A while back, I spent a wonderful weekend in Saginaw, Michigan, with some really great…
Just when I think I can no longer be amazed, something happens that amaze me even more! Maybe it is just me; I don’t know. Perhaps I have gotten to the age in life where my expectations of people and the way they should be able to operate on a daily basis are unrealistic, but I don’t think so. I know the old saying, “If you want something done right, do it yourself!” This is a first cousin to that concept, but it is a little different!
The only way I can explain this Tip to you is to give you two situations that happened in my life. They will explain my point much better.
Not too long ago our company changed insurance providers. We do this from time to time in order to get the best possible rates. There is a multitude of factors to consider such as premiums, pre-existing conditions, number of family members, and on and on. It is not necessarily a fun process, but it has to be done.
Anyway, I got a new health policy and was able to sign an electronic signature online to finalize it. Over the next few weeks, my insurance agent called me several times to tell me that he had requested my health records four times, but that they would not be released from my physician’s office. He made it a point to tell me that he had called my Doctor’s office four different times and he was just not able to get my records. He asked if I would call and request that the records be sent to the insurance company myself.
I thought it rather odd that he had tried so many times and could not get the records sent even after I had signed all of the forms. When I asked him why they would not release them, he said he had no idea! So, I stopped what I was doing and called my physician’s office to find out what was going on. The girl who answered the phone was very helpful. I was told that medical records could not be released by their office by electronic signatures; a hard copy with my signature was required. So, she faxed me a copy of what I needed to sign. I then signed it, faxed it back, and my records were on the way to my insurance agent that same day!
Now, that may seem like a very simple thing to you, and you may wonder about my point. My point is this: I was able to find out the reason the information was not being released and sent to my insurance agent in a matter of a couple of minutes and he was not able to do it in four different phone calls! He was supposed to be helping me and I was the one helping him. And, here is the crazy part – I was paying him! I was paying for the insurance policy, yet I had to stop what I was doing in order to move the process along. But that is okay; it didn’t surprise me because I know the secret found in this Tip!
I think it goes to the fact that I am a problem-solver, not a problem creator. I am always looking for solutions and ways to make things work better. I was not trying to compound the problem, I was trying to resolve it, bring closure to it and move on in life.
Let me give you one other example to help illustrate this concept.
We once changed our telephone providers at our office and I had to have an on-sight visit with someone from the phone company in order to go over a few issues. The representative called me and made an appointment. We were all set to meet one afternoon at 2 o’clock. At about five minutes till 2:00 on the day of the appointment, I received a phone call from the company representative who asked, “Could you tell me your office location again?” I thought to myself, “I am trying to do business with him and give him money to use his company’s phone service and he does not have directions to my office!” Rather than saying what I was thinking, I politely asked if he had something on which to write down directions. He told me, “Hold on, please,” while he pulled his car to the side of the road in order to write them down. Once again, I had to go over the same information I had already given him in an earlier conversation. I thought to myself, “Wow! This is really amazing. I keep trying to give my money to companies in order to help them succeed and they deal with me on a level that does not seem to be helpful at all. As a matter of fact, I have to keep doing their work for them – as well as pay them!” But that is okay; it didn’t surprise me because I know the secret found in this Tip!
I did not lose my peace or tranquility in either instance, but in neither case should it have been my responsibility to do their job. Yet, they seemed unable or unequipped to do so without my help, even though I was paying for their services. If you would like to be successful it is very easy – just provide good customer service and not make your own work someone else’s responsibility.
I have come to believe that these scenarios are not unusual. They have become increasingly more of the norm in our world rather than the exception. We have a saying around our office that goes like this: “Remember, you have to do your job and everyone else’s, too!” That is not meant to be negative. It just helps add awareness to reality!
Please understand – I am not sharing this Tip with you because I am angry, frustrated or disappointed. I share these examples to help you see that if you want someone to help you, then you should be prepared to do all you can to head off problems before they fall back on you – and when they do – because they will – stay positive and do not act surprised! You were “pre-expecting” to have to get back involved in the process in order to make everything work. Very, very few people get this concept.
Please understand that my happiness and joy is not dependent upon what someone else does or doesn’t do. However, I know that I want to do all I can to help make things easier on other people who are trying to help me. I find that it produces more business and better personal relationships. And, I promise you that you will find those same opportunities if you practice the truth found in this Tip.
Tip: If you want someone to help you, you should be prepared to help them right back!
Have a great week! God bless you!
Dr. Robert A. Rohm