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Tuesday, 25 November 2014

What’s the Real Return on Optimism? A Survey

What’s the Real Return on Optimism? A Survey
Jan Moran

 Well, color me happy!
As a writer and entrepreneur, I’ve often witnessed the power of optimism in business. 
An optimistic attitude instils confidence in business partners,
from clients to employees to investors.

To determine the real return on optimism, simply flip the switch:
Consider the damage that an oppressive workplace can do.
What would that do to your business partners? Your employees?

Optimism: As Simple As Answering the Phone with a Smile
An optimistic attitude creates a cheerful working environment,
making it a joy rather than a drudge to go to work.
If you’re in the business of customer service, and really, who isn’t? — then a joyful interaction
is not only a rare thing of beauty, but it might also make the difference
between your client happily signing on the dotted line again — or not.
In my last business, I asked everyone to answer the phone with a smile.
Some thought I was a little nuts, but try it for yourself — you can actually hear a smile
over the phone. Soon, callers began saying things like, “It’s always such a joy to speak to you folks. You’re like an oasis in my day. I look forward to calling your company.”
Music to my ears.

Optimism Sets the Stage for Successful Resolutions
That meant that when callers were transferred to me,
I had a client or vendor in a good mood on the line.
What a difference! Even if there was a problem to resolve,
the optimistic attitude set the stage for a successful resolution.

Optimism began to creep through the company in small ways.
The receptionist took ownership and created her own joyful answer:
“It’s a beautiful day at Scentsa, how can we help you?”
Surprise and delight became the order of the day.

Optimism Drives Creativity
Ever try to be creative with a dark cloud over your head?
Pretty tough, huh? Negativity kills creativity.
Our most creative days were when optimism ruled.
Often, when management or investors dictate change and a negative person is forced into the mix, creativity suffers. Then sales suffer. Clients get cranky. It’s a slippery slope.

Keep optimism high.
Now, my best days of writing begin with a sunny attitude. My expectation is that it’s going to be a great day. So what happens on my worst days? You guessed it. They started the way they ended. The page bleeds red ink. Might as well have stayed in bed.

Optimism is Money in the Bank
Even if optimism isn’t exactly money in the bank, at the very least it primes the financial spigot.
One thing is certain, if you’re trying to create a product, build a company, or turn one around,
you won’t do it nearly as well with a negative attitude.
In business school, I remember the case study of Fred Smith, the founder of FedEx.
With his optimistic attitude, Smith inspired such dedication to the cause
that when the going got tough, his employees made personal sacrifices
to keep the company afloat — sacrifices which were later well-rewarded with success.

Optimism is a Can-Do Attitude
It might sound a little old-fashioned, but you’ll never accomplish your goal without the belief
that you can do it. Plant seeds of happiness and cultivate your attitude like a garden.
Create a plan, work that plan, adjust and seize opportunities that arise, but above all
be sure to add a dose of cheerful optimism. Plus, you’ll enjoy the ride a whole lot more.
That’s why I’m such a big fan of Richard Branson, Mr. Optimism.
You gotta have a dream.

Optimism Escaping You?
Can’t summon the sunshine? Let’s be realistic: If you just can’t seem to summon an optimistic mindset, you might be suffering from depression. Maybe you need to seek help. That’s okay.
My heart goes out to the family of actor Robin Williams; he is missed by so, so many,
but his death put a spotlight on this often crippling condition.
It you’re suffering, reach out for help.

What’s Your Return on Optimism Investment? Measure It!
So how might you calculate this seemingly elusive return on optimism?
Glad you asked! Here’s a quick, fun survey to calculate your return on optimism.
Follow the link, take a quick 10-question survey, and discover your score.
Plus, you’ll gain some valuable insights. (Don’t worry, it’s totally free, no gimmicks.)
Then, come back and share your score and insights.  
Post it in the comments — and think about what you could change in your life,
or in your business, to improve it?
Your actions might be drastic — maybe you’ll decide to fire a client.
Or you might try something small, like smiling when you answer the phone.
Or get up a little earlier and grab 20 to 30 minutes of exercise, or meditation or prayer,
before the day revs up.

Think about it…
And how would that change your life?
Disclosure: This article was commissioned by Xerox.

Perhaps you’d like to check out my sister blogs:              this takes advantage of the experience and expertise of others.     describes the steps to reading in the way your mind prefers.        just for fun.

To quote the Dr Seuss himself, “The more that you read, the more things you will know.
The more that you learn; the more places you'll go.”

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