The following is content taken from John’s newest book The Relationship Economy, Building Stronger Customer Connections In The Digital Age available next week—October 8, 2019.
Digital Intelligence Up, Emotional Intelligence Down
As a result of the digital revolution, many members of the younger generations lack the necessary people skills of previous generations. Yet they are now leading start-ups that have developed quickly into leading companies. This will only accelerate the growing number of relationship-disadvantaged businesses.
In a TED Talk, hospitality entrepreneur Chip Conley addressed this phenomenon: “I believe looking at the modern workplace, the trade agreement of our times is opening up these intergenerational pipelines of wisdom so that we can all learn from each other. Almost 40 percent of us in the US workforce have a boss that is younger than us and that number is growing quickly. Power is cascading to the young like never before because of our increasing reliance on digital intelligence. We are seeing young founders of companies in their early 20s scaling them up to global giants by the time they get to 30. And yet we expect these young digital leaders to somehow miraculously embody the relationship wisdoms we older workers have had decades to learn. It’s hard to microwave your emotional intelligence.”
“Investing in technology without investment in your people is a waste of time.”
7 Traits for Effective Interactions
So where to begin? You can start by looking for employees predisposed toward a high level of customer service. Consider, for example, these seven key traits that lead to effective interactions. Each of these should be incorporated into the soft training of your new and existing employees.
- Compassion and Empathy
Compassion is the ability to feel for another living being, which results in a desire to help. Having strong empathy for a customer’s situation means seeing and understanding it from their perspective—walking in their shoes.
- Engagement and Warmth
An employee with these traits is obviously happy in what they do and welcoming to the person they are doing it for. They seek eye contact, smile, and immediately put customers at ease by being friendly, cheerful, and caring.
- A Drive to Serve
The employee is purposeful about focusing on the experience of the person they are serving above anything else.
Ownership implies acting with the same care and thoughtfulness as an owner of the company and doing whatever it takes to ensure that customers leave happy with their experience.
- Charitable Assumption
It’s important to act as if no customer has bad intentions. After all, you do not want to punish 98 percent of your customers for what you are afraid the remaining 2 percent might do.
Effective employees cannot work on autopilot. Instead they are always fully in the moment, focused 100 percent on the person they are interacting with.
- The Desire to Exceed Expectations
Those with a drive to go above and beyond are constantly looking for ways to surprise and delight customers.
Passenger Air Rage On The Rise Everywhere Except Southwest Airlines
A report by the Government Accountability Office says US airport passengers are attacking airport agents with higher frequency, subjecting them to verbal threats or acts of physical violence. Yes, airline travel is often one of the most frustrating, high anxiety experiences a person can go through. And it has only gotten worse, which has led to an increase in passenger air rage. However, while the study is extensive and gives examples from virtually every airline experiencing these attacks, what I can’t seem to find in this report and nearly anywhere else, are multiple examples of this happening towards Southwest Airline agents & their employees. The same Southwest Airlines who is constantly rated #1 in customer and employee satisfaction. Coincidence? Not at all. When you treat your employees really well, and train them to be extremely friendly, display genuine empathy and compassion, the majority of customers will not react emotionally and become irrational.
Order John’s Newest Book!
It is finally here—October 8th, 2019, John DiJulius’ newest book, his best work, The Relationship Economy, Building Stronger Customer Connections In The Digital Age. This book could not be timelier in the world we are living in.