Want loyal customers? Focus on employees (feat. Shep Hyken)
Often the best companies to do business with are also likely the best companies to work for.
There is a direct connection between employee experience (EX) and customer experience (CX) and the most successful senior leaders know this. Studies show that happy employees make loyal customers, such that engaged employees increase revenue and outperform their peers by 147% in earnings per share (Gallup).
We discuss the link between EX and CX with Shep Hyken, customer service and experience expert, bestselling author and the Chief Amazement Officer of Shepard Presentations, who has helped hundreds of major companies create an inspiring and engaging team culture.
“If you don’t give the people you work with the tools they need to get their job done most effectively, how can they properly engage with your customers?” Shep explains.
Company culture is a driving force behind why 46% of job seekers choose to apply to a position (JobVite, 2018). Creating an environment that attracts and maintains top performers in your industry is crucial—and easier said than done.
So, what do CEOs and entrepreneurs need to do to improve their company culture?
Shep teaches his clients six simple strategies to improve team culture, and it all starts with mindset. Here is some insight into the first one:
According to Shep, companies that outperform their competitors and have a strong team culture don’t lead by “rules.” Their mission for customer experience is so ingrained in their employees that it’s not something they have to constantly reinforce. It’s simply understood.
One way to foster this collective attitude is by creating a company mantra that captures the vision of your customer experience.
Unlike a mission statement, a mantra is one sentence or less and easy to digest and instill company-wide. Once you have your mantra clear, everyone under your employ should adopt it immediately, even if they’re not working directly with customers.
For example, the mantra at luxury hotel chain Ritz-Carlton is “We’re ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen,” and employees at Shepard Presentations know “Always be amazing” by heart.
Make your mantra visible by including it in corporate documents, on business cards and email signatures. End all meetings with your mantra, and repeat it often throughout the day. This kind of repetition creates a culture where employees feel a part of something bigger and are motivated by a greater call to service.
And, of course, you have to walk the talk. Become a living example for the mantra you’re instilling in your employees. For example, if your mantra is “Enriching women’s lives” like cosmetics company Mary Kay, then your presence, actions and behaviors need to embody that message.
“Whether you’re an entrepreneur of a small business, a startup business or you’re running a huge business, you have to recognize that it’s cultural and it starts with you at the top,” Shep says.
In our interview, Shep gives us his six simple strategies to improve team culture and, ultimately, the create loyal customers.
Creating a company mantra is one. Watch the full video to get the other five.
Curious to learn how to improve your company culture and employee experience? Then check out our interview with Shep Hyken on The Enlightened Executive, and learn more from his blog, books or courses.
Order Shep’s latest book “I’ll Be Back” online to not only get it shipped to you as soon as it’s released in September 2021, but also receive the eBook immediately so that you can start getting your customers to come back again and again—starting NOW!