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How To Be a Genius: Apple's Secret Employee Training Manual

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Gizmodo: The "geniuses" who staff Apple Stores are widely perceived to be the most helpful in the tech industry, but how do they get that way? Gizmodo has obtained a copy of the secret training handbook used during Apple's two-week training program for new sales staff. The training sessions cover technical information, how to identify and respond to various customer emotions, words not to use and much more.

The training manual repeatedly emphasizes empathizing with customers. The manual instructs staff to use the "Three Fs: Feel, Felt, and Found. This works especially well when the customer is mistaken or has bad information." Here's an example:

Customer: This Mac is just too expensive.
Genius: I can see how you'd feel this way. I felt the price was a little high, but I found it's a real value because of all the built-in software and capabilities.

Other sections of the guide instruct them never to apologize for the company or the technology and never to use the words crash, hang, bug or problem. Geniuses are also encouraged to offer "fearless feedback" when they see other geniuses doing something incorrectly.

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