Beyond “Blame Storming” – There is more to service excellence than penalising your frontline employees
Service excellence is a matter of organisational culture and larger vision and goals. It is rarely as subjective as the last person who came in contact with your customers.In our experience, most organisations penalise employees for poor service experience. They believe that the only way to satisfy customers is in the hands of frontline employees. However given that it’s the very same employees who have to deal with the brunt of an angry customer, the chances of them deliberately ignoring the right thing to do is very, very slim. More often than not, they do the very best they can amidst the existing structures and processes dealt out to them.
Continuing on our myth buster series, today we speak more about the unconventional implementations of a Mystery Shopping program. Most literature we find on Mystery Shopping concludes its positive impact on customer service, specifically in the offline retail industry. However, the program gives you eyes and ears to find out much more about the real time operations of your business.
Despite Customer Experience Measurement processes, Net Promoter Scores, and Customer Satisfaction Surveys, there are several customer service and experience needs that remain unsaid. Marketers and service professionals alike are often baffled when research reports look great but don’t translate to sales. Could it be that we are failing to uncover the unsaid expectations?
If this United Airlines debacle or the way Justine Stacco's life blew up because of an unfunny tweet are anything to go by, the biggest lesson brands need to learn today is how to behave like everyone is watching.
A common myth surrounding Mystery Shopping is that it is only useful for some industries like Retail, F&B, Banking, etc. and can be used only to keep an eye on Customer Service standards. But the real impact of Mystery Shopping can be much more diverse and far-reaching.
Brands, especially customer-facing ones in the industries of Retail, F&B, Automotive, Banking and Services, have training and development programs designed to deliver on their Customer Experience promise. Depending on the industry and audience demographics, we have known these training programs to answer specific customer scenarios and use cases. It is an excellent starting point for front line staff to consistently deliver satisfactory Customer Experiences. The question that remains - how can brands track whether these brand-specific protocols are really being followed in their outlets and customer touch points or not? This is where Mystery shopping comes into play.