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Finding New Ways to Improve the Customer Experience

Kevin Gardner
The long-term success of a business hinges on its ability to ensure a positive customer experience. A disinterested sales staff, employees who lack either the motivation or training needed to better meet the needs of their customers and associates whose priorities lie elsewhere are all potential liabilities that no business may be able to afford.
Crafting and implementing strategies that can help to boost customer satisfaction may offer a far greater return of investment than businesses might imagine.

Creating the Right Atmosphere

Unhappy workers lead to unsatisfied customers. Building and maintaining a positive atmosphere and finding ways to boost morale may benefit every aspect of a business's operations.
Sales associates and customer service reps who possess a positive attitude, the right mindset and a genuine enthusiasm for what they do can be a terrific asset for ensuring that customers and clients are able to receive the best treatment possible.

Encouraging Competition

A little inter-office rivalry is a great way to inspire employees to go the extra mile. Tracking sales figures or other performance benchmarks can provide business owners and their staff with greater insight regarding which sales tactics are effective and which customer-management tools and techniques are having the most impact.
A monthly contest or a quarterly competition to see which employees can make the most sales and which associates are able to show the most improvement is a proven and effective way to help keep a sales staff motivated and focused.
Even a modest prize, small bonus or a little recognition for their accomplishments may have a profound impact on employee performance.

Feedback and Employee Participation

Employees and associates who have direct contact with customers may possess unique insight on how to improve their overall experience. Soliciting their staff for feedback, polling them for ideas on how to attract more customers or inviting them to take a more active role when designing a new policy or process can often be very advantageous.
There are limits to what even the most dynamic business owners or team leader may be able to accomplish on their own. Those that are wise enough to turn to their staff for help may be better equipped to find the solutions they need.

Empowering Your Sales Team

Demanding results while simultaneously denying employees the tools and resources they need to produce them can be devastating for morale.
An empowered sales team or a customer service department that has been given the agency and assets they need to better meet the needs of their customers will be able to overcome a greater range of obstacles.
Businesses that hamstring their staff or who bottleneck their efforts by depriving them of the ability to assess the situation and to take appropriate action without having to involve a supervisor may be hard pressed to improve customer satisfaction levels.

Assess the Results

Even the best plans and ideas may still fail to hit the mark. Taking stock of their existing customer relations strategy or workflow process from time to time can allow businesses to more easily identify any issues or potential opportunities for improvement.
Just because a business's current strategy may be working does not always guarantee that it will perform well over the long-term. Over time, the customer's needs, habits and behaviors may begin to change and evolve and a business may need to fine-tune various policies and processes if they hope to keep up.
An unsatisfactory customer experience may have potential repercussions that extend well beyond a single interaction. The loss of repeat business opportunities, poor reviews or a tarnished reputation due to poor customer service could prove to be very costly.
Striving to keep their staff motivated or finding new ways to inspire their employees to go above and beyond when dealing with a customer can do wonders to boost customer satisfaction levels and to help ensure that every customer is able to enjoy a more pleasant and positive experience.