Why promote the customer service idea of increased employee ownership?
The above question is one that deserves a thoughtful answer. The fact is that ownership in something reflects a level of trust and promotes pride in your employees.
Understand this is not a recommendation for you to hand over the keys to the front door of your business to all your employees.
Ownership reflect a customer service idea that simply encourages business owners and department managers to allow employees to have more decision-making authority related to their specific area of the business. Allow employees to run their area of responsibility as if it is their own business.
In other words, expect your employees to view their job as you view it; to think and behave as if they are walking in your shoes. The employee must Understand, however, that more authority comes with greater responsibility and great accountability.
Good employees will respond to this kind of opportunity with enthusisam, and they will make an extra effort not to disappoint.
Every good customer service idea requires management to be willing to adopt the idea and ultimately sell it to the intended audience.
Encouraging employees to take ownership requires management to explain what's in it for them. So what IS in it for the employees? Is it more money, increased incentive pay? Higher perceived status in the workplace?
Perhaps, but more importantly they receive the satisfaction of being a part of something successful; something larger than oneself; contributing at a higher level and knowing that your personal involvement increases the value of the entire organization.
In a nutshell, employees who do step up and accept ownership will experience a higher degree of personal pride. This makes for happier employees, which equates higher employee retention and more satisfied customers.
Ownership is not simply a best-in-class customer service idea. Ownership is a challenge for every aspiring leader to successfully incorporate into the hearts and minds of his/her workforce.
Effective leaders will communicate clearly to employees that they should be "taking it personal" when a customer chooses to take their business to a competitor.
Everyone in the organization should be so fully engaged that the very thought of a customer choosing to leave ignites feelings of profound loss.
Smart leaders also communicate "loudly and proudly" to employees that the company is fortunate because this organization has the ultimate advantage - something extremely valuable, something no competitor can duplicate...
The leader goes on to state that his/her ultimate advantage is so highly prized that the manager wants each employee to understand how much this asset is appreciated.
Upon asking the employee if he/she knows what you are referring to, state simply - "The ultimate advantage we possess, the reason we will outpace our competitors, is because we have YOU. YOU are what give us the ultimate advantage."
The above message, communicated clearly and from the heart, will be well received by each employee. This message is key to help promote employee engagement and support an overall sense of teamwork and personal ownership.
Indeed, when employees are actively taking ownership in the business, you are leveraging the ultimate customer service idea.
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