consumers and we were reviewing the state of his business.  The review included a look at customer satisfaction – as he seemingly “got” the importance of satisfied customers.   When I probed this with him he told me proudly that it had been 2 years since they had received a complaint.  It wasn’t said smugly – just in a pleased and self-satisfied way.  He took it as an affirmation – and to a degree he was right.   But guess what?  When I probed … Continue reading

Posted on by Brendan