We have been noticing how everyone in organizations these days can check everyone else’s calendar/ availability. It might be contributing to the meeting mania that seems to be mushrooming; “number of meetings” booked has emerged as the new status symbol. Having a meeting to plan another meeting is now trumped by having a meeting to plan the meeting that is aimed at planning a meeting! But, we recently had one refreshing deviation from the paralysis from analysis method of avoiding a responsible, take-a-stand decision.
We were trying to schedule an hour phone conversation with a very senior leader of a large manufacturing company. His on-the-ball assistant looked at the leader’s calendar for his availability at a requested time and said, “I know he wants to get some time with you, but he has that entire morning blocked out to meet with a group of customers. He wants to get their participation in planning a new product launch.” We later learned it was not a board room meeting; it was an off-site candid discussion. And, he took with him a blank note pad, not a slick PowerPoint deck or sanitized report.
At a time when customers are more powerful than ever before and 79% of customers say they want brands to demonstrate that they care before they will consider a purchase. Devoting a portion of your busy schedule on a regular basis to better know or understand your customers would seem critical.
Customers learn your priority and their importance, not by what you say, but by where you spend your time. What would your customers learn if they could see your calendar?
Check out Chip’s great new post at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/chipbell/2019/07/14/dissonance-fertile-ground-for-great-leaders/#76b017ff52a2