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Edna's Blog Posts


In keeping with our theme, you will find a new post here every Thursday. The stories and experiences are those of Anne Miner as told to Edna Tips.

Anne's stories fall into three categories:

  1. Life

  2. Life in Business

  3. Especially for Women

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Edna Tips has decided to take a trip south and she is not sure she will return to Canada. While I am sad to see her go, I am honoured that together we published more than 110 stories since launching in July 2020.

Please join me in thanking Edna for all her contributions and wishing her a fond farewell as she heads south for a happy and restful sun holiday!

Looking forward, I have decided to take a break to consider the future of Thursdays with Anne.

Earlier this week, a colleague encouraged me to use my own voice; she said she wanted, “More of Anne” than she felt she was getting through Edna.

I would welcome your feedback too.

There are three areas where I would appreciate your perspective dear readers:

  1. Would you prefer that I look for another partner like Edna or would you prefer that I carry on alone?

  2. Thursdays with Anne was fashioned after “Tuesdays with Morrie” where the author, Mitch Album, interviewed Morrie Schwartz every Tuesday. If I continue on alone, is the title Thursdays with Anne appropriate or would you suggest something else?

  3. Would you prefer to continue with written stories or is it time to switch to podcasts?

I will gratefully receive your candid feedback!

Please comment below, email: or call me at 416-804-2023.

Thank you so very much! I look forward to hearing from you!

Watch for the next chapter early in December.

Last week, Anne and I attended a virtual Master Class Series led by Marianne Gobeil; she is the CEO at Illumify Inc. I noticed that Anne was making notes and looked over to see what she was writing.

I know that Anne is working on an idea that will require change within a well-established organization with some long-standing members who are resistant and will not accept change easily. While they may not actively sabotage Anne’s efforts, they have great influence, and their voices could be raised to thwart the change.

When the session was over, Anne got up and wrote on her whiteboard.

Then she turned and asked me, “Edna, did you understand what Marianne was getting at when she talked about “Make it Matter?” About making the issue or change matter to the audience; your co-workers, senior leadership, customers, clients, patients, family …?”

I thought I did so I answered, “She wanted us to figure out what was important to us, what we wanted to see changed and why. Then she had us look at the change from the other side of the table and figure out what is important to or matters to those people.”

“Yes, that’s right” Anne answered. “And that is another way of saying that we need to be conscious that other people are interested in knowing what’s in it for them; the only people who really care about what’s in it for us might be our parents.

“I am sure that we all think about highlighting what’s in it (the change) for the other people but, I am not sure we think about why it should matter to them. I am not sure there is always something in it for them and that’s what is really making me think.

“Here’s a simple example. I prefer to have people schedule a time for us to meet rather than popping into my office (present company excluded of course) or stopping me in the hallway. Why does that matter to me? When we have a scheduled time, I can prepare, compose myself to focus and show up as my highest and best self.

“Why would that matter to anyone else? They have the greatest probability of getting to “Yes” quickly or getting the best guidance from me when I am able to give them my full and undivided attention. So, you see that there is something in it for them to comply with my preferences, but why should that really matter?

“When you accommodate someone’s preferences, you are more likely to build a bond between the two of you; more likely to collaborate successfully.

“Let’s imagine that you have less than positive results to report to me. There is nothing in it for you to deliver this information. You know that I have been expecting great news and this is not it. You check my calendar and book a short conversation.

“It matters to you that I have an opportunity to show up for this conversation as my highest and best. To be prepared to accept the news gracefully, even though it is not what I was expecting.

“Another example could be when you would like the company to sponsor the bus to take the children from your daughter’s school to the town track and field meet.

“How can you make that matter to me? You might know that I was a track and field competitor when I was young, that I coached others to be their best in high jump and relay, and therefore expect that I have fond memories of how good this was for me and other children.

“Putting this all together, you would schedule a time to talk with me and organize your thoughts so you can make the request in a manner that will matter to me, and the request is more likely to be granted.

Anne looked me in the eye and said, “How would you like to try it, Edna? Come back to me with a request for something important to you, and make it matter to me.”

Of course, I rose to the challenge. Now I am hoping for some help from you, my reader. Would you please send me your suggestions? You can help me polish my skills and learn further about how to make it matter too.

I see Anne at her desk typing furiously, while shaking her head. Curious to know why I asked her, "What's up?"

Anne stopped typing and smiled as she turned to me,

"I was just speaking with the Sales Prevention Department at Home Delivery Meals."

"I wanted to send my niece something as a thank you for her help last weekend. I know she buys from Home Delivery Meals, so an e-gift card seemed like a practical choice.

"I popped into their website and discovered that Home Delivery Meals has gift cards at four specific prices, none of which correspond to the amount I want.

"I put one gift card into my virtual shopping cart; when I went to add a second card to increase the amount, the system wouldn't allow it.

"So, I pick up the phone and call Home Delivery Meals. I don't wait long before Chrissy comes on the line with a cheerful greeting.

"I explain what I want to do and what I have experienced so far, and I ask whether there is something that I am doing wrong.

"The first issue is how can I send the amount I want to?" Chrissy asks if I mind holding while she talks with someone else.

"It was probably 2 minutes before Chrissy came back on the line to tell me, "NO, you cannot specify a different amount; the only amounts available are the ones on the website."

"OK, then I would have to buy multiple cards to make up the amount I want. Next, I ask Chrissy whether I can purchase multiple gift cards in one transaction?"

Again, Chrissy puts me on hold while she asks someone else. When she returns, she says, "NO, you cannot purchase multiple gift cards in one transaction; each card would have to be purchased in a separate transaction."

While she is on the phone with me, I proceeded to create the transaction to purchase one gift card.

"When I get to the checkout step, I ask Chrissy why a delivery address and date are required for an electronic gift card and, "Is there a way to bypass this as I don't want to enter the recipient's info?"

Chrissy puts me on hold for the third time. When she comes back, she says, "NO, there is no way to bypass the system; you must provide this information."

"Now, that's three times I have been told "NO." And that is my limit. I thank Chrissy and disengage."

"You see what I mean about Sales Prevention? No sale for Home Delivery Meals today! And I will never order anything from them in the future."

I listened to this whole story without interrupting, but I wanted to ask a question. I take a deep breath and begin by summarizing what I heard.

"It sounds like their system is not set up for gift card sales; it lacks flexibility:

1. You cannot choose your own amount for the gift card.

2. You cannot purchase multiple gift cards in one transaction.

3. You have to specify an order delivery date which may not suit the recipient.

4. You have to provide the delivery address of the recipient who may decide to order from a friend's house, her cottage, or her office."

"My question is this, Anne,

"Will you tell the CEO at Home Delivery Meals about the problem? So, they can fix it?"

Anne smiled as she replied.

"Yes, Edna, I will email the CEO; no one will fix a problem they were not aware of."

"I will send the CEO a copy of this blog post. From there, it is up to Home Delivery Meals to modify their system to be more sales friendly."

I asked, "Is there anything that would get you to reconsider buying from Home Delivery Meals?"

Anne thought for a moment and replied, "Yes. If the CEO replies to my email with a phone call, thanks me for taking the time to alert them to the problem and demonstrates that the issue truly is fixed."

Do you have a Sales Prevention Department in your business? Would anyone tell you if you did?

Comments (1)

02. Sept. 2022

Wow ! I am in awe of your skills and strategies. Now I know why I disliked just about every day as a department head in my school. Of course there was no training or mentorship involved. Like being tossed into the deep end and expected to suddenly swim. If I knew what I know now, I would have been on the phone to Anne the second after I got my promotion. All history now, but I understand that management doesn't have to equal misery. As always, Thanks Anne.