Thursday, January 12, 2012

ROL: Comfort Is Key.

ROL (Return on Life) is derived from the metric ROI (Return on Investment). Just as changes (hopefully small) to investment increase profitability (hopefully disproportionately larger than the increase in investment), small incremental changes in behavior can greatly increase QOL (Quality of Life). This week's ROI is about making others comfortable.

I have spent most of my professional life as a funeral director.  The families I serve are in pain, but almost everyone I serve is uncomfortable. People attending a funeral usually don't attend  funerals regularly. Given the subject matter no one other than funeral home staff is quite sure what to do.

People that arrive late for funeral are often in a quandary. Usually, the late attendee starts by apologizing to me (and hey, I only work there). As they approach the door to the service the look on their face is a cross between confusion and embarrassment. I have no way to politely tell the latecomers the family doesn't take attendance and often won't remember who attended the funeral. What I do to attempt to lessen their anxiety is inform them whether they are entering close or away from the lectern and which way to turn for seats. I don't know if my information helps, but it is information I like to know when I show up to anything late.

I need to remember to help people find a comfort level more ofter. I think it makes everyone happier.

What do you do to put others at ease? How does it make you feel when you help? How do you feel when no one helps make you comfortable in a strange/new situation?

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