It is one thing to say that your organization values the customer experience as its top priority. It is entirely another thing to be truly committed to it. Many organizations pay some serious lip service to the notion that they value the customer above everything else including sales and product. A closer investigation into daily business operations, however, reveals that sales and product still drive the business much more strongly than addressing the customer’s wants and needs.
Most often the problem lies with corporate leadership not practicing what they preach. They simply don’t have enough trust in their employees to relinquish a bit of control. Leadership needs to understand the value in committing to the customer, not the sale.
Far too often ineffective leaders manage with fear as their guiding principle. They spend too much time reminding subordinates what will happen if they don’t comply with written policies and procedures. The problem is that by enforcing penalties for non-compliance, what results is a team that provides the lowest amount of service possible to remain in compliance and avoid penalty. This sort of corporate culture does not encourage teams to go above and beyond for customer. If any sort of elite customer experience will happen, it will be because of the team member’s inherent drive and have nothing to do with corporate culture.
Forward thinking leaders of today realize that much better results are achieved by using a commitment to providing an excellent customer experience through employee empowerment and positive reinforcement. When team members are empowered to go the extra mile for customers, and are given the freedom from penalties to avoid non-compliance, they generally respond with pride and perform much closer to an elite level.
It’s all about instilling a commitment culture in your organization. In order to accomplish such an attitude, however, leaders need to relax the reigns a little on such tight control over their team. They need to stop worrying about the one or two employees who may abuse the system, and instead concentrate on the vast majority of employees who will respond with superlative results. Very quickly, the stars of your team will emerge, and the bad apples will be discovered. It will be up to you to decide what to do with the bad apples after that.
The commitment culture goes far beyond the need to empower employees though. It also has to be recognized on equal par with sales. If rewards are given for sales, then an appropriate way to measure elite customer service and reward the contribution accordingly needs to be recognized. The rewards can be monetary, which usually provides the best results. But, they can also be non-monetary. Time-off, awards, and mere recognition for a job well-done can be very purposeful rewards for excellent service that will encourage a culture of commitment.
Sometimes rewards aren’t necessary and just making it fun for an employee to contribute can be a perfect way to encourage the commitment culture. The Ritz Carlton organization is known for exactly that sort of example. Not only do they encourage the customer experience with their employees, but they also actively empower it by giving them $2,000 per guest to spend, every day to make their guest happy. Of course, this is only provided to guests that have an issue or some form of complaint ongoing. Still, empowerment like this is proof positive that Ritz Carlton is 100% committed to providing an excellent customer experience, and it’s easy for their employees to see.
Snappy provides customer support software that quickly makes a bold and definitive statement about your commitment to an excellent customer experience. We are so convinced that you will love our software that we are offering a free 30-day trial period now. If you’re still not sure and want to find out more information first, please contact us today and we will be glad to speak with you.
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