You can’t see the label from inside the jar. Think of your own customer service experience with this saying in mind.

You walk up to the counter to place an order and what do you see? Do the employees on the other side of the counter look neat and professional? Are they smiling? Are they focused on the approaching customer or are they having their own conversation? Are the cash register and counter areas clean?

In the brief time you’re at the counter, you’re taking this all in before you’ve even had the chance to say “hold the onions”. That first impression is what you walk out of there believing.

A really good customer service representative goes on the opposite side of the counter – where you are – to know what it is you see. Even if they physically don’t go there, they are seeing themselves from your perspective. That’s the start of making a great first impression.

Now think about the jar’s role in your own personal or professional life.

If you’re a parent, what is the face your child sees looking back at them? Your expression is their perception. They need to know that no matter what, they are loved.

In my career, I’ve had lots of opportunities to create content for presentations and ad campaigns. Some of those ideas, at first glance, I really liked. But when I put myself (and the idea) on the opposite side, I knew I had to toss it out. I realized that my perception and the audience’s perception would be different. I had to pull the two sides together until the message could truly resonate with them.

Wherever you are and whatever you are doing – get out of the jar and look back. If you don’t like what you see, change it. Make your message match what you’re hoping to achieve.

You’ll bring out the best in you.

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