The Broken Email Activity

Communication is the key to all successful relationships whether in the family, community, at work or with customers.

Telling employees they need to communicate should be a no-brainer. They either do it or they don't.  But the simplest of things often trip us up and then the team needs a little reminder about improving the communication between their colleagues or customers.

This simple activity is designed to help improve communication awareness and can be used in several situations during training courses, team meetings, breakout sessions, and workshops.

The original idea for this activity comes from Teampedia.

Objectives

  • To be the first team to correctly reproduce the "email".
  • To open up discussions around communication and collaboration.

Group Size

  • Medium to large.
  • Minimum of 5 people.

Materials

Table, Paper, Pens or Markers, Simple Images

Set Up

On a table, place as many pieces of paper with a pen as you have teams. Have pre-made simple images or "emails" made...

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Why Your Business Needs a "Signature Dish" Like This

a.o.k cex wow Nov 12, 2018

I know of a great place to eat that does the most amazing steak and ale pies, The Weighbridge Inn situated in the beautiful Cotswolds between Nailsworth and Avening. They've been serving these pies for over 40 years.

It’s a quintessentially English country pub, ‘old fashioned’ in its style and ambiance with roaring log fires to welcome you in the winter. Muddy boots, dogs and children are all welcome.

The Inn is renowned in the area for its wonderful 2-in-1 pies (half steak and mushroom, half cauliflower cheese). Created over forty years ago, this unique dish remains a firm favourite for all of its customers. The recipe has never been made public and to this day remains a closely guarded secret passed from landlord to landlord. If you ever travel close by, I recommend you call in and try them for yourself. Yum, you will not be disappointed!

These pies have become their ‘signature’ dish. They make them so well that they have been able to draw in...

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How to Turn a Disaster into a Great Customer Experience

a.o.k cex wow Nov 12, 2018

Car dealers have received some pretty poor press over the years and perhaps rightly so. But there are examples of businesses that now demonstrate great examples of how to WOW their customers.

One of our favourite brands and clients found within the retail automotive sector is the Sytner Group, part of US giant the United Automotive Group. The Sytner Group was founded by Frank Sytner in 1960′s and has become the most successful premium brand dealer group in the UK. The Group aim is “To be famous for delighting customers, employees, manufacturers and shareholders”, which has been their driving ambition since it first came into being in 2001.

Image courtesy of Sytner Sheffield

One of my favourite customer WOW stories was shared to me by Peter Mitchell who at the time was Assistant Bodyshop Manager of Sytner’s dealership in Sheffield. Peter shared his story of how he WOW’d one of his customers.

The customer had just taken delivery of a new BMW and within a...

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Discovering Your Brand's Emotional Footprint

If your business was a shoe how would it feel to walk in?

Would it be tight and pinch you?

Does it have awkward characteristics that rub and irritate customers?

Are some transactions awkward and painful to experience?

Understanding where the PinchPoints® are found is key to smoothing the experience for your customers and encouraging repeat business.

As the saying goes....

Only the wearer knows where the shoe pinches.

The Emotional Footprint

Your business has a unique feel to it.

We call this your Emotional Footprint®.

It's what the experience feels like to be a customer or an employee. Understanding the Emotional Footprint® you are creating is important as it can be used to understand what needs to be changed within the experience in order to create a positive and loyalty building engagement with your brand.

Once you understand how emotional connections drive people to your business or brand, and then make the necessary adjustments to the experience they have...

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15 Ways to Make Your Courses and Workshops More Engaging

After over 25 years working in training and development, I've experienced hundreds of different techniques applied in teaching, training, and facilitation. I've experimented with dozens myself and over time have come to learn some key methods for ensuring our workshops are engaging, effective, enjoyable and repeatedly deliver their learning objectives

So to celebrate St Crispins Day (the date we ran our first Customer's Shoes event) I've compiled a list of 15 essential approaches for delivering an engaging workshop. 

How many of these do you experience in the courses delivered by your training providers?

1. Relate the Lessons To Real-Life Scenarios

Often using an example outside of the industry participants work in, helps to illustrate a point just as well as when it relates to their own field. The key, however, is in making it relevant to the real-life scenario in which their learning can be applied. The easier it is for...

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If It's Good Enough for Brain Surgery, It's Good Enough for Your Profession Too

It is not the strongest that survives, 
nor the most intelligent, but the one 
most responsive to change.
Charles Darwin

 

A Clash of Beliefs

This post is essentially about one man's view why fashion design cannot be taught online and one woman's view why it can! 

For anyone interested in understanding the potential for online learning in their profession or business this post will give you confidence that learning outside of the classroom has finally reached a point where it's recognised as being an effective tool.

The post came about through the work we are doing with online learning platforms weteachfashion.com and thefashionstudenthub.com

I had an exchange of comments on LinkedIn by someone describing themselves as a 'Creative Catalyst' who vehemently held a belief that there was no place for teaching fashion design online.

His view was that it is impossible to teach fashion design online and that anyone or any organisation that was adopting this approach...

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How to Make Franchise Training Engaging and Effective

In this post, we discuss some of the challenges franchise holders when it comes to training franchisees. We'll give you some tips on where to start and where to get further support.

Here's what's covered in the post:

  1. Challenges You Face
  2. Who Needs Training
  3. General Approach to Your Training and Development Path
  4. Offering Different Learning Approaches
  5. Blended Learning Approach to Franchise training
  6. Six Training Trends to Be Mindful of for Your Franchise Training
  7. Free Consultation

Challenges You Face

Your role as a franchisor is to build your brand and grow it successfully following the ambitions, vision, and purpose you established when you first embarked upon this format of trading.

You’ve entered into a way of doing business that gives you much control but also leaves you open to the limitations of your franchisees. It's only through adequate training will you be able to deliver on that vision and grow your business.

Here are some of the key challenges you...

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Our Experience of Going From Face to Face Training to Online Delivery and What We Used

In 2001 we embarked upon our first journey into online learning with a membership site targeting the automotive sector, car dealers in particular. This was pre-Facebook and YouTube and social media wasn't even on the agenda and WordPress... that wasn't going to be released for another two years.

We invested in developing a bespoke platform that allowed us to continually add content and online courses with all manner of benefits and features for the end users using our own content management system (CMS.) We had a crude (by today's standards) course creation editor, quizzes and learning logs for users.

Everything was coded and created from scratch. It took months to develop and cost us a small fortune. The product was sold either as a membership offer with a small monthly fee or as a white-label package allowing businesses to brand it as their own for use by their employees or partners. It was a gamble but thankfully we achieved a respectable ROI.

That was then.

...

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Training Your Franchisees to Bring Home the Results You Both Need

If your business model is based upon franchising your business then you'll know just how important franchisee results are. Without their success, you fail!

Any competent franchise will be offering relevant and comprehensive training across the board. In this post, we're summarising the key areas that franchisors need to pay attention to in order to build a worthwhile suite of training options that support their franchisees.

A franchisor training program is one of the major benefits of franchising. It lets franchisees acquire skills rapidly through the initial training program, and then gives on-site and ongoing training to reinforce those skills. It's a major selling point so it needs to deliver on its promise.

 

Franchisee training enables franchisors to ensure consistent delivery of their brand promise and customer experience from site to site regardless of the market.

 

General Approaches to Training Your Franchisees

1. The Operations Manual

Creating an operations...

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How to Turn Your Book into an Online Course

books online courses Sep 22, 2018

Do you have a business book published or one in the making? Have you got a manuscript that you have finished but never got around to actually publishing it? Would you like to generate extra income from the content of your business book?

Well in this post I share with you some advice on how to take your business book and turn it into an online course and use this to generate extra income.

Creating a course is a way of “repurposing content”, to recycle something already written in a different format so that you can squeeze additional income out of the same piece of work. 

If done well it can be highly profitable for the author.

There are numerous ways to repurpose your book content and build upon your expertise and experience. For example:

  • Selling related services.
  • Selling software relevant to the topic including apps.
  • Consulting / Coaching on the topic of your book.
  • Speaking at events.
  • Facilitating workshops on your book's topic.
  • Creating and selling an online...
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