Over the next few weeks we will be delivering a series of posts demonstrating the ROI opportunities available through your Employee Engagement program.
Here is ROI Opportunity #1: Create an emotional connection with your employees.
When you invest in your employee’s engagement, it helps to show them you care about them beyond just the job they do. It shows that you care about their overall happiness and well-being and that you want to recognize and reward them for their efforts.
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I think fun is a serious issue.
So, answer me this — do you have fun at work? Do you use humor in your daily interactions? If not, why not?
I’m not talking about putting a red nose on your face and going around honking a horn. What I am talking about is, do you see the fun, humor and silliness that occurs and not take you and what you are doing so seriously?
Last week, I talked about the example of Southwest Airlines and how they are fun and friendly but also totally professional and safe.
If you think about it, most people who are reading this and most people who are at work today and not reading this have to be there not because they want to, but because they need the income to support their family.
I believe most people who are working around the world today could think of something “more fun” that they would rather be doing.
But here is a killer question for you — for the vast majority of us who have to be there anyway, why not make it as fun and as fulfilling as possible?
There have been all sorts of studies that show the benefits of laughing, the benefits of humor and the importance of de-stressing stressful situations.
I think we would all agree that in today’s hyper-paced world a little extra fun, one or two extra laughs or doing something that is fulfilling for yourself, a colleague or a customer is welcomed!
I personally always try to use humor to make people stop and think differently. I will typically use humor to try to defuse any stressful situation either personally or professionally.
For those reading this who know me, there is really no difference between work and play — I behave pretty much the same way, except when I am sleeping. I think that reinforces my authenticity and my ability to leverage all seven of the personalization principles harmoniously.
Let me tell you how these principles have affected me personally — I believe working on and developing these principles and characteristics have allowed me to build deeply intimate customer relationships and deeply intimate relationships with co-workers that enable our team to deliver extraordinary results for our customers while learning, growing and having fun along the way.
My hope for you is that you see the value in incorporating these principles into your daily actions.
I promise you, if you commit and do the proper follow up and reinforcement with these principles you will be amazed at the transformational results that will follow.
Remember all 7 of the Personalization Principles are equally important and interdependent. You must exhibit all 7 of the Personalization Principles in order to thrive in this age of technology. Click below to recap all of the principles:
Click here to download the above graphic: Fun
Your talent wants learning and development opportunities that make them more marketable today and in the future! Give them the skills and competencies to excel with your Learning program.
Click here to download the graphic above: Learning Never Exhausts the Mind
Friendly people rule! Mean people suck.
As a customer, why would you ever give your money to a place of business that has rude, mean or inhospitable people? One rude person can ruin years of loyalty. Friendly people can create decades of loyalty.
Why is it that Southwest Airlines has had such great performance since their founding days and still continues to excel today? They figured out early that if they hired friendly people they could train them for the specific role that they needed.
What I have learned and what I believe the best leaders have learned is that you cannot train friendly. I think friendly and the values of being nice are ingrained or not at a very early age.
I think in business and in life the people who have achieved the most success, the most happiness, the most peace, the most prosperity and the best health, typically surround themselves with other fun, friendly human beings.
Being nice and friendly creates positivity and abundance. Being rude or mean shuts down creativity and creates a mentality of scarcity.
Over the past 6 weeks, as we have talked about the powerful Personalization Principles (#1 Authenticity, #2 Hospitality, #3 Empathy, #4 Commitment, #5 Competency, plus stay tuned for #7 next week) the principle of Friendliness is one that takes good assessment and good recruitment to ensure that you don’t let mean people through your firewall.
You may ask, “How can we have a business of only friendly people?” I would counter with asking, “How could you not?” What I am talking about is ensuring you have a team of people who care about other human beings and love is part of their daily lexicon.
I think it is totally cool that Southwest Airline’s stock symbol is LUV. They show love and differentiate themselves with fun, friendly people. But here is an important note — just because they are fun and friendly does not mean that they are not totally professional and safe, which is what you want when getting in an airplane. What they are not is corporate, stiff, starched shirts, who read the same monologue or hit the same tape that you have heard a million times.
Nice is the new black today. Friendly wins. Rude and mean lose every single time.
If you want your customers to stay longer, buy more and refer others it is critically important that you and your team espouse and ooze friendliness with each and every interaction.
Hey, you leaders out there — that means being friendly each and every time you interact with your talent too.
Click here to download the graphic above: Friendly
When it comes to learning in the workplace one of the most important elements to create sustained change and exceptional customer service is repetition and practice. Repetition and practice help you reinforce your learning in your organization.
Repetition and practice creates more precision, more productivity and more profit.
Click here to download the graphic above: Repetition & Profit
Last week, I wrote about the personalization principle of Commitment, and the importance that commitment plays in creating fast, friendly, hassle free interactions. (Plus check out the other Personalization Principles here: Authenticity, Hospitality, and Empathy.)
But let’s face it — if you don’t have the competence, meaning the skills and ability to excel in your role, then your commitment will soon suffer.
Too many times in the customer service world, we are required to interact with someone who is friendly, who seems committed while they smile and tell you they do not have the ability to help you.
I think as a customer there is nothing more frustrating than someone smiling at you while telling you they cannot help you.
Competence and ability are role specific. Meaning, as a leader it is important to understand the need to put you and your team in a position to win with the customer.
If you are a leader, you need to enable your team with the skills and development that ensure they have the competence and ability to solve customer problems.
If you are an individual contributor, it is critically important for you to communicate what skills, competencies and development you need in order to excel with your internal and external customers.
Competence today does not mean you will be competent in the future. To be a winner in the personalization economy requires that you are continually learning, continually providing development opportunities and continually enhancing the competence and ability of everyone who serves customers from the inside out.
Click here to download the image above: Competency
If you want your talent to be engaged and enabled every day, and create exceptional customer experiences at every touch point, then you must create organizational alignment with a incentive program personalized for all of your stakeholders.
Click here to download the above graphic: Touch Point
As we explore the synchronicity and necessary harmony between the seven Personalization Principles (click here to read Principle 1 Authenticity, Principle 2 Hospitality, Principle 3 Empathy), the answer to the question, are you committed, is paramount to your personalization and customer service success.
You can be authentic, you can be empathetic, you can be hospitable, you can show all the ability and competence and you can be fun and friendly, however if you are not committed then all the rest of those principles lack efficacy.
When I ask the question; Are you committed it means are you willing to do what it takes, no matter what?
- Are you committed to your team?
- Are you committed to your company?
- Are you committed to your vision?
- Are you committed to living your values each and every day even when it is uncomfortable or inconvenient?
- Are you committed to keeping your promises?
Remember, there is a huge difference between commitment and interest.
One of my favorite analogies to demonstrate the difference between commitment and interest is that of a runner. An interested runner wakes up in the morning and he or she has planned a five mile run for the day. But, when the runner wakes up they see it is raining. So, they roll over and go back to bed because they lack commitment. They are just an interested runner. A committed runner wakes up the same morning, sees that it is raining, puts on their waterproof hat, rain gear, straps on their shoes and runs their five miles.
It is easy in life and in customer service when everything is bright and sunny. The question is — are you so committed that you will show up in a positive, productive fashion even if things are cloudy or rainy?
When the chips are down, committed people win because they are willing to do whatever it takes. Unfortunately, interested people lose. In the business world they will be commoditized.
My hope for you is that you are committed and not interested.
Click here to download a printable version of the graphic above: Commitment 7PP
If you want your entire organization to be engaged, it is critical that you engage all of your stakeholders in a personalized way.
Here are a few ways to engage your sales partners with an incentive program:
Read more about what exactly organizational engagement is in my blog here.
Click here to download a printable version of the above graphic: Engage with Incentives