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December 2, 2012

Happy employees lead to happy customers

The reputation of a company in an industry depends heavily on the word of mouth from its clients or customers. A good feedback can bring immense business, spurge in sales, high turnovers, good professional expertise to a firm while just a wrongly worded review can spell disaster. Hence, customers are like Gods – companies strive to satisfy them. But, in this endeavour, the management of the organizations tend to overlook the people behind this success – their employees.



Realistic deadlines


In the service industry, it is obvious that the client or customer would look for completion of a project or assignment within the shortest possible time and in the minimum cost. When the senior employees of an organization attend the meetings to finalize the terms and conditions of a project, they should be aware of the existing status of workload and timelines already set for various deliverables. They should commit dates to the client for the new project after assessing these factors.


Tight deadlines are common in any industry, but there should be a limit to that too. Project managers should organize the tasks to be done in such a manner that the need does not arise to work long hours or work in weekends. However, each deliverable must be completed within the stipulated timeframe.



The effect of sustained “longer than usual” working hours


In spite of meticulous planning, there could be ups and downs in a project, such as delayed approvals, changes in team composition etc. The employees directly involved with the assignment in question may be required to put in extra hours of work to meet a particular deadline, but such occurrences may happen only once in a blue moon. However, if such incidences become regular, employees feel stressed. They develop health problems out of the fatigue – those with desk jobs develop low back pain and problems in the spinal cord, gain weight; computer users are affected by the glare of staring at the screens for long hours, have headaches, etc. Some take to smoking and consumption of alcohol in large quantities to act as a stress buster, which again have their share of side effects on an individual’s health.


The spare time in hand for the employees also reduce – so does aspects such as quality time with family and friends, recreation, time for self, etc. They have little time to exercise, eat properly, read, etc. Life becomes like a mechanical cycle between office and home. Thus, the ill effects of the health hazards posed at work gets aggravated. The ultimate result is a person who has been depleted of all the positive energy in him. There is a direct impact on his productivity in the office which in turn affects the volume, quality and accuracy of work done by the company.


Incentives


A human being requires a word or gesture of appreciation to carry on with the good work he has done or perform better. Project managers thus have to inculcate in themselves a habit to encourage their team members to apply themselves with more sincerity. The HR team of the company may introduce an “Employee of the Month” award to identify the good performers – this would inspire others to pull up their socks and improve their performance.


Good work must be incentivized – a mail of appreciation from the management; a bonus or an increment, promotion, etc go a long way to encourage the individual concerned and those around him.


Sense of belonging


It is important for an employee feel a sense of belonging with the organization. He should feel that although he may be one among many, his work and actions would contribute to the performance and reputation of the company he is employed with. A simple thing like a corporate e-mail address with the company’s domain name can create this feeling. The HR team has a critical role to play in this – they should tell employees not to waste any resource such as switching off lights, fans, computer screens, etc when not in use, taking prints on both sides of a paper for internal purposes, etc.


The management should thank all employees at the end of each financial year for the hard work put in by all of them and being a part of the success story – organize a get together, perhaps. The targets for the next year would be discussed and contributions of all employees solicited.


When one identifies with the employer, he thinks of avenues to improve his performance for the purpose of his own professional and the company’s growth.


Employee friendly policies


The company, in turn, has to convey the feeling to employees that the management puts all employees on the topmost slot of the list of priorities. The company policies should be as “employee friendly” as possible. They must encourage employees to mingle with their colleagues through team building programmes, celebration of various festivals at office, annual picnics with or without families, etc. These activities provide an ideal platform for the management to identify hidden potentials in employees – a junior level executive may have excellent management skills, a typist may have strong knowledge of current affairs, etc.


The company should encourage its employees to pursue higher studies or obtain training in relevant softwares and professional aspects, attend workshops, etc. They may sponsor an employee in such programmes. The HR team may organize medical check ups or training programmes to manage stress, presentation or communication skills for the overall personality development of employees.


The HR team should encourage employees to come with their individual problems to them without hesitation, thus conveying an assurance that the company supports its individuals in critical situations.


Happy Employees imply Happy Customers


It is important that an employee feels positive while coming to office everyday. And once his various concerns are taken care of, he feels happy and can concentrate on his work. His productivity improves – thus meeting the requirements of customers of the company. Innovative ideas are born out of creative minds. Employees are happy and satisfied, and so are the end customers.

Tags : Customer satisfaction, employee benefits, encouragement, benefits

About Anupama

A Transport Planner and Architect, Anupama has been blogging for about six years now. She has taken up professional content writing for the last two years, and can always be contacted for any assignments or queries. Her strength is original presentation of any topic.