In the past month, I decided to take on a part time job at a Juice Bar in the city. A great opportunity to get out from behind a desk, with the hopes to make a difference in the day of a customer who entered this small establishment. I have found, way too often, that the level of customer service has declined, and there is the ongoing question “How do we fix this?”
Learning a new skill, task, and the quantity of what you put into a juice and what is the filler is a bit daunting. My pride and my ego came into this job with the attitude of I CAN DO THIS, but when put on the spot, I felt as if I had no idea on what I was doing, and this was somewhat correct. I could have failed completely and walked out, but I had a great mentor, and she took the time with me to get me where I needed to be. It wasn’t a sink or swim type of situation, it was a guided learning path and this is what is missing these days.
Great service comes from individuals who have a passion to want to serve and also nurtured by a seasoned coach to get them from Point A to Point B. If you dedicate the time and energy to train someone new, you will reap the benefits of the time invested into them. Recognition is key too. Let them know how they are doing, be upfront and honest, and set an example on how you want them to be like. If you are not being genuine, service oriented, attentive, then how you can expect your new recruits to do the same.
Of course we have all of the different Generations that can come into this. You can put somewhat of a stereotype into this, but at the end of the day we are all human. We all have the ability to connect with each other, and service is all about the connection. How do we interact with each other? Do we decide to make eye contact, smile, listen? It all comes down to a decision, and that is in the mindset of the individual. How do you nurture that person to enhance their ability to provide that service? Recognition. Try it – see what happens.
So how do we fix this? Listen to your team, what is it they need, what can you do as a Leader to help them reach their goals. Also at the same time, lead them into greatness. Show them, teach them, educate service with the small things you do. Personalize the experience, and they hopefully will do the same.
What I enjoyed the most about my part time job at the Juice Bar is the ability to connect and personalize the interaction. Not being afraid to speak up, get to know them in a 30 second window and bring their item to them with the straw, or fork, or whatever it might be. Knowing that they could choose anywhere else to go, and hopefully I have helped to create a loyal customer to the Juice Bar with the decision that I made to make it special and unique.
Get back to the basics; make someone feel special, and go with the flow. It’s that simple – but are you ready?