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Blog - Watch your Language!

Watch your Language!

Posted by Tracy Powley 07/03/16

speechThere was an interesting article in the Metro (p39) last week about the importance of the language organisations use in their communication with customers; advocating that better results can be achieved when personality comes through in the tone and style.

Completely agree that this helps – we have just moved banks from one of the awful big high street ones to Metro Bank, to get a better quality of customer service. Their whole approach is less “corporate”, reflected in language which is more accessible and down to earth (such as a section on a form headed “the very important (but boring) stuff”).  So far our experience of them has matched up to their written style.

But that is the key; the two absolutely have to be aligned.

There is no point in an organisation adopting a friendly, straightforward tone in its written messages, if the experience of doing business with them and talking to their people is complex and robotic. Said High St bank claims to want to work with small businesses and peppers its written promises with words such as “straightforward”, “clear” and “quick decision making”. But its processes, including no direct access to a business banking team, being held in endless layers of call queues and being told their rigidity is “our business model” actually contradicts all their marketing messages.

So think about language, tone and words, of course, but make sure the reality of your team’s behaviour and actions match them. People suss insincerity quickly – we did and changed supplier as a result.   

You may also be interested in our blog on Ridiculous Workplace Jargon or our workshops on managing workplace behaviour.

Tracy Powley
Tracy Powley

Stella Chandler and I founded Focal Point on a shared belief that a training course run in isolation doesn't work. We passionately believe there must be support both before and after the training or coaching session itself for it to make a difference. When I am not facilitating sessions with clients or looking at ways to grow the Focal Point business, you will find me in a calming yoga class...

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