Do you ever wonder what would happen if you went undercover in your company and worked with your employees? What would you discover about your employees’ work ethic and their attitude toward customer service? Would your employees follow your directions and treat customers with appreciation or would they break all your “rules” about customer service? Do they understand your “rules”, or do they see your example of how to treat customers?
These are interesting questions, and they should be considered by every business owner who has employees of any sort. Appreciation Marketing is the philosophy of any business which understands that customers who are treated fairly and as human beings instead of account numbers will help the business succeed. They will remain loyal, and they will tell others what a great experience that they have in their relationship with the business. Thus, their referrals will bring more customers to the business, making it more successful.
While this is a great philosophy for the business owner to have, it will have no positive effect if your employees will not follow your “rules” to apply Appreciation Marketing in their dealings with customers. No matter what instructions you may have placed into effect, your employees will pay more attention to the example that you yourself set in your dealings with customers. Set the example, and your employees will follow, but make sure that your examples are the ones that you want your employees to follow. Be a leader, not a boss.
You must be very clear when you train new employees or retrain ones who may not understand exactly what you want done within the realm of customer relationships. You must know what takes place between employees and customers when you are not present. If you conduct your business in an open manner, treating customers as valued assets of your business, you will set an example that should be easy to follow. You must communicate your methods to your employees, specifying exactly the responsibility and authority that each has.
Communication with employees is essential, both by instructions and example. I believe that if you hire intelligent employees, give them the instruction, training, and equipment that they need to do their jobs, and then give them the authority to fulfill their responsibilities, they will be happier, more confident, and professional, performing as you wish. If your example is in line with your instructions, and you conduct your business and personal lives professionally, there will be no conflicts.
Of course, if you find out there is someone who cannot follow instructions, either due to the inability to learn or to care about your business success, them you must deal with that problem. An employee who does not understand, or does not care about Appreciation Marketing, should not be allowed to continue to destroy your business relationships, whether those relationships are with customers or anyone else.
Appreciation Marketing can turn customers into clients, non-customers into referral partners, and everyone into relationships which benefit all parties. You must lead by example, require your employees to follow your leadership, and foster an atmosphere of client service that surpasses all other businesses. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@SOC4Now.com, or call me at 360-314-8691. You should not have to go “undercover” in your business to discover what type of client relationships your business has. You should also appreciate your professional employees as must as you do your clients.