Making Sweet Money Music – Part 1

My favorite part of the symphony is right before the lights go down.
You know, the part where the members of the orchestra tune up their instruments.
Interestingly, each member could tune their instrument by themselves before they go on stage. They could tune it to a standard and that would be perfectly acceptable; if they were playing by themselves.
But for orchestral playing you tune every time so that everyone is on the same tone.
The conductor decides ahead of time what everyone will tune by. Traditionally, the oboe will tune the orchestra by playing a long, sustained A. Everyone else is expected to tune according to that note.
Can you hear the string section, the violins, the violas, the cellos, the bass, and the harp in noisy cacophony?
Next, the flute, the piccolo, the English horn, the clarinet, the bassoon, the trumpet, the trombone, and the tuba.
All this noise, so much discord. And then the lights go down. The conductor walks out to center stage. The audience applauds, his hands go up and for a very, very brief moment…complete silence.
It is in this moment that a tingle begins to dance at the base of my spine. The conductor’s arms come down, the orchestra leaps to life and that tingle runs all the way up my spine to the base of my neck. A tear of joy moistens the corner of my eye.
All the individual moving parts come together to form a singular beautiful thing. These are professionals. This is the result of a cumulative hundreds of thousands of hours of practice and experience and it is moving.
Does your business run like an orchestra? Do you have the ability to send a tingle of joy up your customer’s spine?
This requires you, as a conductor, to bring together a group of people and orchestrate them. To bring all the moving parts into harmony. You have the receptionist, the sales section, the billing department, customer service, and delivery of the final product or service.
How do you orchestrate all these moving parts?
You practice.
It is critical that you have regular company meetings with everyone. Together.
Yes, you should still have your meetings with your sales team and yes you should have meetings with the installers and your meetings with the office crew. But it is critical that you also have a meeting with the entire ensemble so that you all can be tuned to the same tone.
What is that tone?
Short of having an oboe player on staff, it’s your core company values and beliefs. They need to be understood by everyone in the entire organization. The receptionist who answers the phone should know exactly how the boss would handle the irritated customer on the other end when their A/C just quit working…and your repair tech was already there this morning.
“Yes Mr. Jones, you are right, that should not have happened. We will have someone out there within the hour to get you back up and running and of course, no charge to you.”
The receptionist can make this decision because they’re a key player in the orchestra and knows the song you are playing. And the only way they can know that is to be there for the practice sessions.
Everyone in your organization should be able to make the same call right on cue. Your orchestra should never miss a beat. It should be a thing of beauty. It should bring a tear to your eye.
That is how you send a chill of joy up your customer’s spine.
Next week we’ll have Part 2: The sad finale to this symphony and what you should NEVER allow your people to do.
– Zac Smith, VC

1 thought on “Making Sweet Money Music – Part 1

  1. […] Last week I talked about how to get everyone in your organization on the same page, just like an Orchestra. (Click here to read it) […]

Comments are closed.