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Four key challenges for management today

We've analysed hundreds of thousands of questionnaires, completed by staff and customers across a broad range of industries, from finance to waste management. And, time and time again, it's the same four questions are flagged as areas of concern:

  1. Does your business really understand your customers?
  2. Does your business offer your customers a consistent experience?
  3. Is your business easy to do business with?
  4. Do your employees get the recognition they deserve for the work they do?
So let's take a look at them in a little more detail.

  1. Understanding customers
To deliver exceptional service, you need to know your customers inside out. But, from our results, a more common customer view is that you may think you understand them, but in reality you don't quite hit the mark.
Businesses need to anticipate customer needs, and communicate with them in a timely fashion - but that's not possible if you don't know who they are.

2. Consistent customer experience

From the very first contact with your company, a customer begins to form the perception of your customer experience. But while you may do an excellent job at creating a positive first impression, there needs to be a focus on what happens next.
It'll come as no surprise that our research tells us that the post-sale service is key in ensuring your customer knows they are valued and understood. Failing to deliver that will result in ill-feeling, like you wanted to "take their money and run".

3. Being easy to work with

The ever-increasing competition to win and retain customers is driving many long-established companies out of business, thanks largely to the current economic situation. So delivering the highest standards of customer service and making life easy for your customers is critical.
Making customers jump hurdles to get what they want is no longer a viable option, not that it ever should have been. Customer loyalty is at an all-time low, and they'll think nothing of switching to a competitor or voicing their disapproval online. Being easy to communicate with is key.

4. Employee recognition

Research shows that satisfied employees make satisfied customers. So it's shocking how few employees we've surveyed over the years feel that they get the recognition they deserve.
"There is a feeling among the workers that the company doesn't value us," says one employee surveyed.

If you don't think your employees would answer that question positively either, your staff engagement must be addressed as a priority. Not only for them, but for your customers and for the livelihood of your business.