This is a funny story.
Last week at our monthly CN lunch, Julie Kuney provided the short educational moment. Julie is the co-owner of ComfortKeepers, a company that provides non-medical, in-home care, typically to seniors.
Julie talked about rewarding our referral sources and how important it is to do so and do so appropriately. Then she took out two big plastic bags and kind of tongue-in-cheek said that she was giving us all two gifts. In one bag were individually wrapped mints and in the other bag were invidual envelopes of deodorant. I'm sure these are items she uses in her business.
What she did not do, but would have been even funnier, would have been to pass out the mints to just half the room and the deodorant to the other half. I'm sure the second half would have felt slighted.
It would have been the perfect example of what happens when we don't think through the gifts we give to referral sources or even clients. Making sure the reward is the same value and in the same vein is important. After all, your referral sources do talk and if one finds out they didn't get as nice a gift, you'll be handling that awkward issue forever.