There are plenty of ways to improve a company’s customer service, but what most companies don’t realize is that one of the simplest solutions to this is something that won’t cost them a single dime — by making every frontline staff think and act like a supervisor. And that’s just exactly what hotel employees at the Four Seasons and Ritz Carlton chains are trained to do as published by Forbes magazine.
Trusting employees to do their job well
Hotel employees in the two hotel chains are given a high degree of autonomy to do just whatever it takes to give the customer whatever they need, cutting out the brand guidelines and trusting the employees to do their job well.
Though there are still guidelines, these companies don’t create mountains of rules, instead they define the standards that they expect their employees to reach. As long as the standards are maintained, the employees freely decide on the needs of every customer service situation. Formal guidelines on every problem are no longer needed.
When every team member acts and is treated like a supervisor, they can do their jobs without their actual supervisors having to check in on them every now and then, because companies don’t do that to supervisors. This means that employees must get the proper training to understand the standards and the branding of the company, to make them put themselves in the shoes of their supervisors when dealing with various customer service problems.
Empowered employees are happy employees
If your boss trusts you enough to handle a situation with your own ideas without any script or list of rules, it gives you this sense of a more flexible job. This kind of flexibility and empowerment also creates a happy employee and a happier team. When employees are happy, they work harder because they feel appreciated in their work.
Trusting supervisors to teach their team well
Actual supervisors need to trust their team members to make the right call and not abuse this privilege. Of course the employees must learn the skills required and be able to earn the trust of their boss. If they’re consistent with their customer service quality, it will improve customer satisfaction. This means that supervisors will need to shift into the role of educator and motivator instead of a controller and dominator.
Mutual trust and support
In the end, this mutual trust and support will be as beneficial to the customer as it is to the company. When employees go out of their way (or their company guidelines while still sticking to the standards) to address every customer’s needs, the customer will feel more satisfied with the company’s services.