In marketing there is a concept around the customer journey that a person must like, know, and trust you in order to make a big ticket purchase.
This was on my mind recently in a couple non-marketing situations.
One situation involved a changing of responsibilities. In retrospect, I believe that because of a lack of trust the attempted communication was not received well by either party. As a result, anger built up to the point of a screaming confrontation. Once everyone calmed down, a conversation took place that resolved 95% of the issues. The screaming could have been avoided if trust had been securely established in advance.
In a second situation, my daughter received advice from two people regarding her employment situation. I was present when both conversations took place. The words and phrases used were all but identical. Yet, because she didn’t like the first person who provided advice, she asked the second person. That person’s words were received with gratitude and enthusiasm. If you ask her today, she will tell you only the second person provided usable advice. It’s about likeability.
It is the same for the youth in the care of Boys and Girls Homes of North Carolina. Before they will listen to the guidance provided by the staff, a level of likeability must be in place. As the youth get to know the staff and the principles of The Waccamaw Way, they begin to trust the experience. They lean into care, enabling them to feel hope for the future.
Melissa Hopkins is the Public Relations and Marketing Specialist for Boys and Girls Homes of North Carolina.