I once was a brainwashed corporate retail banking junkie. Weaned on the mega-colossal mass marketing machine with top notch daily product training, target setting, target achievements, rewards, spirit points, bonus systems, in addition to weekly brochures, pens, posters, cardboard standees for national campaigns, giveaways ad nauseum.

I drank the Kool Aid and I loved every minute of it.

It was all about the customers, the employees, the colleagues, the market team, and a real honest, positive vibe of helping others as much as we could. The C&W market developed our methodology for accomplishing our daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly goals. It was called TACOS and I still use it to this day.

Teamwork. You can’t do it alone. You can try, but you will die of exhaustion. Your team is the foundation for making things happen. Everyone works together, covers for each other and communicates well. The team concept plays a larger role than me, myself and I.

Accountability. Team members take ownership of their role in making the entire business move forward and gain momentum. The roles are clearly defined and each member is responsible for accomplishing their tasks. Failure to do so must be communicated quickly, a plan b created, then implemented. No one shirks his or her responsibilities, especially you.

Customer Experience or Customer Delight. When you look at your business from the outside in, you have to see it with the customer’s eyes. What do you think s/he perceives? How are the interactions between customers and staff? What metrics are you using to gauge customer satisfaction? But not only that, what are you going to do to improve the numbers? Business should aim for repeat customers. They better be happy so talk to them. What do they like and don’t like? We are all customers to one person or another even beyond the business world. As a dad, I have two customers who happen to be my sons. I have to listen to their needs without exception. One of my primary customers yesterday was my mom when it was her birthday. I called her up and she was delighted. Is every one of your customers happy? If not, fix it or close shop.

Operations. If all of your processes are working as they should then your business should be operating and functioning properly. Even as a sales manager you will still have some input on operations, especially on how the customer perceives them. Focus on this area before even opening your doors for business. Processes should be open to improvement by anyone at anytime.

Sales. Sales. Sales. You aren’t going to succeed if no customers show up to buy your goods or service. This should actually go first but tacos as an acronym sounded so much better.

It is the core of the TACOS business philosophy that if you focus on these five business areas, you will achieve your goals. And if you are strong in one area and weak in another, gain help from your friends and colleagues or buy help. Barter, negotiate, train. In order to survive you have to communicate well in order to find common ground. Even a competitor can be a valued partner.

Customer Experience Insights, the Facebook group I created, stems from the idea that with every customer transaction, regardless of goods or service or barter exchange, TACOS is either implemented well or has areas that need improvement. As an observant customer, one can genuinely listen, see and feel whether a transaction is a good, positive customer experience, just a mediocre humble-ho one or something you will warn all your friends about to stay away, oh please stay away, oh the horror.

In business or personal life TACOS can be a simple tool to remember what to focus on or how to talk about them with people you work with or hire. The ultimate goal is to work hard, work together and be successful in whatever you and your team choose to do. Communication is therefore absolutely essential. Without it, don’t bother leaving your home in the morning.

Good hunting to all. Rock on.