Are You Social? No, Really?

September 23, 2011  |  Social  |  Share

This has been something that has been on my mind for quite a while. It is something that I almost immediatly noticed when moving to the States about 5 years ago and started having business meetings with partners and customers. To my knowledge it is not something that is just limited to the west coast.

You’re probably wondering by now; what is this you speak of Menno?

Well, have you ever noticed that, when attending a business meeting, 9 out of 10 times you’re not offered anything to drink? Yet everyone walks into the meeting room with their own bottles, cup of coffee or frappuccino’s. To make matters even worse, often people step out of the meeting to just get a refill without asking anyone else if they would like to have something to drink!

To me this is just unintelligible, anti-social and simply ‘not done’ in the country where I come from! Do you invite friends and family over to your house and don’t offer them anything to drink there as well?

Now here’s the kicker, in my case, usually a company wants to talk about (Social) CRM. How can you be social as a company if you and your employees don’t practice this in real life? How can you establish (customer) relationships if you don’t use some basic etiquette? There is nothing better than having a business conversation while drinking a cup of coffee together!

This is a country that is really all about customer service. Waitresses and waiters often get paid below minimum wage and need to make up for that by providing extra good service in order to get a good tip. I wonder how many of you bitch and moan about whether or not you were served well in a restaurant and the next day you don’t even offer a guest at your office something to drink.

So what’s the point of all of this? Well, there have been many definitions written about (Social) CRM and don’t worry, I am not going to list them here. You should have stumbled upon a few of these definitions the last few years, I’m sure. Most of them are good but I think a lot, perhaps all, are forgetting the most essential part; you have to be social in order to succesfully embrace and apply (Social) CRM.

What do you think? Should an organization be socially active on all of these social networks when they often are the complete opposite when you visit their offices?


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