The secret

By Dilip Bhattacharjee, Bruce Jones and Francisco C. Ortega via http://blogs.hbr.org   Article

The Secret to Delighting Customers

Listen to employees. Want your employees to take great care of your customer? Start by taking great care of them. Treat them respectfully and fairly, of course, but also get involved in tackling their issues and needs. Establish mechanisms to listen to concerns, then address them. …

Hire for attitude, not aptitude — and then reinforce attitudeTo get friendly service, hire friendly people. Airline JetBlue has embedded this philosophy in its hiring process. To recruit frontline staff with a natural service bent, it uses group interviews. Watching how the applicants interact with one another enables hiring managers to assess their communication and people skills to an extent that wouldn’t be possible in a one-to-one setting. …

Give people purpose, not rules. Rules have their place, but they go only so far. To motivate employees and give meaning to their work, leading companies define their “common purpose”: a succinct explanation of the intended customer experience that resonates at an emotional level. When people are set clear expectations and trusted to do their jobs, they feel valued and empowered. They choose to go that extra mile through passion, not compliance. …

Tap into the creativity of your front line. Giving frontline employees responsibility and autonomy inspires them to do whatever they can to improve the customer experience. When they see a problem, they fix it without waiting to be asked. Frontline staff are also a rich source of customer insights. They can help leaders understand what customers want without the time and expense of market research.”

 

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