Customer Service From the Top Down
Every business has customers. As a result, meeting the needs of those customers should be a high priority. Indirect service may be the most effective way to serve those customers.
My wife worked at a children’s hospital. She loved working there. She loved the work she did. She loved being with the children and being able to help them. It was her ideal place to work.
But, she had to quit her job last fall.
Last year, my wife’s work made some pretty bad decisions. They were drastically changing the work days and hours for all of their nursing staff (including my wife). At the time, she worked three days a week from 3 a.m. to 3 p.m. It worked for our family because it meant we had very minimal day care (maybe 2–3 hours a week). My wife’s new hours would either be 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. or vice versa. The days she worked would also change. It would not work with our family schedule.
The hospital claimed that they were making all these changes to make it better for the children. However, there was a mass exodus of good nurses (my wife included). My wife tried to work things out for a month, but to no avail.
Her new job immediately submersed her in necessary training. She was flown to the headquarters in Florida for a week (talk about suffering!) to receive detailed, specific training there. Just recently she was flown to one of their facilities in Pennsylvania to receive additional training. She is beginning school to get her RN, and they are working with her so she can have time off to attend her classes—this requires several days off and leaving around two almost every day.
They are taking care of her, and, as a result, she feels better about giving back. She deals directly with patients after surgery, so customer service is a key part of her responsibilities.
Here are some quick lessons learned about this concept:
- Customer service flows from leadership, through employees, to customers - It is foolish for a boss to think that they can improve customer service or patient care by bypassing the employees. It is the employees who are on the front-line with the customers.
- Happy employees make customers and bosses happy - When employees are happy, they can more easily make customers happy. When customers are happy, the bosses are happy. Isn’t it great when everyone is happy?
- Happy employees save the company money - If you have unhappy employees, they will either leave or tear things up. If they tear things up, it costs money to replace what they damage—and usually things are more expensive the second time around. If they leave, there is the additional cost of finding and training someone new. To save your bottom line, make your employees happy!