Julie Gerbsch is a lead instructor with Rapid Change and finds herself using the principles of Rapid Change at home and at work.
lives in Savannah, GA, with her
husband and three children.
Prior to her work with Rapid Change, Julieâ€™s career had focused on executive leadership of nonprofits including Director of the Childrenâ€™s Miracle Network Telethon of Greater St. Louis and Ronald McDonald Children Charities of St. Louis.
In 2006, she
was elected to the Savannah-Chatham
Board of Education and faced the challenge of customer service with parents of 34,000 students in the public school system.
By the time constituents contact her
, itâ€™s usually the â€œlast stopâ€ through the bureaucracy and the highly emotional (anger and fear) Reptilian brain has taken over.
Since most of her
communication is by telephone (lacking the 55% nonverbal cues of face-to-face communication) Julie
wanted to find a way to make conversations respectful and productive.
applied the principles of the brain taught in the â€œFundamentals of Rapid Changeâ€
and developed a three-step approach to every call: listening, repeating back, and taking action/documenting action.
listens and responds with short audible sounds to let them know sheâ€™s hearing them.
lets them know their concerns are important to her
and that she
hears and understands what they say.
asks them, â€œCan I repeat back to be sure I understand what you saying?â€ She
repeats the exact emotional words they use so they feel heard.
asks for their email address and explains exactly what she
will do to deal with the problem She
writes up their concerns, sending it to the superintendentâ€™s office and copying the constituent so they know the action has been completed.
finds that when people are so emotional, they donâ€™t remember what she
says, so the email is good reinforcement that they have been heard and there is follow-up action.