Businesses today are starting to realize the value of quality service. Good customer service can be the difference between a loyal customer base and constant customer churn. So how can companies become truly customer-focused? According to Shep Hyken, author of “The Loyal Customer” and “The Amazement Revolution,” organizations must first focus within — creating a company culture that engages, fulfills and, thus, retains employees.
“What’s happening on the inside of an organization is being felt on the outside by a customer,” says Hyken.
According to Hyken, companies must create a culture of “FUN”:
Fulfillment: Hyken points to Brian Keeley, CEO of Baptist Health South Florida, as a good example of someone who tries to create a fulfilling experience for his employees. “One of his mottos is, ‘We want to become a destination employer,’ meaning, when that when people work there they will never want to go anywhere else,” Hyken says. “He recognizes that when you have an employee who is fulfilled, they will in return treat the people they work with, as well as the customers, better.”
Unique: Everyone has a unique set of skills and interests, and employers should use them to their advantage. It both helps keep employees engaged in what they do best, and also helps company productivity. “If an employee has a unique set of skills or experience, we want to exploit that,” Hyken says. “We want to figure out a way to put what someone is really good and passionate about into our system.”
Next: Employers should also always think about what’s next for an employee. This, again, helps with engagement and retention. “Are they excited about the next big project, are they excited about coming back next day?,” says Hyken. “I love it when someone says I am dead tired at the end of the day but when I get up in the morning I can’t wait to go back to work.”
Company culture can define an organization — just look to companies like Southwest Airlines and Whole Foods. In field service, it is especially important to establish strong values and practices that extend beyond headquarter doors. The customer certainly notices, says Hyken.