When we teach the art of creating long-lasting relationships, we share the attributes of gifting that create those bonds. The one thing we always make clear is that we can accomplish any of these practices with a simple card and a message. Your message is what matters, and sometimes people overlook that your words are also a gift.
Let me show you how two moments in my life last year were marked with single sentences that will forever hold a place in my heart with those people. You can then follow my examples to possibly create some of your own for powerful messaging that will create the strong relationships you’re seeking.
Each year, if you do a little research, you can find countless awards for which you can nominate your business. You might even find some that your leadership team could earn. And if you’re a big enough company, you probably have your own awards that you give every year. Regardless of who is giving the award, being nominated for an honor is a big deal for the nominee.
This was no different for me, as the CEO of a company. I learned that my team had nominated me for a leadership award, and it was truly unexpected. The nomination alone was such an honor.
The time for the award ceremony came and went, and it was just not my time to receive the award. About a week later, we had a team celebration dinner, which was not meant to be about me. I wanted to celebrate them and all we had accomplished. During the dinner, I was presented with a card and a small gift. Inside the card was a single sentence and each team member's signatures. The sentence brought me to tears. It simply said, “You’re still our Inspired Leader of the Year” (*award name changed).
With that, each and every one of those people secured a place in my heart. And when you do that, there’s nothing I wouldn’t do to make sure you’re successful and happy.
It doesn’t take a lot of words to make people feel something powerful. They reminded me of a shared experience we had together. Together, we applied for an award and went through the ceremony and felt all the things you feel about those experiences. And while there was no trophy to take home or award to announce, WE shared excitement. With their statement, I’ll remember them fondly each time I think of that recognition. When I think about the ceremony, I’ll remember them. And when I see them, I’ll always want to go above and beyond for them. We’ve now created a very long-lasting relationship.
Do you have any shared experiences with a customer, team member, or business connection? Jot anything down that comes to mind.
I would describe the award moment as one of the highs I experienced in 2019. On the flip side, I had the unfortunate opportunity to have one of the lowest moments in my life when I learned I had cancer this past year. It was a very short-lived experience, thanks to the experts I have in my corner; however, it was there, and we had to go through it.
One of the things I learned is that so many times people don’t know how to respond when you share this news. They aren’t sure what to do or what to say. But I want to share with you the single line that solidified that this experience would not drag me down.
What you need to know is that I have a sick sense of humor. And while yes, I feel all the emotional things, I don’t like to stay there. It’s part of the reason I have a business where I write cards. I can write you all the nice things but saying them is usually a different story! But that’s for another blog. When I learned that I had to have a kidney removed, my second reaction was – Well, how much does a kidney weigh? I’ve been wanting to lose some weight!
One of my best friends sent me some flowers after I shared the news. The card simply said – “Congratulations on your upcoming weight loss.” I still cry tears of happiness when I think about the difference that line made. Think about it. It left no question that I’d get through this just fine and when I did, I’d be down those pounds I’ve been talking about!! It referenced a POSITIVE future milestone. And not only that, it reminded me that I already set the tone of how this was going to be handled. If I could stay in that space, this would be a breeze.
That’s a person I’ll never be without!
If we put this in a business context, she would be the first person I’d call when I hit that future milestone. I’d be so excited to share that I did, indeed, make that thing happen.
Do you know of any milestones your key contacts are looking to achieve? Or, maybe there is a future milestone that your customers achieve when they use your product or service. What message could you send them to acknowledge their work toward that goal? Just watch what that conversation will do for your relationships!
Now that I’ve shared my moments, can you think of some of your own? Do you have messages that have made a similar impact on you? If you think about those messages, were they referencing a shared experience or a future milestone?
I tell people all the time, if you’re not getting responses to your written messages, you’re doing it wrong. You have the words to create these incredible bonds with people in your space. If you want to bounce those thoughts or ideas off someone, that’s why we’re here to help. Feel free to schedule a conversation by emailing: info@TheExpressory.com