The Customer Comes First? No, the Employee Does

Posted by Brandon Carter on Aug. 2, 2016

“Have it Your Way!”

“The Customer is Always Right!”

“Do everything with the customer in mind!”

These are long-accepted mantras that a lot of companies have built cultures around. And it’s worked well for some of them.

But it’s not bulletproof. “Have it Your Way” breaks down quickly when the kid working the burger station doesn’t feel like making a burger with extra onions, two pickles, cheese shaped like a heart and mayo BELOW the patty, not on top.

All the corporate slogans and motivational posters go out the window every time an employee doesn’t care to do what the customer says. The whole concept is for naught.

A disinterested or rude employee is the fastest way to kill a customer’s vibe.

That’s why the customer doesn’t come first. The employee does.

If you hire and invest in employees who are passionate and dedicated in what they do, or at least willing to put forth a great effort in it, good customer experiences will always follow. The customers will enjoy a great experience, and they’ll come back.

It isn't just a fun platitude. There are fiscal returns on employee engagement.

Organizations that have over 50% employee engagement rates retain over 80% of their customers, according to a recent study from Demand Metric.

A Cvent survey found that customer retention increases by 18% on average when employees are highly engaged.

According to an LRN report: Organizations in which employees are primarily motivated by shared values and a commitment to a mission and purpose are nine times more likely to have high customer satisfaction.

You can find more stats like these over on our employee engagement and loyalty data collections.New Call-to-action

Engaged employees lead to engaged customers.

It applies to every facet of an organization, even employees who aren’t customer-facing.

Great engagement reveals itself in your products. It shows up in meetings, in water cooler conversations, and in creative ideas and contributions about new ways to meet customer needs.

All of those influence the bottom line.

Take a company with a solid service or product, set service-centric values from the top down, and fill it with employees that believe in it, and watch the money roll in.

A company is only as good as the people that comprise it.

The customer will have it their way, but only because the employees want that for the customer.

Topics: Employee Engagement + Loyalty

Brandon Carter

Written by Brandon Carter

Brandon is a former writer and marketer for Access Development. He's a frequent blogger on customer and employee engagement & loyalty, consumer trends, and branding. Connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter at @bscarter