Internal Comms and Customer Service
We all know that great internal communications and employee engagement improves employee satisfaction, engagement and retention. What some companies are still missing, is that this in turn improves customer service – which obviously has an effect on company success and profits.
I’ve worked in the hospitality industry for over three years and what I’ve noticed is that great internal communications that really engages employees needs to be present before amazing customer service can be fully realised.
I read a great quote once:
“No one washes a rental car”
Why look after something you don’t care about or have any long-term investment in.
This is true of delivering great customer service. If you don’t care about the company you work for or see a future in the company, why would you care about the company’s customers?
So why is customer service so important anyway?
- Customers will cancel memberships if there is a big difference between what they are offered and promised and the level of service they receive
- Customers are more likely to complain on social media channels about bad service than celebrate good service
- Customers are less likely to renew memberships, contracts etc if they feel they are not valued, respected or receiving the level of service they expected
The three top things your “front of house” staff should be championing:
- A passion for great customer service
- The company vision, values and brand promise
- Core customer service skills including positivity, responsiveness, listening and problem solving
Bring your values to life
Your employees need to live, breath and truly bring the company values to life. They need to speak the same language, care about the same initiatives and have a passion for the end goal. This doesn’t mean you need to create drones who all speak and act in the same way – it means you need to create understanding and buy-in from your employees.
If your employees don’t receive updates about the company or communication from the senior management, then motivation will decrease and customer service will see a knock on effect.
Develop specific communication channels as appropriate
If you have a specific customer service team at the “front of house” sit down and understand THEIR needs. Great internal communications isn’t about simply pushing information from the top down. Think about what would be great for each of your customer service representatives. For example:
- Crib sheets with details of each of your senior management
- Face to face training programmes, workshops etc on communication skills
- Face to face meetings and workshops with the senior leadership team
- Frequently asked questions
- Message house
- Crisis communications and management flow chart
- Employee recognition scheme
- Message boards
- Internal social media channels that provide up-to-date information
Research shows and proves that those employees who receive engaging internal communication content, understand the company brand promise, vision and values and who feel supported in their roles are up to twice as likely to deliver better customer service… and that’s a great thing for your company.