I have written on several occasions about the need to focus on both the customer and employee when improving customer service. Because of a recent trip visiting clients I want to revisit the topic again.

In Human Sigma, the authors John Asplund and Jim Fleming discuss rational customer satisfaction versus emotional customer satisfaction to that gives a practical example of the difference).  It is far better to have an emotionally satisfied customer than one who is simply rationally satisfied with the service.  In fact, there is evidence to suggest that a customer who is only rationally satisfied is about as loyal as a dissatisfied customer.  However, to cause customers to be emotionally satisfied you truly need engaged employees.  How do you  do it?  They present several very practical suggestions outlined below:

Manage Outcomes, Not Behaviors – Success is achieving the right outcomes and not whether the steps of the job were executed the right way.

Liberate Don’t Legislate – Allow employees creativity, spontaneity, and the ability to choose the initiatives they work on.

Engagement is for Everyone – Almost all employees can be engaged productive workers if they find a role that fits who they are.

All Politics Are Local– Employee engagement must be managed at the store level.  At the local level, managers can influence and encourage the basic needs of engagement.

If you do yet have a copy of Human Sigma, it is well worth the investment.  It is packed with all kinds of interesting and useful research.  The authors have practical ideas that you can put to work in your business.  Most important, it is written in  entertaining manner.  I refer to it often. Let me know what you think.

Lynn

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