Firstly, from all the FIT team, we wish you a very happy and prosperous new year. As we look ahead into 2015 and begin to draw up our plans for the year we thought it appropriate to refresh our minds on what we can do to ensure our teams remain successful over the next 12 months.
We all want our staff to deliver remarkable customer service each and every time – and this is a journey, not a destination. We therefore need to make an investment in our staff if they are to represent our brand in the most effective way. However, not all companies have the budget to send their staff on expensive training programmes that might not address their specific needs, so a proactive approach to tackling your people development needs is required. Fortunately, there are plenty of ‘in the moment’ solutions – cost-effective quick fixes – once you learn to spot them.
This means looking out for what you can do today to improve your customer experience, rather than waiting for the annual appraisals to come around or, worse still, assuming problems will sort themselves out or dissipate over time. Regular one-to-ones, team briefings, telephone training, leadership development, buddying and co-coaching activities all help to maintain a learning culture and ensure ‘in the moment’ training issues and people development needs are identified and quickly acted upon.
If we accept that our staff are the ambassadors of our business – responsible for ensuring a positive customer service experience – surely they are our most valuable asset and we should therefore find ways and means to invest in them accordingly? Strangely, there’s still a lingering perception among many frontline operations that telesales training is a one-off commodity purchase, not a long-term investment. This is completely the wrong angle to view people development from. You will always struggle with price if you view the investment solely from a ‘purchasing’ perspective and thus never experience the long-term benefits of bespoke programmes to improve your customer experience.