Olly Pierce is one of my clients. Olly is a gym owner, body builder, and a former Mr. South Carolina. He’s fairly well known in the Greenville fitness circle because he’s been at it so long. Olly is also a really good guy and he knows his business like the back of his muscular hands. He loves helping other people make their goals come true, especially if those goals are fitness related.

Several months ago we partnered up and I’ve been doing a variety of work for him including making some videos. Some of these are fun, most are instructional. As his son Aidan prepares for his first body building competition, Olly asked me to create a video on Aidan.  Aidan played football with my son and he’s helped me in the gym; he’s a good kid with a good heart and he obviously enjoys being in the gym.

So here’s the result of our efforts. I think it’s a bit choppy but the clients love it and Aidan is in darn good shape for a 17 year-old kid. Darn good.

Take a look for yourself. And remember, if you’re looking for Social Media services in Greenville, SC, give me a call. (864) 616-7171

Hope, and Change

“I hope you had a great meal.”

Was he serious?

We had just finished paying over $400 for dinner for eight at a once great Charleston restaurant and not once had the manager stopped by our table. He never engaged us in conversation, he didn’t offer any wine recommendations, and there was no explanation of the evening’s specials other than a point to the chalk board on the wall.  He didn’t enlighten us as to why their menu hadn’t changed in twenty years. He never explained the odd salad of California greens, sunflower seeds and dried cranberries when we were in the middle of Charleston’s growing season. He offered no defense of the gummy Key Lime Pie or the frozen lima beans that were offered up as the local vegetable of the evening.

He did walk through his half empty (on a Saturday night, no less) dining room numerous times and he did smile at us, yet he never engaged us.

Until we had paid the check and were scooting back in our chairs.

“I hope you had a great meal.”



When was the last time you took a Friday afternoon detour to your supervisor’s office and asked, “I hope I did a great job this week”?

I would hope never.

Many years ago I learned never to ask a diner at the end of a meal if they enjoyed themselves. Because what if they said a sincere “No, I really didn’t.” They’re finished dining, they’ve paid the bill and only then you find out they’re unhappy. What can you do? Not much. The appropriate thing to say at the end of a meal is “Thank you for coming in.”

A polished server or manager can sense when a group is enjoying themselves and doesn’t have to pander, search for validity or a compliment.  And if someone isn’t enjoying themselves or is puzzled by a certain dish or disappointed by a slice of pie, that disappointment is most likely written all over their body language. At that point it’s time to ask a direct question; “Is your steak cooked the way you prefer? How are those lima beans? Are you enjoying that slice of Key Lime Pie?”

The same goes for anyone working in a team environment; you should know you’ve gotten the job done without having to resort to broad, tactless questions. When the time comes for a review or counseling session, you better know the outcome before you sit down with your team leader.  So take the guess work out of your performance by paying attention and getting the dang job done in a timely and professional manner.

Let’s leave the hope out of it.

Now about that pie.

How Can I Make You Happy?

“Is everything OK?”

“No sir, the pico de gallo is a little old.”
“Oh.  Is it mushy?”

“Yeah, it’s actually a lot mushy.”


And off he went.  All I could do was watch him carry on with his business of wiping down tables and refilling glasses of tea.  What the hell?

I was having lunch at a local Tex-Mex restaurant that I enjoy.  Their food is above-average, their offerings are much more interesting than the frozen and canned offerings served by the numerous $5.99 lunch special “Mexican” factories, and their prices are fair.  I had ordered a side of black beans with my taco basket, and the beans come topped with pico de gallo.  Tooth of the rooster, that’s the translation, pico is usually diced tomatoes, onions, cilantro with salt and pepper.  As I lifted a fork of the beans to my mouth, I smelled something daunting, a strong aroma that was out of place.  I took a small taste and as I rolled the beans and pico around, I took a good look at the tomatoes.  They were covered in a pasty gray film.  I discreetly used my napkin to remove said tomatoes then looked for a staff member, and waited.


How about if I bring you some fresh black beans and pico de gallo and a cold beer to boot?


The young man that had delivered my food walked past and that’s when the conversation ensued. And he shrugged his shoulders and carried on.

Why?  Was he not used to someone complaining about the pico or the food?  Had he not been trained in problem solving?  Did he not care?

I was trying to be discreet because there were other people seated near me and I didn’t need to blurt out, “Hey pal, this is spoiled!”  As I said, I like this place and I’ve had many enjoyable meals there.

A minute later my waitress walked past so I smiled and asked for a hand.


“This pico de gallo is very old.”

“Oh, sorry about that.” And she kept on about her business.

Oh come on people!  Make it right.  Ask the customer, “how can I make you happy?”  There was twenty five cents worth of pico de gallo on my $9.00 lunch and these two kids are about to blow this restaurant’s reputation.  For Pete’s sake, will someone make a decision here.

A minute later she walked past and I stopped her.

“I was trying to be discreet earlier because this pico de gallo is spoiled.  Please throw it out and bring me some fresh black beans with fresh pico de gallo.”

Well that got her attention.  She quickly returned with what I asked for. And I also had my next blog post.

It doesn’t matter what business you’re in, your front line people should be trained in conflict management and problem solving.  If your promises are not being delivered, find out why, ask questions, and train your people to take care of business, right now.  Give them permission to solve the problem right then and there.  We don’t need to go get the manager, we can solve this right now.  How can I make you happy? Let me go get you some fresh beans and pico and how about a cold Thomas Creek to go with those beans?

Don’t let a twenty five cent serving of anything derail years of hard work.

Now that that’s off my chest, how may I help you?