Being a member of Focus Groups you would know employee job satisfaction is one of the key goals of all successful companies. Happy employees are more loyal to the company and its vision. They go the extra mile to achieve company goals.
Dissatisfied workers experience lower productivity in the workplace, poorer performance, more job stress, and higher turnover rates. Moreover, low job satisfaction can result in low morale and low loyalty to the company itself and to any outside Focus Groups.
Job satisfaction is defined as the extent to which employees feel self-motivated and satisfied with their job. Employee satisfaction covers the basic concerns and needs of employees, and is essential to the success of any business. Job satisfaction is a combination of intrinsic (kind of work) and extrinsic (working condition) factors. Salary, promotion, work-life balance, recognition and appraisals are important factors to be considered in employee satisfaction.
Make strategic decisions to create a culture of engagement and satisfaction. Engaged employees have a strong sense of purpose and leadership. They add value by pushing limits, driving growth and innovation. Employee satisfaction is one of the key metric that can help determine overall health of an organization, which is why many organizations employ regular surveys to measure and track employee satisfaction over time. As a Focus Groups you would understand that this is one way to assess whether your team is happy and engaged at work. It is critical for employee retention. Sadly, CulturalManagement has observed that this has decreased significantly over the past twenty years.
At CulturalManagement we guide you on how to easily collect and understand employee feedback to create an action plan that works. Few ways a company can improve employee job satisfaction:
- Provide a positive working environment.
- Rewards and recognition.
- Make work-life balance a priority.
- Develop skills and potential of workforce.
- Create open and honest communication channels.
It's popular to tout customer-centricity, yet it's very difficult to consistently demonstrate. The word centric means having a specific thing as the focus of attention and efforts. Customer-centric means that concerns other than the customer's well-being are in the background while the customer stays in the foreground.
That may seem simple enough, yet reality proves the elusiveness of customer-centricity. In Accenture's Delivering the Promise study, 75% of executives viewed their customer service as above-average, while 59% of their customers reported their experience with these companies' service as somewhat to extremely dissatisfying. Likewise, in CMO Council's Customer Affinity study, half the companies said they are extremely customer-centric, but only a tenth of their customers agreed.
The building blocks of customer-centric culture are communication, skills, accountability and systems.
1. Communication. The vision and values that top management communicates, both verbally and behaviorally, set the tone and direction. What top management focuses on guides the thinking and efforts of the entire organization. The key is consistency: at every opportunity, continually communicate the necessity of making it easier and nicer for customers to get and use solutions. Consistency occurs in formal and informal meetings, written correspondence, external messages, and in every business process and every management ritual such as performance reviews, annual operating plans, performance dashboards, etc. Consistency builds trust and passion, which are necessary ingredients for true customer-centricity.
At Amazon.com, founder Jeff Bezos once began a meeting by announcing that an empty chair at the table represented the customer. Throughout the meeting, the executives were compelled to include the customer in the discussion, as if present. This became a habit - the group's way of thinking and doing.
2. Skills. Customer-centric values and vision must be supported by proficiency in related technical and soft skills. Examine competency requirements for everyone - not just customer-facing roles - relative to your customer-centric values and vision. This includes channel partners, suppliers, and other external entities. Proficiency is the vital link between strategy and execution.
At Nordstrom, employees are selected on their capabilities to anticipate and meet people's needs. They're encouraged to try new approaches to selling and customer service, with the mantra use good judgment in all situations giving them a tremendous sense that they're trusted to always do right by the customer.
3. Accountability. What gets rewarded gets done - whether the rewards are tangible or intrinsic. Interestingly, intrinsic rewards have proven to be more powerful in adjusting a group's ways of thinking and doing. Risk tolerance and penalties also determine the degree to which customer-centricity takes root. Above all, monitor cause-and-effect and also perceptions of fairness in terms of logic and equity; these elements are pivotal to success.
At Enterprise Rent-a-Car, customer sentiment is measured at the rental office level. Only employees in offices that score at or above the overall company average are eligible for promotion, raises or bonuses. At EMC, achieving the target for their leading indicator of customer sentiment, system availability, is a go/no-go determinant of the bonus for the entire company.
4. Systems. Systems-thinking means acknowledging the big picture and linkages between its components. Scrutinize your business policies and procedures and tools for their contribution or detraction from the goal of making it easier and nicer for customers to get and use solutions. Systems include formal and informal inter-department communication and interactions and handoffs, and connections outside the enterprise.
At Dell, SVP of customer service Dick Hunter asked employees to send him notes about the inconsistent and dumb things the company was doing. Combining this input with customer's verbatim comments to their call center led to significant changes in the customer experience.
Motives are at the heart of true or false customer-centricity. Customer-centricity as priority number one must permeate the entire business, and be un-challenged by other concerns as the organization's primary focus of attention and efforts. All other goals are more likely to fall into place with consistent customer-centricity.
Part of the appeal of customer-centricity is that it takes very little business acumen to grasp its core concept. Focus intensely on customers, align your products or services with their interests, and voila: a customer - centric culture is born. Simple, right? Not quite.
Becoming a truly customer-centric organization is perhaps one of the most difficult transitions an organization can make, fraught with hidden obstacles and unanticipated challenges. Here are three potential roadblocks on the path to a customer-centric strategy, and how to get around them.
Failing to understand your most valuable customer
A customer - centric strategy is only as good as its customers. You cant let the average customer dictate what you do, says Robert Duboff, CEO of Hawk Partners LLC and coauthor of the book Market Research Matters. Generally speaking, Duboff says, 20 percent of a company's customer base generates 80 percent of its profits. Given that split, its imperative to put your most valuable customers at the heart of your approach.
Identifying those customers need not take exhaustive research and complicated measures. It can be a fairly straightforward process, as it is with the Net Promoter Score, or NPS, a metric developed by Bain & Co.s Fred Reichheld. As set forth in The Ultimate Questionwritten by Reichheld and published by Harvard Business Pressthe NPS approach consists of one simple question: On a scale of one to 10, would you recommend us to your friends?
Based on the answer to that question, customers are segmented into three categories: promoters, who actively champion a particular product to their friends and colleagues; passives, who are lukewarm about the product; and detractors, the opposite of promoters. A given company's score is simply the difference between its number of promoters and its number of detractors.
NPS has proven to be a powerful tool for such companies as General Electric Capital Solutions, which has used it not only to identify customers that are already valuable promoters but to gain insights into how it can convert detractors. For a business like GE Capital Solutions, which serves more than 1 million very diverse customers in many different industries, NPS helps us better understand what our customers are feeling and how we can improve their experience with us, says Stephen White, a spokesperson for GE Capital.
Failing to support your external customer - centric strategy with an internal customer - centric strategy.
Speaking of valuable customers, what about that most priceless customer of all your employee?
While most companies aren't in the habit of regarding their employees as customers, those seeking to instill a customer-centric culture should rethink their stance, argues Elaine Berke, president of Westport, MA based EBI Consulting, which specializes in helping organizations develop customer-centric strategies. Customer - centricity needs to come from the inside out, says Berke. Leadership must avoid a double standard that makes it OK for managers to argue with or demean staff while still being courteous and considerate to external customers.
Consider the case of the world-renowned Johns Hopkins University Hospital. In developing a comprehensive Service Excellence initiative aimed at boosting its level of patient care, the hospital included employee satisfaction as a core component of the program. The hospital conducted an extensive survey to gauge employee concerns that turned up such simple, actionable insights as making it a point to compliment co-workers and instituting criticism - free no negativity days.
Customer-centric organizations value and respect internal customers as much as external customers, says Berke. Like the old saying goes, If you're not serving a customer, you're serving someone who is.
Failure to identify the moment of truth
Companies spend considerable time and resources developing metrics for processes, execution and other day-to-day functions but often overlook defining their moments of truth those points at which a customer interacts with a company's product or service and forms an impression.
Companies are usually very good at creating metrics around [such procedures as] production deliverables but have a much harder time knowing how to create and measure standards relating to the quality of service being delivered, Keith Bailey of Sterling Consulting Group says.
In defining a company's moments of truth, Bailey suggests looking at three different angles quality of product, quality of procedures and quality of relationships. Taking a hotel as an example, the quality of the product would be the cleanliness and comfort of the rooms. The quality of procedures would be such factors as how it long it takes to check in or how long customers wait for room service. The quality of relationship would be the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff.
Considering each angle separately allows a company to isolate the negative moments of truth within each and develop a game plan for turning them into positive experiences. Procter & Gamble, for example, identified its moment of truth as that instant when a shopper picks up one of its products and decides whether or not to purchase its decision the customer makes in an average of six seconds. The company has overhauled its marketing with that insight in mind, creating a global First Moment of Truth business team designed to win over the customer in that moment.
There are as many different customer-centric approaches as there are customers, and each has its own unique challenges, but the road to a truly customer-centric strategy always begins with the same steps.