I looked at her stomach for a moment. “Congratulations,” I heard myself say to the friendly-looking customer who entered my shop. She turned to me in a flash, looked at me fiercely, and walked right up to me. Suddenly there was no sign of that kindness anymore. Evil eyes peered through me. There was silence for a few seconds, it seemed like minutes. “With what?” she asked sharply. I felt the mood linger and tried to swallow my words, without success. “Well…with your pregnancy,” I said falteringly. "I'm not pregnant," she said menacingly and took a step closer. Suddenly, laughing, I put my hand on her shoulder, looked straight into her eyes, and offered my heartfelt apologies for my misjudgment. A smile appeared on her face, "apologies accepted." phew!
This is one of the common stories I received last week to my question 'What is your biggest store blooper'. These types of bloopers fall under the category of 'errors of judgment'. Mistaking girls for boys, designating one of the two sisters as a mother, addressing men with long hair as a woman. Is this a bug in the brains of sellers? Because sellers are not allowed to make these 'mistakes', right? Or is it just a sign of professionalism?
In my opinion there are no mistakes in communication if the connection comes straight from the heart. How wonderful is it if that genuine spontaneity can be there? The authentic self makes a company powerful and unique. That is where people want to go. Bloopers bring people closer together (including salespeople and customers). So sellers, make as many mistakes as possible, straight from your heart! That will make your customers happy!
ps. does this blog make you angry or irritated? Check your brain for a bug, a good first step to closer to yourself!
Oh yeah, and CEOs and managers? Give your people the space and freedom to make 'mistakes'! That really makes the numbers greener!