Putting others first

Think Tank Thursday: What’s The Value Of Your Name?

Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.—Muhammed Ali

Wise words. Veteran customer service and sales guru Mark Hunter never took a punch from Joe Frazier, but he does agree with Ali’s sentiment. Here, he says the same thing a different way.

“What company do you work for? The name of your company is seen in your email address, email signature, business card and many other places. I can even look at your profile on social media and see the name of the company you work for.

This begs the question: What’s the value of your name? I am not talking about the name of the company you work for. I am referring to your individual name. What do people think of when they see your name? The company or who we work for might change, but our personal name will always remain the same.

The value of your name is a reflection of who you are. It says a lot about you. I suspect you’ve all heard the name Nordstrom, the name of a very upscale clothing store. Although it’s publicly traded, it’s actually run by the Nordstrom family. If you know anything about Nordstrom, you know that they’re all about service. I’m talking about real, personal customer service. The Nordstrom store personnel are famous for sending out personal notes to customers, calling them by name and remaining connected with them for years. This culture of service is a direct reflection of the culture established by the Nordstrom family. Probably when you hear the word Nordstrom, you can’t help but smile and think of great service.

A few weeks ago, one of the three brothers who ran the company passed away. Blake Nordstrom was just 58 years of age and until just a few weeks before his death was very much an active part of the business. I’ve been struck by the amount of attention his passing has created on social media. The outpouring of comments from customers, employees and others about Blake’s individually profound impact is a testament to the person he was. He lived up to the expectations of the Nordstrom name even though it was his great-grandfather who began the company. Even more so, he added to the value of the Nordstrom name by helping people and that is what really made a lasting impact on the company and its customers.

If the name Nordstrom represents service, what does your name represent? What are you doing to add to the value of your name? Every day you get to encounter numerous individuals, but what impact are you making on them? My son works for Nordstrom and he’s mentioned that every time he was with Blake or any of the other family members, they never viewed themselves as being bigger or more valuable than others. For them, it was always about the other person. They put others ahead of themselves. How do you view yourself in the midst of other people?

Make it your primary goal to put others first this week and every week. Demonstrate service that helps those around you. It’s true that your name has value, but how much value?”

Mark Hunter, The Sales Hunter, is author of “High-Profit Selling: Win the Sale Without Compromising on Price.” He is a consultative selling expert committed to helping individuals and companies identify better prospects and close more profitable sales. To get a free weekly sales tip, visit www.TheSalesHunter.com.