It been an absolute age since I published a guest post here, so I’m going to remedy that straight away. This week’s post is from Jon Gordon, speaker and author of a number of books including The No Complaining Rule. Over to you, Jon…
Smiling is important. Eye contact matters. Patience is essential. Being warm and friendly is a must. And providing a positive emotional experience for your customers is a priority.
But these are not the greatest of customer service strategies. Ironically the greatest of all strategies has nothing to do with customers and everything to do with employees.
The Greatest Strategy is this: Great customer service beings with being employee focused first and customer focused second. If you treat your employees well, they will treat their customers well.
Too often businesses, hospitals, restaurants and organizations focus all their energy on the customer while ignoring the very employees that serve their customers. This may work in the short run but eventually employees become tired, burned out, negative and resentful.
Just the other day I was speaking at a hospital and was told that they were doing patient satisfaction surveys as a way to improve nurse performance. “What about nurse satisfaction surveys,” I asked. “No we’re not doing that,” they said. The problem was clear. Measuring patient satisfaction will not make nurses more energized, positive and attentive.
Patient satisfaction will go up when nurse satisfaction goes up.
I have found that organizations who deliver the best service also have the best culture where employees are valued, listened to and cared for and in turn these employees value, care for and serve their customers.
Best Buy, for example, started to measure the engagement of their employees and in the process saw service and profits improve. T-Mobile dramatically improved and transformed their customer service when they improved the culture in their call centers by listening to their employees. Southwest Airlines has built their success on the foundation of an employee-first culture.
Of course we need to train our employees to do all the things that make for a great customer experience.
There are great books on the essentials of creating a great customer experience.
But most of all remember if you model great service, your people will share it.
So, if you want your team to serve, serve them.
If you want your people to care, care about them.
If you want your team to love their work, love them.
If you want your employees to be their best, give them your best.
If you take care of your people they will take care of your customers.
About Jon Gordon:
This post is a guest post by Jon Gordon. Jon is the Wall Street Journal and international bestselling author of a number of books including The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work and Team with Positive Energy, and his latest, The Seed: Finding Purpose and Happiness in Life and Work. Learn more at www.JonGordon.com. Follow Jon on Twitter @JonGordon11 or Facebook www.facebook.com/jongordonpage.