The business world is rapidly changing. In this digital economy, businesses must cater to consumers on the cusp of fully embracing and demanding the Internet of Things. This makes for an environment in which businesses can end up struggling to stay afloat while delivering a viable product.
As a business owner and CEO focused on growth and longevity, I know I have a triple bottom line to account for: on the financial, environmental and social fronts. When I refer to social accountability, I mean not only giving back to the community but also factoring in ways to increase employee satisfaction, which in turn can translate into better serving customers. Without doing both things, a business likely won’t be sustainable.
That’s why I’ve made it my mission as a CEO to deliver the best experience ever -- for my customers and staff. I believe that if a business owner has engaged employees, satisfied customers will follow.
Leaders have a responsibility to create a company culture that's engaging and satisfying. Nonetheless, last year’s Gallup State of the Global Workplace report found only 29 percent of employees in the U.S. and Canada are engaged. While some people might find this statistic shocking, perhaps business leaders will be prompted to change their approach.
Typically if employees are good at performing a certain work role, they stick with it. There is nothing wrong with this, but what excites someone today won’t necessarily excite the person tomorrow. This is why companies need to stop confining employees to specific roles but rather let them explore and expand their interests.
This stategy may seem unconventional, but if implemented correctly, it can increase employee engagement. Employees rarely switch departments within an organization because once they excel at performing a certain role, their manager wants them to stay put. But what does that mean for the employee who has been working on the same team for the last three years. Sure, she may be an expert in a specific area, but is she still as engaged as she was at the start? To really succeed at their jobs and give customers the best experience, employees need to be passionate about what they are doing.
Encouraging employees to explore what interests them, whether a new position or a fresh project, will empower them to be more successful. The people who end up thriving and prospering in a job over the long term may well be those who were most excited about it not the ones with the most experience. This isn’t to say employers should encourage employees to hop around between departments every year. But if an employee has been with the company for a period of time and is a proven hard worker, it might be worthwhile to allow the person to try doing something new.
So what does this have to do with the customer? Engagement correlates to declines in absenteeism and turnover and also to increased customer service, productivity and sales. The last thing an employer wants to do is put an unengaged employee before a customer. Part of creating the best consumer experience is building a relationship in which clients feel comfortable and respected. To achieve that, help employees feel engaged, interested and satisfied with their jobs.
There's the phrase "happy wife, happy life," but for those working in the service industry it’s more like "happy worker, happy customer." Giving employees the opportunity to explore their interests within a company will not only help forge the best experience for them but will also create the best experience for customers.