Bad Employee Experience; Not being able to do your job and help the customer

I’m not impressed with job titles. Never have been. Never will be. I believe they set up unnecessary barriers and disengage rather than engage employees. I am however impressed with what people do….what they really do. Seriously, look at financial institutions; who’s not a Vice President? One of the reasons I created the Engagement Recess Activity in the RECESSitation Pack was to break through the job title and organization chart barrier and get to the heart of what people do; so that the people in the next cube, office, or department clearly know what you do, how you can help them, and perhaps how you can help a customer. Even better it is designed to get customers engaged with employees. Take my recent experience with TDBank, America’s Most INCONVENIENT bank as I am calling it these days. I recently started the process of moving my banking there. Now I totally …

Save the Employee Experience: Don’t allow “I remember when……”

Talk to anyone who was on the ground level of a start-up company that has now grown into something big and they’ll have their “I remember when” stories. I remember when everyone knew everyone I remember when decisions didn’t require 18 signatures I remember when we did things as a company I remember when EVERYONE was rewarded when the company met objectives I remember when autonomy and risk really meant something. Then the company grew. The once great place to work is now stagnant; people don’t look forward to arriving at 6:00AM any longer and are heading out the doors at 5:00PM sharp. It’s why people leave and move on to the next start-up; the next great idea. It’s why people are leaving places like Google to go work for Facebook. It’s why people will leave your company. Unless……………. You take a look around your organization when it is young and …

What CAN you do to create a better employee experience?

You can’t afford raises. You can’t afford training. You can’t afford a small recognition event. You can’t afford to hire more people. You can’t. You can’t. You can’t. But the economy is supposedly getting better. Just yesterday USA Today reported that restaurant business is up. Tourism is showing signs of a rebound; small but a rebound. Is it that you really can’t afford these things? Or is it that you’re afraid? Afraid that the news is wrong? Afraid that the double dip is coming? Afraid of what your boss might say when you walk into his or her office with employee morale on your mind? Afraid. Afraid. Afraid. Organizations that take risks keep people engaged. Organizations that have stopped listening to the doom-and-gloom news seem to be doing quite well. Organizations that continue to invest in their people are seeing higher engagement and the return of customers. And the rest???? Look at all …

Train your employees to have a great employee experience

We’re short staffed We had someone call in sick today Our technician is already doing his best We can’t schedule you first tomorrow; an emergency or something might come up We can’t guarantee you anything Oh, you can’t stay at home and wait a couple more hours? DISENGAGE!! That’s what I did. This was clearly not what I wanted to hear this employee whine to me about in the 8 minutes we were on the telephone. Not once during our conversation did Lisa at Arrow Gas try to come up with a solution that was good for me. Not once did she even acknowledge that I just wasted four hours waiting for a service call (you know the ones; where they tell you that you’ll need to be home between 12 and 4PM) that wasn’t about to happen.  Okay, maybe it wasn’t a total waste. I watched the episode of South Park I missed the night …

Make Social Networking a mandatory part of the employee experience

So what’s going on in the world of social media and how employers are embracing or restricting it? Depends on who you are talking to and which expert you are following. Did you ever notice that for every study one can find enough evidence of the complete opposite? And what’s even sadder is that organization policies are then developed not on what might make sense but what some study, survey or expert of the day is saying. Case in point is social media. Should we let employees tweet? Should we let them have access to Facebook or 4Square during the day? What if they say something inappropriate about us? First of all if you’re worried that they’re saying inappropriate things you’ve got bigger issues about the employee experience you’re providing and probably need to work on that before worrying about who is on Facebook. Secondly, they all have smartphones; so your company restriction doesn’t matter. Why not …

Woke up on the wrong side of the bed and guess what I found…..

My natural instinct when rolling out of a hotel bed is to get out on the right side (that would be right side when looking at the bed.) It’s the side I get out on when at home. The right side of the bed at the Renaissance Patriot Place was near the wall; but still plenty of room to move about. When I rolled out of bed yesterday morning I stepped on something hard and pointy. And it went crunch. I bent over to see a few pieces of a brownish substance on the floor. Oh……must be potpourri. Why they put it on the floor where people walk made no sense but who knows what hotels are thinking today when it comes to providing a different type of customer experience. I picked it up. YUCK!!! It was hardened fried chicken pieces!!!! Now the night before I was hemming and hawing at …

What’s on your outside?

What do you see? I pedal my bike by it all the time. Thought it was an old abandoned building. Then I heard it was a bakery. That only opens on Sunday. A bakery? Looks like a dump. Looks like the Board of Health should be there boarding it up. More and more people started talking about this place. I was driving by Sunday afternoon. The open sign was on. Inside was a sign….Eddie’s Bakery. I made a purchase. Let’s see what the rage is all about. OMG, the best Rye Bread I ever had. And a testament to good food can be cheap. Whether it’s a building or a person, the outside never tells the story. Get to know it/them. P.S. Look hard at the wood. I guess it was there all along.

Teach employees to have a sense of humor; not to say “I’m sorry”

We’ve all heard it…………. The Customer Service Representative who says “I’m sorry” for your trouble Mr. DiGirolamo (insert your name where mine is). No they’re not; we all know it. They’re told to say that. They’re not REALLY sorry. Wouldn’t it be great if they said things like: You’re right Mr. DiGirolamo, the clown who opened your account had no clue what he was doing. It’s in the terms and conditions that you checked off/accepted and didn’t read. No one reads them. It’s silly and pointless to even have them. I agree, the policy is moronic and the people who run this place are so out of touch with the customer. But if I do that we make less profit   Like yesterday, I walked into my bank to close an account. I was asked why. My response was “there will be a $35 fee for me to give you that …

Always Right Manager = Bad Employee Experience

Witnessed Very Recently: He needs to hear himself talk He always has to one-up his employees He needs to feel that he is the authority If you work for him you cannot teach him anything He thinks information is power He assumes you don’t know rather than ask if you do Coincidentally the rest of the staff want nothing to do with him, talk about him, do what they can to avoid him and sadly he sits alone and ignored when his team is in a social setting Message to leaders and managers: You’re not always right. And even if you are, (which you’re not), you’re disengaging people with the above behavior.

The irony of employee satisfaction surveys and employee disengagement

Her job was to coordinate the employee satisfaction survey with the outside 3rd party. Yes it says “was.” Read on. It doesn’t have a happy ending. So what is the purpose of the employee satisfaction survey? To hear what is on the minds of employees and make for a better & more engaged organization? An exercise in futility to appear as if you care about what is on the minds of your workforce? To disengage employees? So when the results came back all information was compiled by department and not by entire company. Verbatim words came through on the results; making it clear who said what. If you were a department leader or manager you knew whose words you were reading. She brought this to the attention of her boss when she clearly recognized her own feedback – which by the way was nothing but positive. But still, she pointed out a …