In the quest to improve the customer experience and customer loyalty, it is helpful to consider the "cultural habits" of successful service organizations, such as: Disney, Apple, Southwest Airlines, Wegmans, Nordstrom, and Amazon. Their cultural habits are not merely lip service; it's how they do business. Watch this customer experience training video for details. Here are five hints about the habits.
Cultural Habit #1:
Wegmans’ motto is: Every day, you get our best. Wegmans makes grocery shopping a true experience rather than offering the same drudgery of a chore that most consumers expect at the grocery store. Its reputation goes well beyond its market area.
Southwest Airlines began at Love Field in Dallas. They became the "love airline" with the flashy flight attendants and the most entertaining flight experience. Emeritus, Colleen Barrett, has a favorite saying about Southwest Airlines: “We are a Customer Service Company; we just happen to fly airplanes.”
Disney cast members consider what they do to be a helping profession and a noble calling.
Cultural Habit #2:
Nordstrom’s golden rule for employees is widely recognized: “Use good judgment in all situations.” Top service companies are willing to trust employees.
Amazon's approach is to hire the world’s brightest minds and to create an environment where they can invent and innovate the customer experience.
Cultural Habit #3:
Walt Disney established the Disney University after opening Disneyland to use a structured learning environment to teach the unique skills that are required of Disney cast members. It was the first corporate university and remains one of the largest training facilities in the world. Numerous classes and dozens of online courses provide a plethora of learning opportunities to employees and managers alike. Surprisingly, Disney University does not offer specific quality courses. Quality and service are built into all the training programs taught by Disney. In addition, Disney courses have been delivered to hundreds of other companies.
Tom Peters once said that in the best organizations, "Everyone has a chance to learn, improve and build up their skills."
Cultural Habit #4:
On the desk of Pete Nordstrom, the company’s President of Merchandising, sits a stack of letters from customers and employees, each telling a story about a memorable experience they had with Nordstrom. Few company executives can say the same.
Apple doesn't have strict sales quotas in place for employees. It does have metrics like "attachment rates,” the frequency with which staff members are able to provide customers with additional products like AppleCare. Those who fall short of the goals receive more sales training, which is really about helping customers with stated or perceived needs.
Cultural Habit #5:
Disney’s strong belief in “attention to detail” is what sets them apart from other organizations. Disney says it has to “sweat the small stuff.” Disney pioneered the concept of exceeding people’s expectations.
Apple's Genius Bar is the in-store tech support station. It's not a help desk or customer service center. The idea illustrates out-of-the-box thinking by recognizing employee potential and customer priority.
Call to Action
Many companies desire to deliver better service. Some try and a few improve. But, most are unwilling to make the necessary changes because they lack the commitment and more importantly, the ethics. Most say they want a superior service reputation, but they are unwilling to do the work it takes to earn it. However, any company that consistently strives to improve by aligning with these five cultural habits will make a huge difference with their employees, customers and bottom-line.
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