A Personal Policy That Creates Good Luck

I know you’ve had this experience: you talk to someone at customer service about an issue you are having and they are not being helpful. Then, they drop the bomb: “That’s just our policy.” Just your luck.

Those words probably elevated your blood pressure. Unless you were being unreasonable with your request, this unwillingness to help the hand that feeds them will eventually lead the way to fewer customers.  It’s the corporate way of saying that they really don’t care about your issues and that profits (i.e., the company’s issues) come first. The company is not creating good will, which leads to good luck.

Your Personal Policy

Companies aren’t the only ones with policies that shun people. Individuals can have a personal policy that can be a turn-off, too. These policies don’t have to be written. They are conveyed through our actions.

People will interpret our behavior as a personal policy. If we shut out others, it can have a negative effect on our own good luck. Examples of personal policies you might have, but might not be aware of:

  • I wait until someone else says hello first
  • I don’t look people in the eyes when speaking to them.
  • I comment on difficult discussions by email or online, preferring to avoid face-to-face conversations when possible.
  • When I attend business networking events, I find someone I know and hang out with them instead of meeting new people.
  • When my colleagues go out for lunch, I don’t offer to drive.

These seemingly innocuous behaviors send a strong signal to others about you. Those who don’t know you typically won’t understand the nuances of your personality during  your first interaction. Introverts might have a bigger hump to overcome than extroverts when it comes to engaging people. Make sure you are sending the right message.

How you come across matters. Your body language and actions convey your personal policy. Just be sure it adds to your good luck and doesn’t take from it.

4 Ways to Balance Business Networking with Family Time

Got kids? Me, too. Need to attend business networking events while being sensitive to family time? Ditto.

Juggling family time and squeezing out an opportunity to attend business networking events can be tricky. Here are 4 ways to help with your balancing act:family time

  • Pick 3 “must attend” business networking events per quarter. When you have little ones at home, your time is no longer your own. You won’t be able to attend every event you want.  Find an average of one networking event per month that you would classify as “must attend.”  This means that by attending this networking event, you feel will learn something new or meet at least a handful of useful new contacts. Read more: How to Decide Which Networking Event Works Best for You.
  • Coordinate with your spouse. Having a supportive spouse is critical to managing work and family. This means if your spouse works, you should be sensitive to his/her requests as well. Coordinate who will pick up the kids after day care or after school activities are over while you attend the business networking event. Read more: Organization Tips for Parents.
  • Rely on your extended network of school friends. Schedule a weekday play date or homework time at your child’s friend’s home. You might find that your extended network is happy to help you periodically when you have to attend a business networking event, even more so if you return the favor. Read more: Setting Up Play Dates.
  • Don’t feel guilty about events you can’t attend. There will always be another seminar, another conference or another meet-up.  However, you can never get back time you lose if you missed your child growing up. Go to the soccer games, birthday parties and everything else you can attend. You will feel far more guilty later on if you lost that precious family time with your child. Read more: Letting Go of Guilt.