Vision through friends

The coffee was cold, cake a memory and as I prepared to leave the office the mobile sprang to life with text:

‘Just sent you an email, come back to me!’

The number was familiar although ‘nothing current.’ Being curious, I did of course proceed as instructed and checked ‘mail’ anyway.

Hey Charlie, it’s Jackie here!

‘Some of the kids here are with you in spirit, see the attached please and let me know what you think!?’

Now I don’t know about you but whenever I’m engaging an unfamiliar email and being instructed to check the attachment, I’m a little cautious …

Still, I was curious and didn’t ‘bin’ this one but parked it, then dispatched the remainder of the (now ice) coffee and escaped with the boss (dear dog.)

It was some time later I’d recovered from the latest ‘trek’ and approached the kitchen for refreshment once again …

‘Did you get the message from Jackie?’ A distant shout came from Sue.

Memory was restored! ‘Jackie’ was the Carer for an elderley some-time client, someone I catch up with much too sparingly, only occasionally.

I returned to the email and scanning the contents immediately felt more positive about prospects.

The note began:

Hey Charlie, Jackie here, a note from the school front …

We had a sit down with the kids today (six 5 year olds) and we asked them to play along …

‘First we asked them to close their eyes until the count of ten and to think about what they were good at. We also asked the kids to think about where they would like to be when they grow up?’

”As you can imagine, the room erupted with shrieks of enthusiasm and the first hand that shot up I immediately thought of you:’

‘I’m really good at helping people.’ Came the answer from said 5 year old. ‘When I grow up I want to be surrounded by my friends.’

So, why tell me this Jackie?

I needed just a minute before the ‘penny finally dropped’ …

Jackie had been reminded of something by her young companion … something that she and I had discussed many times in the past. We’d talked how Carers needed help just like everyone else. The most helpful of people need their friends and just a little support at times.

Jackie also knew that the network of friends was one of the reasons I enjoyed my business so much and hence she was so taken aback by the youngsters comments, it became the reason she decided to make contact.

Sometimes kids have a great way of enlightening us to some of life’s really important stuff, like the mutual benefits that come through helping friends.

I was happy … my first testimonial of 2017, even if it was from a 5yr old!


Need a little job done…

I picked up the telephone.

Do you know anyone who can help me with a little job I need done?

It was Karen, a friend who helps out with email marketing, a good egg and we enjoy working together.

I know that most of you who know me understand that I’ll help Karen, of course I will. After all, Karen is a good friend, runs a great telephony biz which in turn has been great for me – so I’m going to help her and I’m pleased she has asked me.

Anyway, we’ve all been there, if I can’t help, I’ve some great contacts who can. Right?

The ‘job’ entailed an internal relocation of one of her offices so there was the usual wiring and all sorts of stuff that needed an expert to attend to. An ideal job for ‘Bob.’

‘I’ll get right on it, no problem’ came the reply from Bob. ‘Leave it with me … and thank you for the referral.’

It felt good to have been able to help an old friend and at the same time pass a decent referral. We like to help others don’t we? Anyway, I promptly called Karen to assure her that ‘Bob’ would be in touch and passed his details at the same time, just in case.

A week goes by, ten days and Karen and I meet up for ‘other business’ when I happen to ask:
“How is Bob getting on with the office relocation?”

‘Bob who?’ came the reply. My heart sank.
Oh, that Bob, I’m sorry but I didn’t hear from your guy and after a week it had become urgent – so I had to find someone else – hope Bob is alright?

Now there is no need me explaining that we’d been let down, it seems Karen hadn’t even had a call from ‘Bob the expert’ and I suppose she should have called to chase him up, I should have chased him up to remind him etc, etc. But should we? Really??

But hey, is Bob alright? He could be ill, or had an accident – or worse. Lets just see how right he is I thought to myself as I made a mental note …

It turns out that Bob is fine, just been ‘up to his eyeballs, that’s all’ – so busy being busy he explained and assured me he had every intention of follow up ‘that little job’ once he had the time.

‘No matter Bob.’ I explained that Karen had ‘sorted the office out’ and were now pressing ahead with ‘acquiring’ the adjacent office floor … after their incumbent electrician had given it the once over of course.

‘You just never know where the referral may lead you, do you Bob?’

Failure to follow up, to do as you say – no matter how insignificant it may seem at the time – can not only cost you the business, it can profoundly impact the relationships and dent the hard won credibility – and who needs that in today’s business climate?