Friday, October 19, 2007

Had to share....

My 2 day meeting for work was awesome! It's really wonderful to network with others who do what you do. I have to share a story....

My job is customer service. I'm the Senior Branch Office Administrator (BOA) for an international investment firm (Edward Jones). We sell stocks, bonds, mutual funds, cds, annuities, life insurance, long term care, banking services (credit cards/money market/debit cards/mortgages).... all the stuff that makes most peoples eyes glaze over (including mine!). I'm responsible for everything in the branch office, with the exception of soliciting orders. Our office structure is, for the most part, one broker (Financial Advisor) and one BOA. My FA is also the Regional Leader for Southwest Florida. Because of this leadership position, and the fact that we are a very productive office, we have an additional BOA. I serve, informally (only because we have not set up a formal program....yet), as a mentor for the new BOAs in our area. I'm a life line/phone-a-friend/supporter/encourager, kinda like the mom! Several years ago, we helped another new FA get started in the business by giving him a place to work in our back room, teaching him the business, supporting, and providing some accounts to manage. He has since moved on to his own office and is doing quite well. He hired a new BOA 9 months ago and I made a point to call and introduce myself to her on her first day in the office and encouraged her to call me if she every had questions or needed support or encouragement. She called me.... lots! But that's ok. I meant it when I reached out to her. She was always so sweet & thankful for everything. No big deal, I'm just doing my job, a job I love with an awesome company. If one succeeds, we all succeed....

One thing we do in our community each month during the school year is we honor 2 senior students at the local high school as "Student of the Month". It's simple, We asked the principal to give us the name of one female and one male student who has shown good citizenship/stewardship qualities. The school will give me some background on the student, why they were chosen, what they like about the High School, what their future plans are... I print up a certificate on certificate paper, put it in a $3 frame from WalMart, we go to the High School, make a big deal out of these kids, present the certificate, meet the family, take a few pictures and go on about our day. I love SOM day, because these kids, usually, are not the star athlete or the high honor student or the one that gets the lead in the play. They are "just" kids... It always just feels good...

Are you tired of reading yet? I'm sorry, but I want to give you lots of background, so you can understand why this is just soooo awesome! You might want to stop now & get a tissue before you continue.

Our company mission / goal is Customer Service Excellence. How can we make a difference in our customers lives? How can we motivate them to come back? How can we get them to refer their friends and family? How can we retain them?

This was the discussion led by my FA yesterday afternoon. Part of his presentation was this video: Johnny the Bagger

***Please stop reading and watch this short video now.... tissue handy....***

After the video, my FA told the story about one of our Students of the Month from several years ago. A young man name Robert, with Down Syndrome. Robert made a difference with his fellow class mates and the school administration. He was recognized because he went out of his way to help those with disabilities in the class room. be it tieing some ones shoes, giving them a pat on the back for accomplishing something, holding the door, encouraging, offering a smile ... After the award presentation, we went to meet the families. Roberts grandparents came from Canada to see their grandson get is certificate in the $3 WalMart frame..... because they wouldn't miss is for anything....because Robert made a difference in their lives in ways on one could ever imagine....

Tissue?

At this point in my FA's presentation, the lady sitting across the isle from me leans over and grasps my arm and sobs.... "That is MY Robert, My son"......
I'm toast... We are both standing in the middle of a room with 45 women & one man... sobbing.... The lady? The new, 9 month tenure BOA from earlier in this story, my mentee....

Of course, this is the point where my FA says, "Martha, can you come up and update us on the BOA mentoring program"..... Sure....sob... ok..... sob.... I said, to him, and the group.... "I just learned this, the young man you just told us about, is the son of our very own Katherin".... sob.....sniffle..... you should have heard the collective gasp from the room.... Amazing...

I composed my self, somewhat...sniffle....sob.... gave my little talk on BOA mentoring and why it is important to the new BOA's, the seasoned BOA, the Firm, and most of all the clients... Couldn't have had a better lead in if it had been all planned.... had more than half the room volunteer to do what ever they could...

Isn't it funny how, at the most unexpected times, things can come full circle???


Go get a tissue. I'm all out!
xoxo
~~Martha~~

P.S. Tassel class tomorrow! Details following....

3 comments:

Vonna said...

What a wonderful story, a super lesson and one that we should try to live up to on a daily basis...THANK you, for sharing it with us!

Deborah/LavenderRose said...

Oh, Martha, I'm going to always remember this story. What a very awesome thing for you to be in the center of. You're so special and such a wonderful person. I'm glad you're my friend because you're just the kind of person who makes everyone else's day good.
Hugs,
Deb

Ginger said...

Thanks, Martha for a sharing your serendipity. I love that video and SOM is great, too!
Happy stitching,
Ginger