Posts Tagged ‘Culture In the Workplace’

Internal customer service

Thursday, November 17th, 2016

When most people picture a customer, they naturally think of the person who buys a company’s products and services. Making that person’s life better and easier is a great way to think of customer service.

But what about internal customer service—the way employees interact with and support others in the company? The best companies make sure their internal customer service is on par with their external customer service.

Suppose you work in IT and somebody’s computer is down. Now they can’t deliver great external service. You might make it your own goal that “No one will be down more than one hour.” Internal service supports external service.

Internal customer service also sets the tone for employee engagement. Each phone call from a colleague should be answered with the same courteous, “How may I help you?” language and tone that external customers receive.

This also has a huge impact on employee engagement. We are the face of the company to each other. If we see a cold and uncaring face when we interact with other employees, we will each naturally come to see the company itself as cold and uncaring. It’s hard to stay engaged in your work when you see your company in that unflattering light.

Engagement is tied directly to productivity, of course, so It’s not just a matter of being “nice.” Upping your internal customer service game can make the difference between a company that founders on the rocks and smooth sailing.

Show Appreciation This Thanksgiving Week

Thursday, November 17th, 2016

It’s Thanksgiving week—a week where we show appreciation. And it’s a good time to remember that the people we work with are not perfect.

Our bosses? Not perfect. Our companies? Not perfect.

But, what an opportunity to appreciate the perfection within them, the wonderful things they do, and the caring they give.

Let me ask you this—if you were to sit down and ask yourself every morning, “What are three things I’m really appreciative of?” I suspect that you’ll find—if you force yourself to say something new every day—that the list would be UNLIMITED.

So today, go around to the people you appreciate, thank them for what they do. Thank your boss for the fact that you have a job. Thank your company for making sure you get a pay check every week. And be in that gracious spirit because the spirit of Thanksgiving is alive and well.

Learn to Say “No”

Sunday, January 4th, 2015

It happens every single day. Someone finds you out of nowhere and asks you to help them in some way or another. How do you say no?

First, realize that it is completely fine to say no. This alone is a big step for many people. But it should be obvious that when someone asks a yes/no question, there are (at least) two possible answers.

Suppose a client suggests that you come by her office for a conversation that would ordinarily take 10 minutes. But now, with the commute, you’re looking at an hour – and that’s an hour you cannot give up today.

Let the client know how eager you are to connect, and that you’re equally eager to help her avoid the required charge for out-of-office consulting. Suggest conducting this conversation over the webcam. Everybody wins.

Or perhaps Chris, from the cubicle next to yours, pokes his head around the corner in hopes that you can help him with a project he’s been assigned. If you can do it, great. But if you can’t, you really need to find a way to say that.

Make it clear that you appreciate his thinking of you, but that you will not be able to assist him until Tuesday, or whatever it may be. And if you can’t at all, just say that. With all due love, of course!

Commit yourself to tasks that are most profitable. Learn to say no to the rest.

Collaborate for Greatness

Monday, December 1st, 2014

There’s a common idea that great breakthroughs and accomplishments come from solitary geniuses and lone heroes.

Much more often, great things come to pass as a result of a consistent commitment to collaboration. Jump on board, and like the world itself, you can take advantage of the minds around you.

Network, mastermind, and brainstorm with driven people around you. Share your struggles, and let others help you navigate your way through the hurdles.

Commit yourself to maintaining an open mind. Sometimes the right answer may not sound right to you simply because you did not come up with it for yourself. But the power that you can harness by gathering these many minds is simply an opportunity you cannot pass up.

And remember, people love to help others who take the help and implement. That is the greatest complement to someone who reaches out to help.

The ultimate question

Sunday, August 10th, 2014

Business strategist Fred Reichheld wrote a landmark book on what he calls The Ultimate Question—“How likely are you to recommend us to a friend?”

By asking this question to customers and employees, companies can quickly learn who is a promoter, who is neutral, and who is detrimental to the well being of a company.

Those who answer the question with a nine or ten are considered “promoters,” people who help ensure the profits, growth, and overall health of a company. Sevens and eights are neutral. But if someone answers the question with a one through six, that person is a detractor, someone who will do harm to a business.

Everyone’s job in any company is to make sure that every customer is a nine or ten, and if not, to put a massive corrective action plan in place to make sure that customer moves into that zone of full support.

It also goes without saying that every staff member needs to also be in the nine to ten range. If you aren’t a promoter of the company you’re a part of, be a positive force to improve things, to make it a place you can be proud of. If that just isn’t possible, it might be time to consider moving on to a company you CAN fully support.