Month: September 2023

Lost Puzzle Piece a Business Lesson

My favorite part of my ProCO360 podcast interview with Jeff Eldridge of Liberty Puzzles was the conversation about how they replace puzzle pieces lost by a customer for free (great stories about the cause of missing pieces by the way!).  He said they have two full-time team members whose job it is to do that – free to the customer.

Can you find the missing piece?

I quickly did the math and asked Jeff, “Wouldn’t it be cheaper and easier to simply send those people a brand-new puzzle?

To Jeff, that’s not the point.

The point is customer engagement.  Jeff said that customers are sad when they call for a replacement piece. They spent hours with friends and family during which they collaborated, found pieces for each other, and had relationship enhancing conversations… then they were left with an ungratifying hole in the puzzle rather than a fulfilling sense of collective completion.

Liberty Puzzles fixes that sadness.  Often the lost puzzle piece can be attributed to a dog.  Liberty Puzzle offers to put a photo of the dog on the “wall of shame” and reports that back to the customer.  There are now hundreds of dogs on the wall!

So, while my idea may have been cheaper and easier, every puzzle piece lost by a customer is an opportunity for Liberty Puzzle to build a friendship.

Does Living in Colorado Foster Multiple Personalities?

In the most recent episode of ProCO360 (“Harmony as a CEO, Author & Speaker”), my conversation is with Kerry Siggins, CEO of Durango-based StoneAge. Kerry is a CEO – AND a Speaker, AND the author of a new book called The Ownership Mindset (AND a mom).  I’ve often felt challenged by the demands of being both a senior executive at the Colorado Chamber of Commerce, AND a podcaster.  Both Kerry and I have found ways to have our passionate avocations dovetail with our primary vocations.  We’ve done that by structuring our avocations to support the performance of our primary professional roles.  As Kerry puts it, she’s showing that “there’s a different way to lead a company.”

A friend, author and speaker John Garrett, wrote What’s Your “And”? Unlock the Person Within the Professional.  His thoughtful and encouraging premise is that bringing one’s whole self (including hobbies, interests, background) to the workplace enriches the company for all.  I agree, and what I’m discussing above is different.  I’m fascinated by having two or more professional lives that are interwoven such that synergy is created – both professional “lives” perform better.

Based on the now 150 episodes of ProCO360, and the hundreds of conversations I’ve had with Colorado CEOs, I conclude that Colorado’s work culture, probably more than other locations, enables those of us with multiple professional roles to mesh them together and be transparent about that with our companies and colleagues.

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