Have you ever noticed, when you walk into a restaurant, department store, or office building, you may immediately feel comfortable or uncomfortable? It’s that intangible sense of ambience – the feeling or mood that we associate with a particular place. And though it may seem nebulous, it is so real that ambience can dictate whether we want to linger in a place, return to a place, or avoid it like the plague.
The same can be said for a company’s culture. Create the right sort of culture and your customers will return time and again, and remain loyal to your company and its products or services. But how can a company go about creating a culture that will lure and retain customers?
I’ve written recently about the specific steps a company can take toward building a needs-based approach to coaching in order to build engagement and retention among employees. Likewise, there are specific steps an organization can take toward building a culture that customers value, including:
- Building the corporate culture must start with top management;
- Executives should evaluate what customers value most about brand and employee behaviors;
- Once defined, the culture should drive the behavior of all employees;
- Front-line customer-facing associates are key to ensuring that customers experience this culture;
- Recognizing or rewarding behavior that exemplifies the corporate culture is critical;
- Consistency of standards in customer interactions is key to ensuring the customer positively experiences the corporate culture.
Every corporate culture is unique, but some are so well defined and ingrained into all customer interactions that they are the “secret sauce” for continued success. By combining needs-based coaching for your employees with a relentless focus on building a strong company culture, your customers will remain loyal to your organization through thick and thin.
Sharon Daniels is CEO of AchieveGlobal in Tampa, Florida