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A shoulder tap and a back story.

As small business owners who want to serve our customers, we need to know their back stories. Once again the central theme is the importance of relationships. Life, business, education, and even faith is all about relationship.

Today on facebook, a friend posted the following story.




If the passenger had been in a relationship to know the cab driver’s backstory, how would the story have changed? Perhaps she would have taken another cab? Intentionally engaged in constant chit-chat? Remained silent from start to stop? Her knowledge of the driver’s story would change her behavior, for both their sakes.

Too often in business, we believe our product or service fits every customer. But if we don’t take the time to build relationship and capture the customer’s backstory, our services and products will never improve. Worse, someone else will listen, understand, and better meet the customer demand.

Danny Flores of Smash Local Marketing lives this principle, on both sides. Danny is very open about his own inspirational backstory. And Danny is helping me implement a Contact/Client Referral Management System. He listened and diagrammed the way he perceived my workflow to help refine the way we use the system. The end result should be very close to what I imagined, and in some ways even better. He understood my backstory.

In the same way, to build a great estate plan, I need the backstory. Even a simple “who do you love” question is enriched by the understanding of how friends and family members have changed your life. That discussion, the rich backstory, helps us write a plan that leaves you with peace that your loved ones will know just how you treasured them and how much thought you invested in their legacy buckets.

It is always about relationships. Let’s start 2019 by seeking out the backstory. Let’s not let a shoulder tap catch us unaware.

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