Employee Centric Culture - 5 tips to achieve it in 2021


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    Employee Centric Culture – Culture is King

    In 2017 we introduced our ROI series recognizing the challenges all customer experience professionals have to obtain funding for CX initiatives and to prove their positive returns. Our second ROI post covered how a well built customer experience can increase revenue and customer growth of your organization. Now, we walk you through employee engagement, organizational culture (specifically an employee centric culture) and the positive impact customer experience has on your employees.

    Great Culture is the Enabler of Great Service

    Excellent corporate culture creates engaged employees who are proud of their company and make it a personal mission to deliver great experiences. When you have real employee engagement, you see that your employees love the brand they work for so much, they will go above and beyond to “convince” customers to feel the same way. Actions like this transform employees from brand ambassadors to brand builders. When leadership takes time to build and maintain an engaged workforce, it has a significant – and profitable – impact.
    Yet, if culture is of such high value to organizations, why do so few succeed in creating this kind of customer experience advantage for their organizations?
    Because it is hard. And expensive.
    Let’s say your cultural values include FUN. How do people live that value at work? They celebrate holidays with social events, they go on interesting off-sites. They  have fun contests in the operation. Each of these cultural artifacts of the “fun value” costs money. Most leaders say they believe in that value. Very few will approve expenses for the discreet activities that maintain that value.  When companies grow, all those activities include the added expenses of travel to connect employee teams across locations.

    Culture is Not an HR Function

    You cannot achieve culture or real employee engagement with all-hands meetings twice a year. Nor can you achieve it with a daily corporate communications email. Culture is a business strategy. It is a guiding principle that informs how product and service decisions are made. If, for instance, CARING is part of your corporate culture, there are several business decisions and practices you need to invest in to express that care. This may include internal funds for supporting fellow employees during hurricanes. It can involve sponsoring travel so senior leaders can visit front line employees to better understand their day-to-day challenges. It may require a willingness to walk away from a product enhancement that will benefit the customer but also make your front life processes more complex and hard to maintain.  Caring costs money. Real money. Caring is even more expensive than FUN.
    On the other hand, caring can save an organization. If you have a product that is not the market leader in terms of quality and you marry it with an engaged workforce that delivers exceptional service, you actually have a shot at keeping your position as market leader. If you don’t, there is not much to motivate your customers return.

    How Do You Quantify the ROI of Employee Engagement and an Employee Centric Culture?

    It is fair to say that all the people who return to you after an exceptional service experience would not have done so without having received that exceptional service.
    Quantify the lifetime value of those customers. That is how you calculate your customer experience ROI. And build an employee centric culture that works hard for your brand.

    Culture is a Critical Corporate Mindset

    People are hired for culture in the true sense of that expression. If transparent leadership and instilling employee trust are values for leaders, then the pay scales of the organization should not be locked for only selected people to see. Transparency is a big word. It is repeated often. But transparency is rarely backed by actions like this.
    If transparency is on a corporation’s values list, that corporation’s leaders must be ready to be vulnerable. They must be ready to be challenged by their employees. With the right mindset, this is not a difficult value to live. Authenticity and “walking the talk” can inspire more than any other corporate action. Transparency and vulnerability is a challenging mindset for leaders. But it gets easier to practice over time. And it is worth the investment.
    Generally speaking, employees want to (prefer to) respect their leaders. We all need hope. We need someone to look up to, something to keep us moving forward. Employees are much more forgiving and patient with their leaders than we think. So, apply a brave mindset to lead wholeheartedly. Be visible. And be prepared to have an organization follow you no matter where you lead, through the culture you create and the actions that support it.

    Culture Creates Memorable Experiences

    Successful brands have strong corporate cultures that drive employees to deliver memorable experiences consistently. Still, culture is the most difficult ROI to prove.
    It is impossible to replicate, so it can be a competitive advantage. It can also be a deterrent to hostile takeovers and mergers. Having the freedom to grow organically while creating value for customers is the greatest return on investment any business can dream of. In that sense, the ROI of culture is the highest we will ever see.

    Discover How to Transform Your Corporate Culture and Drive Employee Engagement

    How a Personal Interaction builds Repeat Customers

    A customer-centric methodology is key to the successful outcome of my interaction with Hello Spud. It is the reason this story appears here, and not among the CX Big Fails! The company did not send an automated response. It did not deliver a message stating “sorry we couldn’t help you, would you like something else.” Instead, the company co-founder reached out to me personally across multiple channels (a handwritten note, followed by personal emails).

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    Get Customer Experience Basics Right and You Don’t Need to Invest in Wow Moments

    Wow Moments are a Customer Experience hot topic. Customer experience professionals ideate how to build, prioritize, finance, and measure these Wow Moments. Chip and Dan Heath wrote a whole book on the topic: The Power of Moments. No Wow Moment saves you from negative word of mouth if your brand fails to get the customer experience basics right or to deliver the expected brand experience consistently.

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