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Probably, Maybe – Possible. How learning Japanese could change your mind

Tabun means possible.

The language we use defines our outlook and our behaviour.

A few weeks ago someone posted a message to my Facebook page; it was from a man called Phill, who had been in the audience at a conference I had presented at.  The message read:

So I’ve recently been learning Japanese. When I came to the word “Tabun” it really stuck out for me. It translates as both “probably” and “maybe”.

I have to admit that this post caught my attention; it’s not every day someone tells you they’ve been learning Japanese (French maybe, Spanish quite possibly but not Japanese) and declares it on your Facebook page. The first thing that struck me was how complicated Japanese looks as a language – but then that’s because I have absolutely no knowledge at all about the characters or how the language is formed. It all looks Greek to me. I imagine psychology and behaviour texts, or even english, looks alien to people who have no knowledge of those things, either. I’ve always thought Japanese must be a very complicated language to learn because it’s everything English isn’t: they

70 Years To The Day Since This…

Bettine Le Beau remembers her time in the Nazi concentration camps but as Jez Rose discovers, she couldn't be more positive.

Bettine Le Beau remembers her time in the Nazi concentration camps but as Jez Rose discovers, she couldn’t be more positive.

It is 70 years to the day that the Nazi concentration camps were liberated. 70 years ago today saw the end of the Holocaust. Jez talks to Bettine Le Beau about her extraordinary life as a Bond Girl, actress, model, author – and Holocaust survivor.

Approximately 11 million people; mostly Jewish but also gipsies, homosexuals and communists, were murdered by the Nazis during the Holocaust. Bettie Le Beau survived. It’s a story of high drama, tension and extreme

“Breaking News” – How To Make A Positive Impact

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Breaking News! Trust can be eroded when we forget the importance of integrity.

Have you ever called a business; maybe your dentist or your hairdressers and clearly got through to a call centre, who the business have outsourced to handle their calls? It’s quite a smart tactic on the business owner’s part, ensuring they capture all of the potential incoming sales. However, what really irritates me is when the person answering the phone pretends to be from or even based at the actual business itself. Desire the fact you know your dentist employs just three people, you can hear hundreds of people chatting in the background and their keyboards all clattering away.

Perhaps you’ve had a sales call at home and the person has been all chatty and pally with you, like you were rekindling some sort of long forgotten moment of friendship. That lack of sincerity and humanity really annoys me and I know it annoys some of you, too, because you tell me! Attempts to get on side with people happen all the time and yet, they often don’t have the affect intended.

This is a classic example, which happened to me just a few weeks ago. You might have heard me on the radio, or seen me on television. Of course, you might not have done either but in order for this post to make sense, I’m going to pull back the curtain and offer you a glimpse into the reality of appearing on radio and television and at the same time, hopefully, provide an opportunity to enhance the impact you make on others.

You see, when a radio station or television channel need someone to comment on a news story, or have an item of interest, which they think you would be the ideal person to respond to or interview about, they, perhaps unsurprisingly, call that person up; or in my case they call my management. Invariably, as is the reality of topical news, that call comes in fairly last minute in response to whatever the news is and if I’m not readily available to talk with them right there and then (which I’m often not), they’ll ask me to call them back. Naturally, they need someone to interview or comment to help liven up the news and vary the pace and tone so it’s more interesting to listen to or watch and what if I don’t get their message until much later and miss the deadline? What if I just don’t bother returning their call? These are, of course, understandable concerns the researcher has and so they move on to someone else, in an attempt to find someone else relevant to be interviewed. Quite often there will be more than one researcher making these calls for people to drop what they’re doing and appear on radio or television, so there are multiple cals happening and messages being left, for people to appear.

Now that’s all understandable and above board but here comes the interesting bit. When I find time to call them back, they may occasionally apologise that they no longer need me as they’ve confirmed with someone else, and I appreciate that very much as it saves my time and everyone knows where they stand. They don’t have to field my communication and I can go back to my work. However, as happened recently, when I call back and go through the many questions the researcher has and lengthy conversation about the topic so that they can gauge that I’m not drunk, off my face on prescription medication or unable to string a coherent sentence together, the researcher becomes very excited that I’d be perfect to appear and they’re very keen to have me on their show… then there will come an awkward, clumsy part of the conversation where the researcher is obviously being given information by someone else; perhaps another researcher or the editor, that they’ve found someone else, or already confirmed someone else. Instead of saying that, the researcher will hurriedly have to put the phone down and apologise for needing to call me back in a moment and when they do, they tell me this (and it’s always this same line): “Hello, Jez? I’m sorry but we’ve had some breaking news so we won’t be needing you for that story as we have to cover this new breaking story”…

That’s fine and I sometimes will tune in, anticipating to see a building collapse with hundreds trapped, or a lottery winner who has bought all of Oxford Street, or a cat that’s been found who looks like Lloyd Grossman, or the Prime Minister who is about to declare war but instead… nothing. Nothing that’s breaking at all. Ever. It was just an attempt to get on side with me so they could ditch the call.

You see, we know when someone isn’t telling the truth and although there are a number of things you can look out for, such as pupil dilation, a change in their normal communication pattern, speeding up over words, touching of the face and an awkwardness about their body language, the most significant thing we all can experience is a lack of sincerity and humanity. The problem when we experience this is that all trust and honesty that has been built with that individual is eroded. We can maintain relationships and in fact strengthen them by admitting when we don’t know an answer, haven’t got the required skills or by offering a truthful response. Because it demonstrates your humanity and, as the old sales cliche goes: people buy people.

[PODCAST INTERVIEW] Getting Them To Deliver Excellent Customer Service

Final_TBE_Jez's Autograph_Banana copyFinally, something on the internet for FREE!


I was interviewed by the charming Abraham Venismach recently for his new podcast series all about upping the customer service game and how to deliver excellent levels of service.

You can listen to the interview again here.

Abraham has interviewed the likes of Shep Hyken for this series and is sharing some absolutely golden advice and strategies for

Mork Calling Orson – Coaching Changes Behaviour and Develops Higher Performance But Only When It’s Good…


“Improving your own behaviour is really quite simple” according to The Behaviour Expert, Jez Rose

Jane is not her real name; I’ve changed it to protect her identity. But her story is real.

Jane is 53 and the Vice President of a multi-national telecommunications company. She found a coach on the internet, while doing some late night searching for some direction in her life. During what she describes as a “moment of weakness”, she found herself contemplating what all the rush, the pressure and the stress was really all about. She didn’t dream to be this person. Yes she had money; she earn good money. But she worked long hours, travelled extensively and being away from home; from her husband, her children and her pets, always jarred with her. There was a constant sense of battling male egos and no matter how senior she was by title, she always felt like she had to fight to be heard and taken seriously, which she always doubted that she ever was.

So Jane signed up to a coach, which she said helped enormously – for a few weeks. The coach wanted to speak with Jane weekly but at the end of the call, Jane began to feel that she had more questions and a greater sense of unknowing; a deeper sense of confusion than she had when the calls began. “So many questions and very little practical advice began to take its toll”, Jane recalls.

“I needed help with clarity, focusing and some practical advice on how to better manage myself and my colleagues at work because I instinctively knew that my own uncertainty, anxieties and lack of confidence was affecting my behaviour in my job.” As the open-ended questions continued, Jane began to give up and cancelled her coaching plan. So it was with somewhat of a surprise for Jane to hear me speak at her company conference, when I mentioned my coaching clients and that “improving your behaviour and developing higher performance is really quite simple.”

It’s not necessarily easy – but it is simple. Only, if it were that simple, you’d do it yourself, right? You’d be

An open letter to Robin Williams and what his death means for the rest of us


Robin Williams was the embodiment of the funny bone – has his death given those suffering with depression a voice?

This letter accompanies this episode of TBE TV, which is a special tribute edition to Robin Williams.

Dear Robin,

I wanted to say thank you – and goodbye.

I doubt you will remember me but we did meet once and I was fortunate enough to work alongside you. Throughout my life you never failed to make me laugh and throughout the most impressionable period of my life you were an inspiration for me. You made me laugh and you made me cry. None more so than now did you make me cry. But this isn’t about me.

I tried to write this to you yesterday, on the day I heard about your death – but I couldn’t. So I went for a walk with my dogs; something which forces time to myself and allows quiet reflection. As I was walking through the fields, I felt slightly removed. Removed from the world which my dogs were enjoying; running around chasing each other, darting in and out of the river, splashing and having fun. Removed from society a bit, I guess. I’m feeling removed from fun – from life. As I walk through the beautiful Northamptonshire countryside in England, which I’m so fortunate enough to live in, the sun is slowly fading behind the trees. The fields are a beautiful lush green and the trees are a myriad of different colours of green. The stillness is palpable. There is a natural beauty to my surroundings, in every sense of the word, and the isolation from the rush of everyday life; from people and machines, is both refreshing and enrapturing. The  gentle breeze rustles the leaves of the trees.

And I’m feeling removed as I think of you and your tragic death. Tragic for you and for your family – and for me and millions of others around the world.

In itself that feeling of being removed from that moment in which my dogs are enjoying so intently, as I look on, and feeling removed from everyone else’s lives; from life, is an insight into what it’s like to

[MAGAZINE ARTICLE] Everything Speaks – can we positively change our behaviour? Jez is guest columnist for the Open University Society Matters


Jez Rose discusses how simple it is to positively change our behaviour but warns of the consequences.

I was asked to write an article for the Open University’s online magazine Society Matters about whether it is possible to positively change human behaviour in a simple way.

It is and if we understand why we do the things we do and how to change them, we can, I believe, make a greater impact on the world for the better. It isn’t just about larger scale, grand things – it’s the little things that can have a big impact. Everything speaks.

Click here to read the article on the OU website.

Jez Rose is an award-winning behaviour change consultant working with organisations worldwide. For more information and free resources to actively change behaviour in your organisation and develop higher performance, visit

[NEWSPAPER ARTICLE] The Blueprint for a Great Customer Experience – How Delivering Great Customer Experiences Could Mean Big Business – Jez’s comment in The Daily Telegraph


Jez Rose speaks to The Daily Telegraph’s Business Reporter about why delivering great customer experiences could mean big business.

Journalist Natasha Clark has written an article for Business Reporter on what makes for a great customer experience. Business Reporter is distributed with The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph.

Investigating the growing trends that could boost your business’s customer experience, Natasha called me to find out why customers like them so much. Here’s what I had to say:

“Customer service has sadly become a standard term for meeting customer expectations and nothing more. Great customer service should always be experiential; it’s about giving the customer what they want and even surprising them with extra touches which help to demonstrate how valuable the customer is to the brand.

Effective service should respond to the innate human desires to be wanted, valued and respected and if all service interactions are based on the notion of every customer wearing an imaginary sign which reads: “make me feel special”, brands will benefit from turning customers into loyal fans. Delivering great service is not difficult and need not be expensive either. The key, however, is not in the delivery of customer service training but in motivating and inspiring staff to want to deliver great service in the first place. Only when everyone in the organisation understands why delivering great service is important will brands get better compliance: don’t simply invite suggestions from colleagues as to how service could be improved but have them share their own positive and negative experiences from when they themselves were a customer. Learn from these bad examples and see if it’s possible to implement the positive ones.  

Great customer experiences are those which surprise and delight us. For example, instead of simply putting goods into a carrier bag, they are placed in a card bag, with tissue paper and a sticker to close it. If in a restaurant, the offer of tea and coffee at the end of the meal is not charged for and when requesting assistance from someone customer facing, they go out of their way to help you, even if it’s “not their job”. The unexpected things and the small things are often those that make the biggest difference.”

[RADIO INTERVIEW] Michael Rosen Speaks to Jez on BBC Radio 4’s Word of Mouth

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Michael Rosen invites Jez Rose onto his Word of Mouth show for BBC Radio 4, to discuss the similarities of how we bring up children and dogs.

The one that got away! We forgot about this interview! A while ago now Michael Rosen came to Jez’s house to interview Jez about the similarities between animal and human behaviour and what we can learn about training animals to change our own behaviour. The show was part of Michael’s Word of Mouth series for BBC Radio 4 and you can listen

[RADIO INTERVIEW] Jez on All in the Mind on BBC Radio 4 with Raj Persaud

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Raj Persaud invites Jez Rose to discuss and demonstrate the art of persuasion.

A blast from the past, someone just found this link to Jez on the BBC Radio 4 show All in the Mind with Raj Persaud. The subject of the show was the art of persuasion and Jez was

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