Lately I have been talking to more and more people about social media for their business: the importance of it, best practices and examples. That last part has become the most important. I have noticed that the more examples of good and bad Facebook Business Pages and the more examples of specific things they can post that are relevant to their business, the better these conversations go. When I was teaching, examples were key and kept the attention of my students. When I was writing for research, examples were necessary in order to buttress my arguments. In tiffs with loved ones, they always seem to ask for examples. You know, “Oh, really? I do that? Give me an example!” Right? It is how most of us learn and understand – by means of examples.
Below is a list of three major ways that you can use examples in your small business efforts to make things run more smoothly and get the results that you’re looking for:
- Employee handbook: A lot of terms and situations are relative, making definitions for things such as “slacks” “business casual” and “comfortable” awfully difficult to nail down. Instead, use examples of what to and not to act, to and not to dress rather than simply giving the dress code an arbitrary name like “presentable” This will ensure that you cover your butt, and they cover theirs… literally.
- Lead by example: This should hold true for every employee that works for you. The owner or CEO should lead by example for his or her managers. The managers should lead by example for their teams, and the team members should strive to lead by example for their peers and their newest team members. This sounds cheesy, I know. I am aware of that. But it’s true. It also helps because then if someone isn’t working at the right level, other positive examples can be identified and goals can be set based on those individuals
- Provide examples to your customers: Work in the food industry? Free samples help your customers make decisions. Demonstrations of how your product works before purchase establishes trust and credibility. Any time you have the ability to demonstrate what your business – whether it is service or product – can do to help or please your customer, take it.
Do not underestimate the power of an example. It will help ensure that you get your point across accurately and that your audience understands you, whether that be your customers or your employees.