Extraordinary Brands – Part 2: Engaging Employees

In last week’s blog, we explored the importance of business leaders to engage the hearts of employees so they pass that enthusiasm and personal service along to the customers. In this week’ s blog we delve further into the article by Alessandro Donetti, where he talks about engaging the minds of employees and the need for continuous engagement.

Engage the Mind

Mr. Donetti points out in his article that elevating performance through meeting employees’ three intellectual needs of Achievement, Autonomy, and Mastery is often overlooked, even though it is a basic premise. CBE (of which Mr. Donetti is a managing partner) research has shown that only a small percent of frontline people have an acceptable level of the ability to focus attention on customer emotions. The percentage varies from 25% in financial services to 65% in luxury retail stores. He goes on to say that frontline people who have higher levels of focused attention ability are 85% more effective in sales results and that this ability almost triples the rates of those who promote products rather than focusing on customer emotions.

Your job as a leader is (if you are not already doing so) to learn to engage the minds of your frontline people to see their performance improve.

Continuous Engagement

This practice of engaging the hearts and minds of your employees cannot be a once in a while thing, it has to be done on a daily basis. Mr. Donetti brings up an interesting point: instead of asking senior leaders, “What do you want your store managers to do when a customer has a problem?” he asked them a very different question, “Which emotions do you want your customers to feel?”

This is a great question to ask your frontline employees. When your staff is solving problems, they need to answer the customer’s emotion concerns as well as offering rational solutions, which may only solve half the problem. Once you have created an emotional connection and allowed the customer to tell you how s/he feels, then an employee may go forward to the solution.

A tip of the glass from me to you!

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