Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Botswana (continued) and Zambia

Putting on the ‘L’ Plates

Today we went out to the Khutse Lodge and received a phenomenal welcome from Revelation, Tips and Flora who are the main people there. In ‘Customer Is King’ I talk about delivering ‘wow’ legendary service and that is what these people do.

Tips took us out with a Kalahari bushman who showed us some of the old ways… Tips then took us on two four-hour game drives… So here I was with my ‘L’ plates on, in Learner mode. And what happened…

Well in Learner mode I feel a bit vulnerable and a bit in awe of the ‘teacher’… I am frightened that my questions will sound naïve and maybe have been asked a thousand times before so I hesitate to ask. And that is, I guess, exactly how many of the delegates at my events must feel sometimes. This was a great reminder to me. And a great lesson in how a graceful teacher can share their knowledge and inspire the listeners.

So a special thanks to Revelation, Tips and Flora at the Khutse Lodge on the edge of the Kalahari.

'Customer Is King' in Lusaka
Lusaka, Zambia was the location for today’s 'Customer Is King' presentation. 70 highly intelligent and engaged people attended at the InterContinental Hotel, including people from Barclays as well as major Zambian businesses that deliver cellphone, broadband, insurance and sugar products.

The great learning point for me came when my belief that
‘for most people our biggest/best customers are our biggest fans and ambassadors who we love to do business with’ was quite rightly challenged.

When your largest customer is a multi-national then when they say ‘Jump’ you are meant to say ‘How high?’. Several people felt that their organisations were vulnerable to the whims of their multi-national customers who can easily switch sources at the slightest whim. Scary stuff.

Lots of discussion about how to make your business more customer-focused, and how to instil ‘that passion and excitement’ in your people. A very animated audience.

Other highlights of the day include finding Glenda clutching an old well-read version of the first edition of ‘Customer Is King’.

My special thanks go to Daisy and Paul from the British Council for making it all happen for their warmth and hospitality.

And 'Bright Marketing' in Zambia
An even better attended event with a patient audience who listened attentively as my voice croaked its way through the event. Again, special thanks to Daisy.

And then...
we visited two primary schools… a very humbling experience
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