Take Daily Action to Improve Customer Service Experiences
Do you ever notice how employees usually start a job, coming into their first day of work bright-eyed and enthusiastic? Then as time goes by, that enthusiasm burns away to the point that it’s just another nine-to-five trudge to get through what they feel is another mindless, menial workday?
What happens here? Why is the standard to go downward into complacency, effortlessness, mediocrity, and trying to skate by while only doing the minimum amount of work possible? Why not upward into learning, growth, enthusiasm, passion, and a strong work ethic? We’re going to go over that, as well as the mindset necessary to overcome it.
The Workday Blues
The average person wants to do the least amount of work in order to obtain their paycheck. When they get a new job they’re happier because it’s fresh, new, and it could be higher paying than their old job, which is definitely a bonus… but at some point it stops mattering. At some point it’s “just another job”, filled with – in their eyes – incompetent coworkers who don’t understand them, a stupid boss who doesn’t know how hard the job really is, and a paycheck that’s less than what they’re worth.
People inherently grow bored with the familiar, and so they decide to acclimate and complain rather than strive for new heights. This isn’t to say all people are like this, so don’t start thinking your workforce hates you and are all skimping on their duties as much as they can.
The Winner’s Edge
Some employees never really fall into this undesired rut of doing the least amount of work as possible. They’re certainly less common, but they’re model employees who should be recognized for their efforts. That said, what sets them apart from those who trudge through the workday? There are a myriad of factors, but it usually comes down to a basic principle that can be referred to as “the winner’s edge”.
The winner’s edge is something employed by people who do something small each day to improve something about themselves. If it’s somebody on a customer service job, then they learn their job a little better each day, and over time adjust their personality and mannerisms to be more receptive, efficient, flexible, and appropriate to the customers they interact with, the employees the work with, and the place of work itself.
Getting employees to improve their performance is getting them to adopt the principle of the winner’s edge. If they can improve one thing about their workday, something small, and make small changes accordingly in a positive direction, they’ll be a remarkable employee in only a few months. This can be achieved through incentives such as bonuses, classes that are actually motivating – none of that typical boring corporate garbage – and genuine specific praise. Not GENERAL praise like, “Good job, Bev!” but something more direct, like, “Great job, Bev, on handling that tough client just now. You worked through that very well!”
Show your employees that you care about them. Treat them, reward them, and they’ll reward you. Teach them about the winner’s edge, let them know you’re paying attention to them for all the hard work they’re doing, for learning and growing a little by taking daily action to incorporate and develop something – however small – from the workplace.
One last thing: Remember, there will always be workers who don’t care, who don’t want to work, who are lazy, and who just want the work day to end so they can collect their paycheck. This is really tough to avoid, so if you employ plenty of people, expect this to be an occurrence. As for the rest, just remember to value them, to treat them like gold. Your personality and treatment will trickle down to the customers, and happy customers almost always translates to more money for your business.
The main difficulty I see with employee morale rest solely on management. Employees can only self motivate for so long before they realize the job will not get any better. Incentives can help, but that is not a long-term fix.
Today’s manager will not invest the time and effort in employee development. Many of my colleagues do not have the time to invest in employee development and that is a shame. Not only is this a shame, but also a missed opportunity.
You’d be surprised at the level of productivity you can gain through constructing a good employee development program. It has worked for me with all the great people I have managed.
This is exactly how call center employees need to be treated by management. Each day is a new day, fresh slate, new opportunities, and talented individuals that need to be nurtured in order that not only they succeed, but your customers are well cared for.
A well engineered call center, runs smoothly with or without management presence.
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