Be Genuine or Don't Bother

Q: I am a firm believer in saying what I'll do and doing what I say. However, I do want to provide whatever support for my employees and clients when possible. What are some ways to give that impression without being unpleasant about it?
A: You are right to be cautious. Clients are smart (they hired you, didn't they?) and keenly perceptive (they got their job, didn't they?) and employees are intelligent, intuitive and have probably already dialed into your persona, so be genuine or don't bother.
Here are a few combined thoughts for clients and employees alike:
• Purposely "beat" a promised deadline (e.g., something expected next week is given to them tomorrow).
• Periodically send over helpful information and notes about things you feel will benefit them.
• Send an informal note recommending articles of particular interest to them or their business with no other "strings" attached.
• Prepare a summary report of an event you just attended and send it to them without telling them in advance that you are going to do it.
• Provide friendly, unexpected reminders/acknowledgments of key dates, events, anniversaries, birthdays, etc. Do not even consider these unless you have already talked about the event and share its significance.
The ultimate goal, is for employees and customers should always to get them to think "Wow, that was way more than I ever expected and I appreciate that." What you don't want them to think is "That's odd. I wonder why he or she did that." It has to be natural and something that occurs to you as a person, not in your role as a manager, sales person or business owner. Non-business items can many times be more appreciated than business items.
As always, please accept my wishes for a great and personally rewarding week. If I can be of assistance to you and/or your organization, please call or write and I will respond immediately!
George F. Mancuso