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If you are going to bow, then bow deeply
Sat 23-Jan-10
11:53 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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There are many old sayings that I think are a load of cobblers, but this old Chinese one is a worthwhile attitude that I recommend to anybody who finds themselves in a situation where there is a need to apologise or grovel.

I sell stuff online as a small sideline mini-business and, occasionally, things do go wrong. Inevitably, it always seems to be with the smallest value orders.

I receive a complaint, usually about late delivery, and I have a mental rant – like recently, with the prolonged cold spell in the UK, we have had icy roads that meant that the major courier firms would not deliver to small villages where the roads were not salted. I explain to all my customers but one will have a rant back at me.

How do you react?

Now I have learned to be ultra cool and ultra generous. I apologise reasonably profusely and give a refund for the goods or double the quantity they ordered.

I bow deeply.

Mostly it works. Not always, but mostly.

I highly recommend it as a technique for personal life also, although personal stuff can be far more difficult to concede.

Anybody else agree or disagree?

Never knowingly underfed

Sun 24-Jan-10
3:15 am
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Michelle from Oregon
Oregon, USA

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I am with you Danny, 100%.

I have a phrase I use when things don't go as smoothly as I would like on a project and everyone starts looking for someone to point a finger at.

"I accept the blame and embrace it as my own". The key is to say it without scarcasm.Laugh

It is funny how when someone will step up and simply say "yes, its my fault", even if its not, everyone can get on with life and move on.

I think that people find it so refreshing to find someone that is willing to step up instead of backing away and pointing at someone else. Not to mention that it also confounds them a little too!

And the ones that keep pushing? Sorry, they are looking for someone to punish, someone to hold to a impossible level that no one can reach, someone that they can weild power over since they have so little power in their own lives. Steam

If you can't be a shining example, be a terrible warning!

Sun 24-Jan-10
7:58 am
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JoannaS
Latvia

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Mon 21-Sep-09
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Just to encourage you Danny, I am the sort of person that if someone says they are sorry or gives a reasonable explanation about why something is late then I am more than happy to shop with them again Big_Hug. Unconcern and ranting back will ensure that I never shop there again.

I'm not very good at saying Sorry, a work in progress. Whistle

I am hoping that the chaos in England is the reason that only two of my 8 books that I ordered the 2nd January have arrived, a week apart. Only one of my course books and one just for general reference Cry

Sun 24-Jan-10
12:24 pm
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SOL
UK

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Mon 21-Sep-09
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s=books&qid=1264335349&sr=1-1

s=books&qid=1264335349&sr=1-2

I use these 2 books at work.

Maybe add a clause on your postage and packaging terms and conditions.  To say that you will endeavour to post within x amount of time.  Due to weather conditions and postal strikes, this may longer.  Please contact me on.....  Where I will be able to give you an estimated time of arrival.  and if they want to have it there the next day, offer special delivery.  Costs alot, but if it is a present is defo worth it.

I am like Joanne keep me informed where my package is at, and I am happy.  if they go for special delivery give them the number and they can see where it is on route.  Makes me HAPPY to be offered choice.Ok

Sun 24-Jan-10
9:26 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Sat 12-Aug-06
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Michelle: Your phrase "I accept the blame and embrace it as my own" is one that I must mull over. Not the sentiment, just the wording. I, too, work on projects as the PM and I accept that the buck stops with me. Problem is that (a) say it too often and management may begin to think that I am incompetent (b) I believe that a good manager always looks inwards and accepts that the fault lies with him/her even if the cause was genuinely obviously with that X$j&!#* over there. Learning curves, risk management and all that.

Joanna: I love your honest self-assessment! Re the books, I reckon that the icy conditions are a valid reason, but all has been clear for several days now so if they have not been dispatched by Monday (tomorrow) I reckon a reminder email to the vendor is quite in order.

S.O.L: I love the concept that those book(s) expound upon. Good communication eases an awful lot of issues but it can take time. Time that can be used to pack more orders and ease the backlog, for example. It can be a judgement call at times. Like your idea about an express delivery option. I may consider that.

Excellent feedback, Thak you all. Ok

Never knowingly underfed

Mon 25-Jan-10
2:16 pm
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brightspark
Wilts

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Wed 30-Dec-09
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Bonjour - Je suis en France!

Having read through these thoughts I feel that communication is at the heart of this.

In personal lifel, as well as business life, keeping others informed whether it is going in the wrong direction or not will hopefully prevent any bad feeling that may build up.

It happens all the time, so, in a way, I understand Michelle's thoughts - and that is to stop something becoming out of hand - and as early as possible.

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
Mon 25-Jan-10
8:08 pm
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JoannaS
Latvia

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I got some very prompt feedback from the book company but they recommended that I try the local sorting office to see if they have it Doh. It is such a small place that I have known the postman deliver post to our flat we are living in because he knew there was no one in at the other flat we own - we can do nothing without the whole village knowing (well it feels like it, that is what comes of being a small minority of ex-pats in a small place)WhistleWhistle

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