Brad Domitrovich

PR Zealot, Speaker, Educator

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The little things … 
With the start of school a week away, everybody is busy. When we’re busy, it’s easy to forget good customer service habits. Remembering the little things keeps us focused. What are the little things? Words like: “Please”, “Thank you”, “Sorry for the inconvenience”. These are oh so simple to say, but very much appreciated but both our internal and external customers.

These little things cost us absolutely nothing, take very little effort (except to remember), and make big points with our customers – especially if they are angry. This week, remember the smallest things. Our customers will notice. Our customers will appreciate it. Our customers will say “Thank you” to us. That’s great customer service!

The little things … 

With the start of school a week away, everybody is busy. When we’re busy, it’s easy to forget good customer service habits. Remembering the little things keeps us focused. What are the little things? Words like: “Please”, “Thank you”, “Sorry for the inconvenience”. These are oh so simple to say, but very much appreciated but both our internal and external customers.

These little things cost us absolutely nothing, take very little effort (except to remember), and make big points with our customers – especially if they are angry. This week, remember the smallest things. Our customers will notice. Our customers will appreciate it. Our customers will say “Thank you” to us. That’s great customer service!

Filed under BradDomitrovich SchoolPR CustomerService

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We’re back in the saddle again ….
Wow! Where did the summer go? Isn’t it hard to believe that the 2014-2015 school year is right around the corner? As we look at everything that still has to be accomplished before that first day of school arrives, never forget that this is the time that our customer service level needs to be at its very best.
The first impressions that we make are so vital. Research shows that when we meet somebody for the first time, we make eleven major decisions about one another within the first seven seconds together. Making a good first impression is incredibly important. Why? Because we only get one opportunity to make one. 
What can you do to improve your first impression rating? Take time today to examine yourself. Do a personal audit on how you, as well as your operations, are perceived from the outside. What will people notice about us? Usually its our attitude, our body language, and our facial expressions. What will people notice about our surroundings?
Your customers will be judging you, your school, or your district based on first impressions. Those impressions and opinions may never, ever change. So, are first impressions lasting impressions? It’s worth giving each new encounter your best shot.

We’re back in the saddle again ….

Wow! Where did the summer go? Isn’t it hard to believe that the 2014-2015 school year is right around the corner? As we look at everything that still has to be accomplished before that first day of school arrives, never forget that this is the time that our customer service level needs to be at its very best.

The first impressions that we make are so vital. Research shows that when we meet somebody for the first time, we make eleven major decisions about one another within the first seven seconds together. Making a good first impression is incredibly important. Why? Because we only get one opportunity to make one. 

What can you do to improve your first impression rating? Take time today to examine yourself. Do a personal audit on how you, as well as your operations, are perceived from the outside. What will people notice about us? Usually its our attitude, our body language, and our facial expressions. What will people notice about our surroundings?

Your customers will be judging you, your school, or your district based on first impressions. Those impressions and opinions may never, ever change. So, are first impressions lasting impressions? It’s worth giving each new encounter your best shot.

Filed under BradDomitrovich PRZealot CustomerService Back-to-school

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TASB Summer Leadership Institute
If you are in San Antonio or Fort Worth for TASB’s Summer Leadership Institutes, I hope you attend one of the three workshops I will be presenting.
Customer Service is Everyone’s Job!
Thursday, 3:15 PM (6/19 in SAT, 6/26 in FW)
Board members and administrators know that community support is contingent upon the way public schools are perceived. What makes people proud of their schools? What type of message does district staff send when it comes to dealing with their customers? This workshop looks at the importance of customer service and explores key strategies such as: attitude, personality, image, and rapport building. You’ll leave realizing that great customer service is a choice … a choice every district should make.
The Clarity of the Message
Friday, 11:15 AM (6/20 in SAT, 6/27 in FW)
How clear is your message? How important is it to get your district’s message across? Every school district has a story to tell and our communities want to hear all about them. How you communicate the message with your stakeholders is equally as important as what you communicate. From planning and listening, to trustworthiness and media relations, you’ll learn that the messages you send should be a planned effort that keeps everyone focused and on target.
A School District Guide to Successful Media Relations
Saturday, 10:00 AM (6/21 in SAT, 6/28 in FW)
Building a great relationship with the media is vital for every school district. How do you do it? There are unique challenges that exist in every market with every type of media outlet. It’s important to promote your district to reporters in a positive, consistent, and credible manner. Using topical examples, participants will be led through a study on how the media influences the public’s perspective on education and what strategies you can use to be successful.

TASB Summer Leadership Institute

If you are in San Antonio or Fort Worth for TASB’s Summer Leadership Institutes, I hope you attend one of the three workshops I will be presenting.

Customer Service is Everyone’s Job!

  • Thursday, 3:15 PM (6/19 in SAT, 6/26 in FW)
  • Board members and administrators know that community support is contingent upon the way public schools are perceived. What makes people proud of their schools? What type of message does district staff send when it comes to dealing with their customers? This workshop looks at the importance of customer service and explores key strategies such as: attitude, personality, image, and rapport building. You’ll leave realizing that great customer service is a choice … a choice every district should make.

The Clarity of the Message

  • Friday, 11:15 AM (6/20 in SAT, 6/27 in FW)
  • How clear is your message? How important is it to get your district’s message across? Every school district has a story to tell and our communities want to hear all about them. How you communicate the message with your stakeholders is equally as important as what you communicate. From planning and listening, to trustworthiness and media relations, you’ll learn that the messages you send should be a planned effort that keeps everyone focused and on target.

A School District Guide to Successful Media Relations

  • Saturday, 10:00 AM (6/21 in SAT, 6/28 in FW)
  • Building a great relationship with the media is vital for every school district. How do you do it? There are unique challenges that exist in every market with every type of media outlet. It’s important to promote your district to reporters in a positive, consistent, and credible manner. Using topical examples, participants will be led through a study on how the media influences the public’s perspective on education and what strategies you can use to be successful.

Filed under BradDomitrovich TASB SLI TASBSLI SchoolPR

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Receiving your degree in customer service
Good customer service is a skill. It’s a skill that can always be improved upon with practice, by watching other people, and even by reading quick messages like this one. Over this past year, 35 customer service messages were sent out. 36 if you count today’s. Which one do you remember? Which one gave you a better insight into how we can better serve our customers?
To me, one of my favorites was was one that went out in February “Never forget that co-workers are customers too”. Maintaining amiable relationships with coworkers makes for a much more enjoyable workplace environment. Just as we should do whatever it takes to satisfy an external customer, we should always make sure our co-workers are rated #1.
This will be my last weekly customer service message for a while. Consider this one a graduation message! Just like our students, it’s time to take a break. Even though there is work to be done over the summer months, it’s a different kind of work. Enjoy your time off if you get any. Remember: the first day of the 2014-2015 school year will be here before you know it!
Planning summer time in-service? 
Please visit my web site to explore the listing of keynotes and workshops that I have available. Workshops are available on customer service, media relations, crisis communications, and school PR.

Receiving your degree in customer service

Good customer service is a skill. It’s a skill that can always be improved upon with practice, by watching other people, and even by reading quick messages like this one. Over this past year, 35 customer service messages were sent out. 36 if you count today’s. Which one do you remember? Which one gave you a better insight into how we can better serve our customers?

To me, one of my favorites was was one that went out in February “Never forget that co-workers are customers too”. Maintaining amiable relationships with coworkers makes for a much more enjoyable workplace environment. Just as we should do whatever it takes to satisfy an external customer, we should always make sure our co-workers are rated #1.

This will be my last weekly customer service message for a while. Consider this one a graduation message! Just like our students, it’s time to take a break. Even though there is work to be done over the summer months, it’s a different kind of work. Enjoy your time off if you get any. Remember: the first day of the 2014-2015 school year will be here before you know it!

Planning summer time in-service? 

Please visit my web site to explore the listing of keynotes and workshops that I have available. Workshops are available on customer service, media relations, crisis communications, and school PR.

Filed under BradDomitrovich CustomerService SchoolPR

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Working with interruptions …
Interruptions at work are a daily occurrence. How we deal with those interruptions plays an important role in what our level of customer service is capable of becoming. Interruptions can disturb our focus or thought process. As customer service providers, its important to be able to multitask. 
Prioritize and set a timetable for yourself. Customer contact is usually at its peak first thing in the morning and at the end of the day. You may have ten tasks that need your attention today. Categorize them in order of importance and urgency. Begin punching out your list once the rush of customer contacts lessens. Making a dent as soon as you can frees up the time you need to deal with your customers at the end of the day.
E-mails can drain away your time if you don’t watch it. Instead of keeping your e-mail open all the time and responding to them instantaneously, set fixed times during the day to check and respond to e-mails. You will find that keeping such a system will provide more time for you to accomplish those items on that task list.
How do you deal with interruptions? Do you have any other suggestions? As you go through the week, take time to focus on ways to make interruptions work for you, instead of against you.

Working with interruptions …

Interruptions at work are a daily occurrence. How we deal with those interruptions plays an important role in what our level of customer service is capable of becoming. Interruptions can disturb our focus or thought process. As customer service providers, its important to be able to multitask. 

Prioritize and set a timetable for yourself. Customer contact is usually at its peak first thing in the morning and at the end of the day. You may have ten tasks that need your attention today. Categorize them in order of importance and urgency. Begin punching out your list once the rush of customer contacts lessens. Making a dent as soon as you can frees up the time you need to deal with your customers at the end of the day.

E-mails can drain away your time if you don’t watch it. Instead of keeping your e-mail open all the time and responding to them instantaneously, set fixed times during the day to check and respond to e-mails. You will find that keeping such a system will provide more time for you to accomplish those items on that task list.

How do you deal with interruptions? Do you have any other suggestions? As you go through the week, take time to focus on ways to make interruptions work for you, instead of against you.

Filed under BradDomitrovich CustomerService SchoolPR Interruptions

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Living today with a happy attitude …
Is there any reason why today won’t be the best possible day for you and every person you come in contact with? One of the things we have control of is our attitude towards this day. If you expect nothing but the best today, than the best is what you will receive. Our best attitude is what customers are expecting today. Our best attitude helps us cultivate meaningful relationships. Our best attitude helps us generate positive engagement with our co-workers. Our best attitude can delight each and every one of our customers. 
Treating people kindly is not something new. The school business is a people business. When people feel that they are being treated well, chances are your day will run smoothly and efficiently. It all happens because you have an attitude that is happy, and it shows.

Living today with a happy attitude …

Is there any reason why today won’t be the best possible day for you and every person you come in contact with? One of the things we have control of is our attitude towards this day. If you expect nothing but the best today, than the best is what you will receive. Our best attitude is what customers are expecting today. Our best attitude helps us cultivate meaningful relationships. Our best attitude helps us generate positive engagement with our co-workers. Our best attitude can delight each and every one of our customers. 

Treating people kindly is not something new. The school business is a people business. When people feel that they are being treated well, chances are your day will run smoothly and efficiently. It all happens because you have an attitude that is happy, and it shows.

Filed under BradDomitrovich Attitude SchoolPR

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Remember … the customer is always right …
In business, no matter how unreasonable or angry a customer may seem, in principle the customer is always right. In the school business, our customer is king as well. Customers are the people we provide our service to. It is always vital for us to do our best so that each customer experiences the finest service and receives maximum satisfaction.

It doesn’t matter if the customer is a parent, a community member, a student, or a fellow employee - top notch customer service is what we need to deliver. It’s especially important as we wind down during this very busy month. Keep smiling, make the customers your priority, and remember that our customers are king.

Remember … the customer is always right …

In business, no matter how unreasonable or angry a customer may seem, in principle the customer is always right. In the school business, our customer is king as well. Customers are the people we provide our service to. It is always vital for us to do our best so that each customer experiences the finest service and receives maximum satisfaction.

It doesn’t matter if the customer is a parent, a community member, a student, or a fellow employee - top notch customer service is what we need to deliver. It’s especially important as we wind down during this very busy month. Keep smiling, make the customers your priority, and remember that our customers are king.

Filed under BradDomitrovich SchoolPR CustomerService

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Step up your game …
I’m sure you’ve heard this expression before. So many times we hear it in a sporting situation … “that player sure needs to step it up!” In that connotation, it seems like its a negative expression. How does it become a positive affirmation?
When we think about our work in the school business, we all know that May is one of those months that at times tries our patience. All those end of year events: exams, graduations, class parties, concerts, playoffs … the list goes on and on. When times gets hectic, people (including ourselves) may become more abrupt, sassy, presumptuous, and even disrespectful. 
When it comes to customer service, all of us need to step back, take a deep breath, and remember those simple things that will guarantee an easy way to step up our game. Our Five Rules for Great Customer Service provides us with a benchmark that is always useful and timely, especially during the month of May.
Rule #1 – Keep customers the priority.
Rule #2 – Over-deliver when possible. 
Rule #3 – Offer choices. 
Rule #4 – Be access-approachable. 
Rule #5 – Use logic not emotion.
I am going to take time and review these a lot this month. I know that I may slip from time to time, but I’m always going to go back to the basics to keep my customers happy. Deciding to step up my game is a choice I’m going to take seriously. How about you?

Step up your game …

I’m sure you’ve heard this expression before. So many times we hear it in a sporting situation … “that player sure needs to step it up!” In that connotation, it seems like its a negative expression. How does it become a positive affirmation?

When we think about our work in the school business, we all know that May is one of those months that at times tries our patience. All those end of year events: exams, graduations, class parties, concerts, playoffs … the list goes on and on. When times gets hectic, people (including ourselves) may become more abrupt, sassy, presumptuous, and even disrespectful. 

When it comes to customer service, all of us need to step back, take a deep breath, and remember those simple things that will guarantee an easy way to step up our game. Our Five Rules for Great Customer Service provides us with a benchmark that is always useful and timely, especially during the month of May.

  • Rule #1Keep customers the priority.
  • Rule #2Over-deliver when possible
  • Rule #3Offer choices
  • Rule #4Be access-approachable
  • Rule #5Use logic not emotion.

I am going to take time and review these a lot this month. I know that I may slip from time to time, but I’m always going to go back to the basics to keep my customers happy. Deciding to step up my game is a choice I’m going to take seriously. How about you?

Filed under BradDomitrovich SchoolPR CustomerService SteppingUp

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No problem.
During the past week, I’ve had a lot of problems. My biggest problem was with the use of the phrase “no problem”. For those of you that know me, one of my biggest pet peeves is when people say “no problem” … especially in a simple customer service setting.
At the coffee shop … CLERK: Here’s your order. ME: Thank you! CLERK: No problem. ME: Ugh!
At the grocery store … CLERK: Here’s your receipt, you saved $3.42 today. ME: Thanks! CLERK: No problem. ME: Double ugh, but thinking what an effort it was to rip the receipt from the cash register and hand it to me!
At the restaurant … WAITER: Here you are, one sweet tea. ME: Thank you. WAITER: No problem. ME: No response, but thinking about what an effort it was to actually bring me exactly what I ordered!
How did such simple things become a “problem” in the first place? Is “no problem” a big problem in the customer service world? When you think about it, the phrase contains two negatives. Good customer service tells us that we should never say “no” to a customer and that a customer should never be considered a “problem”.
I am going to spend some time this week making a concerted effort not to use the phrase “no problem” in all those simple conversations. Instead, I’m going to try to say some of the other stand-by phrases like:
“you’re welcome”
“my pleasure”
“certainly”
or “glad to help”.
I am going to save “no problem” for the really big stuff.
Stuck on t​he highway … ME: Thank you for stopping and helping me change my flat tire. STRANGER: “No problem”. ME: Thinking, this guy  was all right!
Have a great week ahead. Thank you. You’re welcome.

No problem.

During the past week, I’ve had a lot of problems. My biggest problem was with the use of the phrase “no problem”. For those of you that know me, one of my biggest pet peeves is when people say “no problem” … especially in a simple customer service setting.

  • At the coffee shop … CLERK: Here’s your order. ME: Thank you! CLERK: No problem. ME: Ugh!
  • At the grocery store … CLERK: Here’s your receipt, you saved $3.42 today. ME: Thanks! CLERK: No problem. ME: Double ugh, but thinking what an effort it was to rip the receipt from the cash register and hand it to me!
  • At the restaurant … WAITER: Here you are, one sweet tea. ME: Thank you. WAITER: No problem. ME: No response, but thinking about what an effort it was to actually bring me exactly what I ordered!

How did such simple things become a “problem” in the first place? Is “no problem” a big problem in the customer service world? When you think about it, the phrase contains two negatives. Good customer service tells us that we should never say “no” to a customer and that a customer should never be considered a “problem”.

I am going to spend some time this week making a concerted effort not to use the phrase “no problem” in all those simple conversations. Instead, I’m going to try to say some of the other stand-by phrases like:

  • you’re welcome”
  • my pleasure”
  • certainly”
  • or “glad to help”.

I am going to save “no problem” for the really big stuff.

  • Stuck on t​he highway … ME: Thank you for stopping and helping me change my flat tire. STRANGER: “No problem”. ME: Thinking, this guy  was all right!

Have a great week ahead. Thank you. You’re welcome.

Filed under BradDomitrovich SchoolPR CustomerService

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Taking pride in your work …
People who take pride in their work are usually the kind of people who aspire to perform every assignment they do at a very high level of proficiency. When we take pride in our work we see our work as being something valuable, not only to us, but to the entire organization. Many of us take the time in our everyday jobs to look for ways to accomplish tasks better and sometimes in more original ways. Many of us do what we do not just for a paycheck, but because we love what we do.
Customer service is all about taking pride in our work. It’s about taking pride in assisting our customers: from parents to students and co-workers to community members. It’s about taking pride in that next phone call we take, that e-mail we write, or personal contact we make.
What’s your plan for today? What’s your plan for this week? Let’s take pride in everything that we do. Everyone will notice, especially our customers.

Taking pride in your work …

People who take pride in their work are usually the kind of people who aspire to perform every assignment they do at a very high level of proficiency. When we take pride in our work we see our work as being something valuable, not only to us, but to the entire organization. Many of us take the time in our everyday jobs to look for ways to accomplish tasks better and sometimes in more original ways. Many of us do what we do not just for a paycheck, but because we love what we do.

Customer service is all about taking pride in our work. It’s about taking pride in assisting our customers: from parents to students and co-workers to community members. It’s about taking pride in that next phone call we take, that e-mail we write, or personal contact we make.

What’s your plan for today? What’s your plan for this week? Let’s take pride in everything that we do. Everyone will notice, especially our customers.

Filed under BradDomitrovich CustomerService SchoolPR