The Double Edged Blade of Charm


Charm is a wonderful thing.

I love a charmer, someone who comes along with a big smile and is eager to help.  That is the best kind of reception that we can receive; if they have a desire to fulfil your desires and expectations.  All of these things are really pleasant to find in your environment.

But there is another side to the charmer’s personality.  They expect you to say yes to their effort.  They are not used to being denied for no other reason but you don’t feel like it.  You are supposed to be polite and accept their effort as cash and feel bad if you say no.  So, we as customers will avoid that guilty feeling of denying effort by saying yes.

That works with lots of people, but not really.  If you leave with the feeling of being taken advantage of you will be an unhappy customer and avoid that store in the future because you don’t like that icky feeling of being used.

So it is important that your best charmers are well trained in being able to take no as an acceptable answer to their charm.

It was quite funny this morning when I was sitting in the coffee shop where I wrote this article and I wasn’t quite ready for anything and a lovely waitress comes up with the full blown charm machine running and asks if I would like a good capuccino or a café au lait in a bowl…I said not yet; and I was briefly reminded of Bilbo’s Gollum moment in the Lord of the Rings:


I think I was momentarily scared…fortunately there were witnesses so I was okay.

But it is to be remembered as the supervisor of the sales force that our clients are more than just tools to fulfil  our objectives.  They need to be listened to and empathised with.  So make sure your charmers leave the clients charmed and not mildly terrified, queasy or guilty.

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Warm when it counts!

Brit and Chips WC

One thing you should know about me is that I am both resilient and fussy. I can spend a week on an icy mountain and complain vociferously when my chair is cold at the house. This is just one example of how context is everything!

But it shows you care when you know what the context is and you think about how to make sure your client is being taken care of. But Aaron what do you mean? Example please!

I went to a fish and chips joint in Montreal with the family and the place was BUSY, there were people coming in and out every 6 seconds and the outside temprature was about -4,000°C outside and the interior temperature was not very warm. But as you may have noticed I had to use the water closet. (Ergo the picture above) and it was tropical! It was great.

Think about this, in what other room in your establishment to you ask your clients to get naked and sit down???

And one thing I have noticed is that most small restaurants like to keep their bathrooms at about freezing! So this was a delightful change.

If you think this is the least used room in your business so you can cut in your budget by keeping the heat low, think again. It is the room where you take people in and host their most intimate needs. So consider this when you are saving money what it is costing the people who have to undergo your icy porcelain challenge.

Ask instead, how can we make the money to cover that cost and not where can we cut that no one will notice; because they always notice.

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