Have you ever been on the verge of making a really important decision and had a hugely eventful moment or incident swing your decision one way or another?
Well, that happened to me recently. I was trying to figure out whether I wanted to do business with a new entity and every single interaction I had with this group was shiny. Then during one of my routine checks I encountered an employee who exercised his power to help me make my decision.
I decided that this company would not get my business nor receive an endorsement through my network EVER!
Now I know someone reading this is going to say, “Marta, that’s harsh. Maybe that employee was having a bad day. Or maybe that’s just one bad apple.”
Y’all, this was literally in the top three list of the worse treatments I have received in my professional life. So, I thought I’d try to create something positive out of this ugly incident. Here are five reasons it is critical that you NEVER allow your personal circumstance to cause you to lash out at a potential or current customer while at work.
1. You Don’t Always KNOW who you’re dealing with.
That person you have on the phone could be the owner of your company checking to see how you engage clients. Or the caller could be a huge investor that somehow got routed to you. Always assume that the person you’re dealing with is important and matters to the business because they are and they do.
2. It’s Never Just About You.
Once you put on the uniform or set yourself down in the role of someone who speaks and acts on behalf of a business or organization people don’t just see you. They see the company too especially when you’re on the job site. You should even be careful about wearing company logos when you’re on your personal time because in this digital age, things can get out of hand very quickly.
3. One employee has the power to damage a brand sometimes irreparably.
Y’all remember what happened with Denny’s some years back? There are still people who refuse to eat there because of what went down.
4. There could be real and financial consequences for your momentary bad behavior.
As in you could lose your job and get blacklisted in your industry. All because you lashed out in a moment of frustration.
5. You could land yourself in a confrontation you aren’t really prepared to deal with especially if the customer you pop off on is armed.
We’ve all seen the news. We know that there are some among us who it doesn’t take a lot to set off. Why risk it?
We all have those days when we just don’t feel 100%, but if you can’t maintain a professional decorum we have paid time off and mandated breaks for a reason. Use your time wisely. We all have the opportunity to be ambassadors every time we leave our homes in the morning. Think about that.
As for me and Mister Rude Without Cause, he likely has no idea how badly he messed up, but he sure made a difference that will have some significant impact down the line. I hope his little fit was worth it to him and his company.
Marta C. Youngblood is a writer, education and social entrepreneur based in Lubbock, Texas. For more information on her current projects visit https://about.me/MCyoungblood.