“We need to get our employee engagement scores up” and “We need to raise our customer satisfaction scores…” are refrains I commonly hear. Problem is, these concerns are all stated in a way that focuses on the score – the numerical ‘ends’ only. And when we focus only on meeting an ‘end’ number, it’s easy to lose track of WHY it’s so important to reach those goals: that our clients and employees are human beings and have specific wants and needs to be fulfilled. If we use language that focuses us only on ‘making our numbers’ – the ‘ends’, we’re likely to miss out on the fact that what we really need to ask is “Why aren’t our customers satisfied and our employees engaged? What do we need to do differently to help them?”

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