Don’t know if any of you fly a lot. I kind of do – at least of late. At the airport, there is one phrase gate agents of a certain airline sometimes say ( actually proclaim over the loudspeaker) that just crushes me. It’s horrid. It makes me instantly hang my head in depression. It ruins my flight, my day and my mood immediately.
“Our flight is completely full today..”
I’m not a small man; (thankfully not ready for the seatbelt extension just yet) but Lordy, when you hear that phrase, thinking about getting into and sitting in those seats and aisles built for middle schoolers, is now horrid on a grand scale.
I think there are some other horrid phrases agents of many industries say these days that can give that same kind of instant feel of dread and depression.
“OK, let’s see what they did here..”. Are you kidding me? As soon as your client with a question hears “they”, the horridness kicks in: Oh my, you are not in charge. Oh my, I’m gonna have to talk to someone else. Oh my, I’m talking to an idiot with no authority. Oh my, this place is so big, I’m never going to get the answer.
“Can I have your phone number in case we are disconnected?” It’s 2011! The only disconnections are when someone does it on purpose. Your client or prospect is in the horrid zone immediately: Oh please, you want my number to pester me at dinner or in a middle of a meeting to sell me something with your silly outbound program. Oh please, now I’m in your database and all I had was a darn question. Oh great, they have crappy phone systems with disconnect issues, can’t wait to do business with them.
“Mark”, “Mark” , “Mark” Yeah that’s right, my first name. You say my first name more than twice in a conversation on the phone or face to face and a horrid sickness overcomes me and your customers too: Oh I get it, someone trained you to use ” the customer’s first name” often in your calls- that feels genuine! Oh I get it, you are as slick a sale rep as I’ve ever seen – you make me wanna take a shower. Oh I get it, you think using my first name a lot makes us like family or brothers and I will buy your stuff- lol!
The thing about horrid phrases is the emotions they elicit have staying power. They linger. They stick. They can even leave a lasting impression about you or your company as a brand that is as uncomfortable as seat 28B.
Till next time,
Grow The Business.