• Katie Easley

Client Experience | How to Deal with the Elephant in the Room

Updated: Aug 5, 2018

We all have an elephant in the room. It’s the awkward silence, difficult situation or one thing staring you in the face that you are trying to avoid. So, what do you do about it? It’s simple…Stare it in the face and take the sting out of the bite. Address the issue before it becomes a full blown circus. Allow me to share an example.

In 2011, I walked into a big box franchise that was trying to offer a custom, luxury service and new brand identity inside its already operating business. The existing brand reputation was known for a subpar level of service and product. This was a direct conflict with the new brands image and identity. After vetting the customer’s concern and feelings towards the big box business, I quickly crafted a message to confront the elephant. The key was to handle a potential concern before the client ever stepped foot into the building and allowed for it to become part of their experience. We started talking about the elephant before the client was even aware it was in our conference room. It was time to turn the negative into a positive and craft a new story. Needless to say, the initial concern became a moot point and the new story is the headline.

Every business has an elephant in the room, some are obvious like signage on a building or a feeling when you hear a brand name while others are hidden demons lurking in the abyss of bad online reviews. Tackle these challenges head on with honesty and a relatable story or message for your client. Stare the elephant in the eyes. Look deep into the beast that is holding you back and own it!

Does your business have an elephant that you are trying to take down? Share with me in the comments and let’s craft a new story to tell.

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