A strong leader is able to shift with the changing tides and successfully navigate his/her teams through hurdles and pitfalls. David Highbloom, a 25-year entrepreneur with extensive leadership experience in business models that accentuate the customer service experience, says that the recent shift to a digitally focused business model presents new challenges in how leadership captures and enhances the customer service experience. Highbloom continues by pointing out several insights that can offer engaging new opportunities to impact your employees and customers positively.
The first is to focus on a “one-company” experience. Fractured processes that are reactive in nature will most likely lead to a disjointed and disorganized effort to address customer concerns. Highbloom says it is important to unite and focus on changes that will benefit the entire organization rather than address each challenge in a vacuum.
Secondly is to be flat out, brutally honest with your team. Highbloom says now is not the time to hold back information or strategy from your employees (actually, there never is a good time). Leaders and their teams face the same challenges and live with the uncertainty of what tomorrow brings. Good leadership fills that black hole of uncertainty and provides confidence, unity, and a sense of responsibility to each other. Communicate honestly and effectively, and your team will respond, which will spill over into how they communicate with customers.
Lastly, it is essential to maintain a high level of humanity and empathy in employee and customer interactions. We are all human so make it real. Highbloom reminds us that it is the little things that may count the most. Honest and straightforward platitudes can go a long way. Saying Hello, Goodbye, and Thank You are vital bookends in conversations with employees and customers. Basic kindness cannot be forgotten. It is important to remind employees that although many customer interactions will seem routine, it is very personal to the customer.
Highbloom says that finding ways to think outside the box when communicating with employees and customers will pay big dividends to be influential leaders through times of change.