Culture is the ‘personality’ that defines the atmosphere in which employees work, and produce. There are many areas to consider when determining culture, including mission, goals, ethics, value, and of course, expectations ( of both employees, and customers ).
What is always prevalent in every organization with regards to culture, is the provocative question – “Customers first, or Employees first…..”?
When looking at the service industry, it comes down to one simple sentence; Your customers will only be happy if the people providing them their service are happy. And here is where culture is paramount, because while great employee engagement will not ensure great customer engagement, poor employee engagement most certainly guarantees poor customer engagement. Each customer is crucial to the success of a business, without them, there isnt a need for employees. Both have to be in balance to one another. All employees in any organization must be committed to customer satisfaction, and take ownership to it, or at least a piece of the overall experience.
When an employee is considered as a kind of ‘internal customer’ by management, the answer becomes very clear – they both matter equally. They are part of an inseparable, interdependent loop of reinforcement. If an organization’s culture puts the customer at the heart of business, this will drive employee behaviour. Leadership strategy and clear vision, along with employee engagement, will give you the best opportunity for a winning customer experience. There is a need to create connections, along with visibility, across the board so that everyone sees how the work of one will impact the other, and how they ultimately impact the customers take – away.