A 4-month-old Doberdane pup recently joined the HULK Media team as Brand Ambassador. Granted she doesn’t come with heaps of experience, but she proves to be an incredibly fast learner and a great teacher.

Here are a few key take-outs from her that can be applied to business.

Not everyone wants to play

Our team often goes for walks on the beach to clear our thoughts and Harley quickly learned that not everyone she meets necessarily wants to play. There is a strong parallel in how in business when acting from a place of believing we are great at what we do, or our product or service is the solution, we often want to connect straight-up and share our exciting story with others. Yet, what Harley demonstrates is by being observant, before jumping in and trying to connect with everyone she meets, fast tracks their bond with her.

Decisions based on data (or observation)

It took our new Brand Ambassador no time to figure her team out. She already knows everything about us by closely observing our behaviour and preferences. She knows that knowing us well sets her up to be a better team player. How often as business owners, marketers and sales professionals do we assume we know what our customers want, instead of taking the time and sincere interest to explore their desires, wants and fears and truly see what they see? According to the relational database management system provider Teradata, only 41% of marketing executives use customer engagement data to inform their marketing strategy. The fact that best business decisions are based on data (or observation) and not guesses wraps up another Harley-smarts.

Two ears one mouth

Harley is a great listener – well most of the time. Research suggests that dogs, like humans, process the emotion conveyed in our tone of voice separately from the verbal content. If we listen and observe closely, we’ll notice that our customers constantly emit buying signals, much like a traffic light signaling red, orange and green. Any business owner, marketing specialist or sales professional who empathetically upgrades their listening skills and truly understand what their customers feel about their product or service will gather more data and improve their business success.

Consistency

The success in effortlessly integrating our new team member is owed to routine and structure. Harley is a creature of habit. For her to have a positive outlook on life and being able to deal with any changes and new things that come her way, she needs a stable routine and be handled with consistency. What good habits do you have in your business that set you up for success? Is it waking up early, setting daily business goals, having an Hour of Power, achieving inbox zero or good time management? Who we show up as in business is an extension of who we are in our personal life and developing good habits is not only crucial for personal growth but also sets us up for success and productivity at work.

Service is an attitude

Harley has the most beautiful attitude of service. She offers her team loyal companionship and unconditional love. Corporate leadership expert John Maxwell claims that being in the service sector for 20 years taught him that service is mostly an attitude. By having an attitude of service and being responsive and flexible to our customers and clients’ needs will leave a positive and lasting impression that will result in loyalty, repeat business and revenue growth. An Annual Consumer Impact Study showed that 89% of consumers stopped doing business with an organisation due to poor customer service. So, to conclude, by having our mission, vision, and values aligned – both in business and in life – will enable us to believe in the value we add and step into our purpose to wholeheartedly be of service to others.