The Importance Of A Smile

Smiles.

So simple and yet so very powerful. They alone have the ability to break through indifference, warm the emotions of others around, and when used at the right time can influence what others will do. Smiles are relatively cheap in comparison and virtually every budget is able to afford as many smiles as you need.

smiling blondeSmiles are one of the most important tools that you will have as both a provider and a leader when dealing with people from all occupations and social classes. Provided that our happiness in life will depend largely on how we interact and manage a connection with others, a sincere smile is the most effective way to establish a relationship and build a rapport and compatibility with others. A smile will maintain the attention of the person you are speaking to, helps boost openness through body language, helps reassure the other person of your attentiveness to what they are trying to communicate, and genuineness at being willing to help or aid them.

Smiles are also a true mood changer. Feeling negatively or being in a bad mood often results in similar body language such as frowns, furrowed brows, scowls, and lower lip biting. Consciously choosing to smile instead of displaying the aforementioned negative characteristics has the power to change the mood of yourself and those around you who may also be having negative feelings. Smiling in these moments will help lift your own spirit, improve your outlook on the situation, and lead you to making positive decisions using good judgment that is no longer tainted by the negative atmosphere.

Want to know the best part about a smile? Everyone has one, including you! Use it to your advantage in reaching your goals with others.

5 Ideas For Celebrating Victories

No matter how small we may think it is, we need to celebrate our victories. Here are 5 ideas for recognizing and commencing that celebration with your providers:

  1. A Written Letter of Commendation from “The Boss – Telling someone they did a good job is important, but taking the time to put it in writing helps increase the value of that message. Not only is it great that they can show their co-workers that you truly value their service, that’s something they can take home and show their friends and family. It can even be something that they display in their home, a source of professional pride, for others to see for years to come
  2. A “Thank You” Card – greeting cards have traditionally been used for close friends and family on special occasions. Isn’t a positive customer service report such an occasion? Don’t you want those who report to you to feel as if they are a part of something bigger, like an extended family? “Thank You” cards can go a long way to deliver that
  3. A Cup of Coffee with “The Boss – It will cost at most $21 (if you go to Starbucks) and 15 minutes of your time and undivided attention to make your Providers feel great about their performance, their career choice, and your Agency. Want to know the funny thing? Your time and undivided attention will often be appreciated more than the coffee…
  4. A Public Posting of Praise – It’s important to be sure that your Providers are recognized among on another. Whether it be a memo, flyer, or copy of the letter of commendation that you’ve written put up on a bulletin board, crew room, or locker room goes a long way to achieve that. It not only provides some recognition for those who have done a good job, but provides some incentive for others to do the same
  5. A Mention In Your Agency’s Social Media Stream – Is your provider on Facebook? Is your agency on Facebook? Hopefully they both are (if you’re agency isn’t, then read this post) and then posting a photo on your Agency’s Facebook Page and tagging your provider in it does two things simultaneously. First, it recognizes the Provider to your Agency’s audience as well as the Provider’s friends and family. Second, it gives your Agency some content for their Social Media Presence. It’s a win-win for all those involved

What does you agency do to celebrate the victories? Let us know in the comments…

Celebrate The Victories

Looking at the organization of a number of EMS Agencies we often see departments dedicated to quality. Whether it be a Quality Assurance, Quality Improvement, or Investigations units we take complaints pretty seriously.

How many of you have ever eaten at a fast food restaurant? Whether it be McDonald‘s, Burger King, Wendy‘s, Taco Bell or any of the countless others you would have had to deal with a cashier at the counter.

How many times have you gone into one of these restaurants, placed an order, paid your money, received back the correct change, and then have the cashier deliver the order correctly on a tray for you to take away and dine on?

Once at the table you see the order is correct, relatively hot, and from a food service perspective you received a good meal. Has that ever happened to you?

Thumb up with good job written on a blackboardIf you answered “Yes” to all three of those questions then please answer this one: Have you ever gone home and written a letter to the manager of that fast food restaurant for the service you received? Have you ever called the manager at the restaurant to commend the cashier for a fine job? Have you, on the way out the door, every stopped to speak to the manager and thank them for the job they and their staff have done for your meal? If you answered “Yes” to any one of those three questions then you are in the absolute vast minority.

Expectation of good service is part of our cultural DNA. There is a sense that it is owed to us for the patronage we provide to the establishment or service provider. When we receive it we think nothing special about it. When we don’t receive it, we make sure the manager or the establishment knows that we were unhappy.

As a society we are quick to complain and reluctant to commend when it comes to service.

When we do get a commendation or positive feedback we need to make sure that we celebrate that just as much, if not more, then when we investigate and discipline for a complaint. We need to put as much focus and energy on the good our providers perform alongside the questionable.

Ask yourself, who handles the good in your organization? If you have a department dedicated to investigations and quality control are they the ones who do it? Is it a function of Human Resources or does your agency have a separate Commendations and Celebrations Unit? If not, then you need to ask who does do it.

If the answer you receive is no one, then it’s time to step up and change that. If you wanted to be a leader, now is your opportunity to become one. If you already are a leader then you’re providers are overdue.

Always celebrate the victories. No matter how small they may seem to you, to those being celebrated it’s a whole lot bigger.