For retail owners and small-to-medium business professionals, customers are the lifeline to your business. The internal leadership within your business directly impacts how well customers are taken care of. In this case, leadership stretches from the CEO to floor managers at an individual store. Every one of these employees in a leadership role influences how the company as a whole and its individual representatives interact with customers.
To increase customer satisfaction and bolster your customers’ overall experience, you need to refine your company’s leadership skills. The guide below will discuss how leadership impacts your customer experience (CX) and how you can improve your leadership skills and therefore better satisfy your customers.
Increase Employee Engagement
The famous Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin Group and English business mogul, said it best, “Customers do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they’ll take care of your customers.” If a satisfied and happy employee enjoys coming to work they will better interact with customers. In fact, according to Gallup, a positive workplace creates highly engaged teams, resulting in 21% greater profitability.
Think about it, a customer can easily tell based on body language or tone of voice if a retail worker is in a foul mood or is unwilling to help. Poor behavior from unengaged employees not only costs your business the customers that were interacted with but also other potential buyers due to negative word-of-mouth talks and poor online reviews.
You can better engage your retail employees by doing these simple things:
- Have clear schedules that work with your employees’ personal lives.
- Have upper management work the floor for a couple of hours per month to demonstrate to employees how to interact with customers—especially difficult ones.
- Give positive feedback to employees via morning or evening shout-outs.
- Set clear expectations early on and modify as needed.
- Address employees’ needs and concerns through employee engagement surveys.
Be the Hub to Multiple Spokes
As a leader in retail, you need to know how different departments interact and work together. Not just office politics and how they communicate with each other, but more importantly how your CX team affects marketing and sales, and vice versa.
For instance, marketing and sales strategies and campaigns are dependent on what your CX team relays back to them. If products have issues or long-time clients are unsatisfied with recent updates. These complaints need to be fixed then addressed in the marketing and sales departments.
As a retail-business leader, it’s essential to know how your teams interact and to relay important information and updates between departments.
Based on the results from your employee engagement surveys look to create new systems. These can be HR-related, such as more PTO or more flexibility with shifts, or they can be technology-based. Meaning, adding and training employees on new customer relation management (CRM) software to better track and interact with clients.
Regardless of the system, your job as a leader in a company is to make sure that employees are engaged and that your business goes beyond customer expectations, which reduces churn rate and bolsters brand loyalty.