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At any given moment, approximately 400 catch phrases are circulating
on the web.
You don't need any actual wit to adopt one. Even if you're
not up on the latest gags,
you can always fall back on these standbys:
"I, for one, welcome our new overlords."
First, it establishes you as a hipster and wry lover of textual
Secondly, these jokes sometimes appear to the casual observer
to be making a keen satirical point.
belong to us" is a tempting catch phrase, but resist.
This phrase will
mark you as dated and out of touch, at least until November 2008,
the phrase will become meta-ironically hip.
I have a friend for whom this is a real pet peeve. I also have an associate who teaches customer service training, and agrees that "no problem" is, in fact, a big problem as a response to a customer request. Besides the fact that it apparently irritates a lot of people, it's a two-word response where both words are negative.
She often trains restaurant staff, and when trying to break waiters/waitresses of this habit, she allows the people who insist on saying "no problem" to continue doing so -- and coaches the others to give positive responses instead (for example, "you got it" or "absolutely"). Then she counts their tips. Tips are always higher for those who give positive responses (sometimes more than double the "no problem" practitioners!).
About 20 years ago, while creative director of a clothing manufacturer, the CEO of the company informed all the employees of the business that they were not to use the term "no problem." He explained that, for some reason, every time one of the vendors with which we worked made use of the term "no problem" it was almost a guarantee that there would be MAJOR problems. The phrase was banished from our workplace - and I'm reminded of that each time I hear anyone utter "no problem."• Jeff Fisher | Engineer of Creative Identity | Jeff Fisher LogoMotives •
I have no problem with a person using "No problem" or "Not a problem." I have more of a problem with how you say whatever you say to me. I have heard people say "thank you" and "have a great day" and known it was not what they meant. It is really about two things: tone and intent.
For every story where someone has lost there mind, I can give you one where they haven't. Tens years of retail and fast food, I have seen and heard customers be dealt with in various manners. It really is all about the non verbal communications. A person's stance or walk or posture speaks volumes before they ever open their mouth.
Here are a couple pointers:
- Please look at me when you are talking to me.
- It is offensive to sit my money on the counter when I handed it to you. Any incidental contact will not result in you getting sick nor am I dirty.
- Stop talking to employees when a customer walks in and focus on the customer.
- Please do not sigh or roll your eyes because you have to wait on me.
I use "no problem" when people begin by apologizing about pointing something out. I want to reassure them that it is okay, and I will deal with it. I hate the standard, company approved sayings. To me, it means you really don't care, you're just spouting the company's line. I told a client this morning, "I've got this, not problem." And he commented, "that's what I like about you, your can do attitude."
Let's have some balance to our universal mandates. Allow people to be humans, let them greet and interactive with customers in a respectful and real way. If business owners spent as much time worrying about attitudes of their employees as much as they do about phrases like these, this would not be a problem.
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FYI - - Did you know when communicating, word selection is a powerful tool? A very popular catch phrase right now (when talking to people or customers) is ending a conversation with a sharp: "No Problem" or "Not a Problem". We should avoid using that because it leaves a sour ending. If a client comes to you and asks a question or has an issue and you reply with a great answer and they thank you for taking care of something, you don't delight your customer as much by saying "no problem". It takes away from customer delight and makes them feel like they bothered you; like you took the time to help them out and they better think 2x about asking you again. A more delightful phrase would be: Thank you for bringing this issue to my attection. Have a great day!