Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.
Issue link: http://lctmag.epubxp.com/i/765069
LIMOUSINE, CHARTER & TOUR JANUARY 2017 41 it's one rant too many. To help this tran- sition, owners need to set an example for all. "As owners, every job is our job, includ- ing cleaning the toilet," Busse says. "Imagine the negative impact your rant employees are having on others, whether they are saying 'It's not my job,' acting annoyed, or interrupt- ing. Imagine if you're an employee that's just been yelled at or spoken short to, and now you have to get on the phone or be- hind the wheel and deal with actual customers. Is there a good chance some of that negativity from rant is going to rub off on you, then ultimately on a customer?" The fish stinks from the head down; if you're the owner, you're the fish. If you have rant-like employees working at your organization, you're part of the problem. If you as an owner don't do the right thing, can you really fault your employees? Think Like Owners, Not Like Renters Rave employees think and act like owners of the busi- ness, while rant employees think and act like renters who are only there until some- thing better comes along. To change the rant mindset, you have to realize your staff and customers share similar traits. Both want you to care about them and their needs. They want help accomplishing their goals. "Yes, your employees have goals, and if you don't know what they are, this might be a good time to find out," Busse says. Clients and employees want to be treated well, val- ued, and to have good rea- sons to work with you. Busse mentions the consequences of not following through on this. Glassdoor, a website where former employees can anonymously review the companies they've worked for, is where they might take out their frustrations. Just like customers talk when they have a good ex- perience, so do employees. If your employees believe they are having a good ex- perience with your company, the reviews are nothing to worry about. "If they feel like they've been slapped around or yelled at, what kind of reviews are they going to be writing? The way you treat them will affect how they feel about you and your company and how engaged they'll be," Busse says. Your employees are watching and listening to you, too. "If you're the kind of boss who says things like 'you idiot, I told you not to do that,' what is going to be the engagement level of that employee? It can't be 'you do this, but I'm going to do that.' Our employees are kind of like our children; they are watching everything we do. We think they aren't really listening, but they are." Are you being a role model for your employees in terms of how you want them to act? "If you get off the phone with a customer who pushes your buttons and you go 'that guy is an idiot,' and your employee heard you say that, what's going to happen the next time that employee talks to that customer? You can't expect someone to act differently if you're not doing it yourself," Busse says. Power To The People Your employees are on the front lines and are speaking to your clients daily. If you don't tap into the intelligence your employees have as to what's working and what isn't, you're missing a big opportunity. "Give the power to the people. Empower your em- ployees, listen to their feed- back, and don't microman- age. If you don't trust your employees, is it possible you don't have the right people working for you?" Busse asks. "We are so quick to hire peo- ple. And yet, on the backside when it's time to fire, we are slow. Why is that? It's a lot of work to find good people, but here's the thing: If you hire someone, that person is rep- resenting your business." Your employees have skills, but the other most important piece is their attitudes. There- fore, when you're interview- ing a prospective employee, don't just look at the resume. If the attitude isn't aligned with your company's vision, trouble will abound. Ask open-ended questions such as, "What would you do if a customer said this to you?" and "How would you handle a situation like this?" Busse says she'd rather take someone who has no indus- try experience and mold them if they have the right attitude. "That's where it starts. By the time you realize one of your employees is a rant, your clients knew it weeks and months before." For your staff to succeed, you have to provide them with the necessary tools. Give them confidence, train them properly, allow them to make mistakes, and then explain how to do it differently. "Our employees need to feel if they do make a mis- take, it won't be the end of the world. But here's the thing: Some of our employ- ees have made mistakes in the past and we didn't re- act properly. If we have a one way discussion with them, that's going to make them internally say 'I'm never going to make an- other decision again.' We create that situation." Finally, know a satisfied customer is a former customer waiting to happen. "Satisfied isn't enough. If I'm satisfied, I'm not loyal; satisfaction is temporary. It starts with how you're hiring and acting." — Lexi@LCTmag.com You can read more about improving the customer service your team is providing in Randi Busse and Carol Heady's book, "Turning Rants into Raves: Turn Your Customers On Before They Turn On YOU!" They want you to… • Care about their needs • Help them accomplish their goals • Treat them well • Give them good reasons to work with you • Value them WHAT DO EMPLOYEES AND CUSTOMERS HAVE IN COMMON? Designed by Bedneyimages - Freepik.com