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The Rule Book


I want an ice cream cone. Not a two scooper or what seems like a pint balanced precariously atop a fragile looking sugar cone. I want a kid-sized serving which is still entirely too much but at least it could resemble a portion in proportion. My request for less was denied. At this stand there were no small sizes on the menu and apparently no flexibility in responding to customer requests.

• When are rules really meant to be bent or broken? • What is their purpose after all? • Control?  Uniformity? Simplicity?

It wasn’t a question of cost, as I was willing to pay. It did not seem like a radical request and as a family owned business, isn’t responding to customer feedback important for continued success? Basic business principles would support listening to your patrons and perhaps modifying your method of delivery. So, where is the disconnect?

IS YOUR RULE BOOK WRITTEN IN CONCRETE OR SAND?

If you are a business owner or entrepreneur yourself, how willing are you to look at your operations with fresh eyes? Often times we put systems in place, get them up and running and promptly forget to revisit the process again. We become comfortable and may only pay attention when something breaks down. Is too much “ice cream” making you complacent or do you need to change places and be the client/customer for the day! • How curious are you? • Compose one inquiry that would open up new conversation • Remember, if you ask the question of your client/customer, staff and more, be prepared for the answer and accompanying follow-up

© 2014 Maureen Weisner

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