When I accepted my first Customer Service Executive position, it was disappointing to learn that employee morale was low and turnover was high in our customer care center. It didn’t take long to figure out why. When I met with the Sr. VP who previously held the position it was obvious that he was solely focused on driving cost down. To him everything was just a transaction and employees were a collateral expense to driving profits. I was shocked when he referred to our customer care associates as “butts in seats.” That explained everything including why our customer satisfaction scores were so low. I immediately started working on understanding employee issues, building trust and creating a work environment that valued and appreciated our associates.
Over time, and with a genuine focus on our employees, we significantly improved employee engagement which resulted in improved customer interactions, a significant increase in our customer satisfaction scores, reduced turnover and yes a culture of W.O.W. Richard Branson’s quote is spot on. Take care of your employees first and they will take care of your customers.
Creating a culture of service and excellence starts with engaging employees. Building trust, connecting employees to the mission, empowering them with skills and tools, developing their skills and recognizing their contributions are the foundation in creating a more engaging work environment. Once engaged, employees are more willing to put forth the discretionary effort needed to deliver Customer W.O.W.
Start your journey to Customer W.O.W. by engaging your workforce. Want to learn more about the five “must haves” for improving employee engagement? Visit Lulu Publishing and order your copy of “Employee Engagement. If Not Now, When?”