Why Your Employees Are Your Most Important Investment

The key to success in business? Investing in your employees.

Your employees are the heart of your business — from their ideas and business decision-making to representing the organization in their client interactions. Your employees add value to the business, and their impact can make or break your clients’ customer experience (CX).

Companies with an employee-first approach offer the same level of engagement, care and resources to their employees that they do for customers. This strategy can increase employee engagement and improve employee experience (EX) — which will ultimately translate into excellent CX and drive revenue.

Why you need to prioritize EX for exceptional CX

A customer-centric mindset focuses on fostering long-term relationships with customers. By considering clients’ needs in everything you do, you can transform your customers into loyal brand ambassadors. But not every business is as customer-centric as they need to be. You need an intentional strategy that involves feedback, data and relationship building. Why? Because research shows customer-centric businesses are 60% more profitable than those that are product-focused.

Approaching business with an employee-first strategy is fundamental in building customer-centricity. CX is a byproduct of employees’ well-being, which is why it’s crucial to keep your employees engaged and informed. It doesn’t hurt for them to be happy, either. Research shows that happy employees are more productive and make 13% more sales than their dissatisfied counterparts.

Unhappy employees are likely to provide poor and unmotivated customer service, which is a deciding factor for 90% of Americans when choosing to do business with a company. And unsatisfactory customer service is bad for your brand. To achieve excellent customer experience and overall company success, you need to prioritize and invest in the well-being of your employees.

4 initiatives for engaged and happy employees

Superior CX starts with a better EX. There are several things you can do to engage and satisfy your employees beyond office outings and paid time off. Let’s take a look at some initiatives you can take to support your employees — for better employee and customer experience.

  • Achieve organizational alignment. Organizational alignment is only possible if every member of the organization is on the same page. So, it’s crucial for employees in every role to understand the company’s vision, strategy and offerings. Ensuring employees’ daily efforts are aligned with your business value proposition will also create awareness about how their efforts are contributing to the company’s success. This awareness provides a deeper understanding of your business’ purpose and culture, allowing them to provide better service to customers. Organizational alignment is a complex initiative, but highly aligned organizations are 72% more profitable and grow revenue nearly 60% faster.
  • Support your employees. Once your employees are aligned, give them the support and resources they need to succeed. Consider opening a company-wide communication channel for employees to communicate with management and leadership. Whether it’s to ask questions or to provide training resources, a place for two-way communication is key to employee engagement.
  • Measure feedback. Employee feedback is an effective tactic for identifying strengths and weaknesses in your organization. Employee engagement, alignment and support are not one-time initiatives — they’re ongoing priorities. Feedback can help you achieve continuous improvement and develop stronger employee relationships. To capture employee insights, you can implement an inbox for anonymous feedback, send out quarterly surveys or hold “town hall” meetings to address and measure feedback. But whatever tactic you use, the goal is to improve your company’s culture and operations through data-driven, feedback-based decisions.
  • Maintain flexibility and transparency. After a year of uncertainty, flexibility and honesty are more important than ever. For example, when devising plans to return to office, consider the fact that not everyone will feel comfortable working in person yet, while others are desperate to return. It can be challenging to achieve organizational alignment in a hybrid work environment. But you can provide digital tools that help facilitate customer engagement and unify your workforce — while also empowering your remote workers to deliver the same quality of work they deliver in an office environment. If you can’t offer a solution that satisfies everyone, you need to provide clear answers to your employees that explain the reasoning behind technology decisions. Employees who feel respected are happier and perform better, so it’s important to demonstrate that you consider and value all your employees when making decisions.

Your employees and the customer service they provide are a reflection of your business, so it’s essential they feel that their voices are heard and that they’re aligned with the organization. But it’s just as important to provide your employees with the most efficient, up-to-date tools and technology so they can perform at their highest levels. With the right digital tools and management systems, your employees can work more easily and efficiently to deliver the best possible customer service.

Employee well-being trickles down to CX

Creating a stellar employee experience takes time and commitment, but the payoff is well worth the investment. An engaged and supported workforce is more productive, innovative and dedicated to helping customers. This attitude will translate into positive CX, driving customer loyalty, revenue and long-term growth.

Stanley Huang is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at Moxtra, and a veteran and pioneer of the collaboration industry. A seasoned architect of full tech stack coverage for cloud service and software development, Huang is a named inventor on more than 10 issued and pending patents. At Moxtra, Huang manages the entire product lifecycle from business alignment to service delivery, as well as development, data center operations and more.

Employees stock image by NDAB Creativity/Shutterstock

Article posted on smallbizdaily.com