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You Can't Buy Customer Service or Employee Engagement

Every business extolls customer service. Mantras such as, “The customer is always right,” have become ubiquitous. Despite this, many companies still struggle to provide adequate customer service, and now with the advent of social media networks, they get slammed on review sites such as Yelp or on Twitter. These very powerful grapevines can do far more damage to your reputation, quickly, than what any anecdote at a cocktail party ever did previously.

Customers hold virtually all the power now. They can find a competitor that beats your price from their smart phone, while standing in your checkout line. They can solicit reviews or recommendations from people they trust through online social networks. Or, they can even initiate boycotts via the Internet. Businesses simply cannot afford to bungle away their customers’ happiness and hope to thrive – or even survive.

To the dismay of many executives, however, customer service can’t be purchased as a “turnkey” product off the shelf at Office Depot. Your IT staff can’t just inject some customer service code into your website, and the delivery man can’t drop it off at the front desk. Customer service is a company-wide commitment that starts at the top, but must have equal dedication at the bottom.

If there were a magic elixir for customer service, it would read Employee Engagement on the label. We define it as “the extent to which employees are passionate about their work, emotionally committed to their company and to their coworkers.” Employee engagement is the lifeblood of great companies. You need a baseline from which to measure your employee’s thoughts about and desires for your company, and from there, you can launch your employee engagement program. That’s why employee engagement surveys are your ally.

Every company is different, from the company culture to the culture of your offices, but one thing remains true: The happier your employees are, the happier the customers they interact with will be. If your employees are happy and satisfied with your company, that state of mind will carry over to their interactions with vendors, customers, and potential customers. Employees who aren’t engaged and content with their company tend to wear the associated emotions on their sleeves. If an employee dreads going into work every day, you can bet that this sentiment will be conveyed to customers.

Our surveys measure what your employees think about your organization’s goals and values. If they support them, that is a positive indicator of their future behavior toward your customers. Employees who share your values are more likely to remain committed to your company – and commitment is a strong indicator of good customer service.

If you’re ready to solve your customer service woes, invest in your employees – starting with an employee engagement survey. Your employees are the best ambassadors your brand will ever have. If your company has “front-line” employees, they can make or break your customer service efforts. Survey everyone in your organization, from top to bottom. To find out how NBRI can help you understand and improve your employees’ engagement, fill out our contact form or call us today at 800-756-6168. Let us put our expertise to work for you.

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