28 Oct Power and Benefits of Self Created Solutions

ray-s-favorite-toysDo you know what my seven-year old son’s favorite toys are?

Not the expensive ones we have purchased for him; it’s a set of Angry Birds that he made himself with toilet paper rolls and some help from his mom.

The more you are able to turn your day-to-day work into an act of creation, the happier you will be. It will also make you a more effective and engaged team member.

Things that we make ourselves have much more value than things that are made for us; and things that we create with others have the most value of all.

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Asking the right question:

For example, at Qualifirst, I ask my sales people to ask themselves the following question: “Does my customer (a restaurant or food store) have a passion? Do they want to sell the best products at the best price or do they simply want to sell the best-marketed products? Marketing is included in the price of the product after all.

When I speak to end customers I ask them, “What will make you buy a product?” I ask them which has more impact and value: a handwritten note, from the proprietor of a small store that explains how the product can be best used and enjoyed; or a glossy “shelf talker” printed by a large corporation.

A small store can start to get an edge over the larger competition by using a customized, self-made shelf talker note. What excuse do they have not to do it?

In a similar vein, I ask restaurant goers, “What inspires you more: the daily special handwritten on a blackboard, or the featured “specials of the month” printed on a glossy “featured items” sheet? Many restaurant patrons have told me they feel a better sense of connection when an establishment creates the daily menu by hand.

For people who work as part of a warehouse team, office team or frankly, any other team, I ask the question, “What is better? A solution that has been handed out to you, or a solution that you, yourself, have helped create, along with other members of your team?

More appealing and more effective:

The self-created solution, even if it appears simpler and less slick than the manufactured ones, is often better, more appealing and more effective, because it was personally created with others. This is the solution that tends to get used.

I ask all of my team members at Qualifirst to always be on the lookout for how they can create something with their team members and with our customers. I ask them to picture themselves working in an ever-more engaging environment – because that’s the one that they themselves are able to create.

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