In this transcript, Clay Clark (Founder of Thrive15.com) sits down with Lee Cockerell (man who managed 43,000 employees at Walt Disney World Resort) to talk about customer service training and knowing the truth on Thrive15.com!
Clay Clark: Knowing the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Getting into that, knowing the truth, talk to me about that.
Lee Cockerell: We talked about that earlier too and I say if you don’t know the truth you can’t make the right decision. If I don’t know the truth I’m going to make the wrong decision. I talk about my son. I came home one time, he was 16 years old and he was dressed on a Saturday morning and my wife and I had been out of town. It’s Saturday morning and it’s 8:00, I just got off the plane, I walk in, and he’s standing there. What’s wrong with that? Sixteen year old dressed on Saturday morning? I said, “Daniel, what time did you get home?” I said, “You may want to use the 10-second rule.”
We always had a 10-second rule. You get 10 seconds to decide which story you’re going to tell me. I said, “If you tell me the truth probably you’re going to have a bad day. If you tell me a lie you’re going to have a bad year.” He said, “I don’t need the truth. I drank beer last night and I just got here.” I said, “Now you’ve got to stop.” Now I know the truth. What am I going to do with it? I could have done what my mother would have done. She would have got me down to the church, AA, I would have had to see a psychiatrist. She would have gone nuts. She would have yelled about it. I said, “Good decision. I’m glad you made that decision. You can go to bed. You won’t hear about it when you wake up.”
I could have gone after the beer. I’m not going to stop that. I don’t even know how you control it. Next time he doesn’t drive and get killed because Dad beat him up so bad he was afraid not to come home. “You can call me, by the way, Dan, and I’ll come and get you and you’ll never hear about it. You’ve always made the right decision.” I think about that because I knew the truth I made the right decision.
Clay Clark: In business a lot of times there is the emotion of the situation but you have to find out the truth. You have to get down, you have to ask the customer what happened, ask the key employees what happened.
Lee Cockerell: I can tell you, you’ve got to ask five times.
Clay Clark: OK.
Lee Cockerell: You were late to work, why? Because of traffic. Why? Because I got up late? Why? Because I went out and drank too much last night. Why? Because …
Clay Clark: Asking five times helps you …?
Lee Cockerell: Basically you got drunk last night, that’s why you’re late, not the traffic.
Clay Clark: OK.
Lee Cockerell: Five times you get to the truth.
Clay Clark: It’s kind of the rule of five. If you ask five times you’re peeling back the onion to get to the core of the problem.
Lee Cockerell: Try it with your kids as you get older. Why? The first story they tell you is not the truth.
Clay Clark: That’s huge. I’m going to start doing that. Asking five times. That’s huge. You say here, “Be a copycat.” What does it mean to be a copycat?
Lee Cockerell: I think today there’s not much new. Starbucks, we talked to the father of Starbucks, he’s the biggest copycat in the world. He went to Italy on vacation and saw them drinking espressos and coffees and came back and started Starbucks. Basically.
Clay Clark: Yeah, that’s where the barista came from.
Lee Cockerell: Copycat. In the business you’re creating now other people have done this too. The key about being a copycat is get the idea then make it better. Make sure your Thrive is better than the ones you’ve seen online. Make sure that your coffee shop is better than the one you saw what you thought was a good idea. Or you had a good idea you wanted to open a printing store. Just make it better. What are you going to do to make it better? You’re going to deliver. You’re going to open earlier. We’re going to deliver it free.
Clay Clark: Add that magic to it.
Lee Cockerell: Yeah, add the pieces to it. You probably won’t come up on an original idea but you can make it better. That’s what most things are today.
Clay Clark: Napoleon Hill talks about two kinds of … He’s a success author, but he talks about two kinds of imagination. He says one is synthetic and then the other is creative. He says synthetic is where you take an existing idea and you modify it and make it better or you take two ideas and put them together to make them better. Creative is where you just invent something out of nothing. Like the one guy in the history of the universe who discovered fire. That’s a creative one.
Lee Cockerell: It will never be done again.
Clay Clark: Yeah. He was just saying the person who creates the creative, that’s that one out of a billion person. We can all do the synthetic. We can all be the copycat.
Lee Cockerell: Perfectly said.
Clay Clark: Yeah. It says here “Fish where the fisherman ain’t.” What are you talking about?
Lee Cockerell: Don’t keep trying to do what everybody else does. I learned, my grandfather always said, “If 10 guys are fishing there let’s move upstream because there are too many hooks in the water. We’re not going to catch many fish down here.” Don’t do what everybody else is doing. If everybody opens at 8:00, open at 7:00. If everybody doesn’t deliver, deliver. If everybody doesn’t stay in touch with their customers every hour when something is supposed to be delivered, call them. Add a bunch of stuff that everybody else is not doing.
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Clay Clark: How would you find out what the competition is doing?
Lee Cockerell: You do there. You treat them. I just did it for a company. I was a mystery shopper at a conference center for two days out in California in San Ramon recently. They hired me to go and be a customer.
Clay Clark: At Disney did you ever send out mystery shoppers?
Lee Cockerell: I wrote a report that thick. Huh?
Clay Clark: Did you ever send out mystery shoppers at Disney?
Lee Cockerell: Oh, yeah. Absolutely. We have them all the time. Not only that, I set up a system where everybody I know that goes there that they were willing to give me a little report on it. We even gave them a camera and told them to take pictures all