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MAGIC® Insights
Inspiring Exceptional Service Cultures
Apr2018:Vol18Iss2
stands for Make A Great Impression on the Customer.
Helping You Create a Great Customer Experience

In This Issue
Feature Article:
Leadership Trends are Looking More Human
 
Thoughts from Tom
 
Is Your Smartphone Making you Dumb?
 
Five Ways to Cultivate Mindfulness at Work
 
Another Fun Reinforcement Puzzle
 

About Us
Communico helps organizations build and sustain exceptional service cultures. With our MAGIC® system of training and consulting services, we collaborate with you to measurably improve your customer and employee experiences.
 

To download a free chapter of our book, How to Talk to Customers, and learn more, click here.
MAGIC is a registered trademark of Communico Ltd.

 

Leadership Trends are Looking More Human


by Jean Marie Johnson, Senior Consultant for Communico Ltd.

While reviewing Forbes 14 “leadership trends” that will shape organizations in 2018, I was struck by the number of human elements that made the list. Where was the emphasis on advancing technology and digital strategies? In a word: nowhere. Sure, social media got its call out, but even there, it was about encouraging all employees to be brand ambassadors. That’s a human thing, no? And so too is becoming a “truly customer -centric business” when it means focusing on the experiences customers have when they “experience” your brand.

There’s a definite heartbeat that connects the 2018 leadership trends that’s hard to miss:  investing in human capital, focusing on individual growth, promoting continuous education, and embracing work-life blend.

It makes sense. With so much attention devoted to tapping the potential of technology to make the customer experience easier and more efficient, organizations risk losing the personal, human touch. Doing so puts both the employee experience and the customer experience in peril.  And that’s why the pendulum is shifting to achieve balance.

In my work, I am seeing clients balance their investment in technology with an investment in developing their service culture. Many of the trends identified by Forbes are the very seeds they are nurturing:

  • Encouraging people by engaging them and getting every voice into the service culture conversation. It’s a dialogue that everyone owns. After all, how else can you be an ambassador?
  • Investing in human capital by increasing connectivity. The emotional and familiar touch points that bring employees together is productive; Whether it’s a bowling league, a service project, or your classic company picnic, emotional touchpoints matter. They increase “likes” because people “like” and feel a part of the organization they work for.
There is one area of focus that is more “timeless” than “trend,” leading empathically and leading by example. “What you are speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you say.” This ageless quote from essayist and philosopher, Ralph Emerson, can support those leaders who understand the nuances of communication. Doug Donnelly, managing director for Madison Park Advisors, commented recently in an interview, “Great leaders listen intently attempting to truly understand the other person’s perspective, have the ability to relate to the other person, and not only coach but educate. People trust these leaders’ advice because they understand it comes from a good place and that their leader is sincerely trying to help them. Finally, great leaders “nudge” those around them to look at things differently, put themselves in others’ shoes (see different perspectives), and create a safe place for self-reflection and self-evaluation.”

And that leads us to clients emphasizing the importance of empathic leaders. The enduring words of Bloomingdales CEO Michael Gould come to mind:  “I don’t know how you can be a great leader without warmth and humility… People have to trust you and know you always have their back, in the good times and the tougher times. I don’t think you can have too much warmth or too much empathy.”

Ironically, here’s what the hot, new trends have to teach us: attending to the human element is timeless. It’s  a way of leading that reinforces in the hearts and minds of employees that this is a place where they want to work, to contribute, and yes, to serve.
 
Thoughts from Tom
The Voice of Service Leadership Experience-

Tom Larkin, President & CEO of Communico Ltd.


Fascinating that the human element showed up so strongly in this Forbes piece. And, as many leaders know, the ‘automated’ moments of truth do not compete well with the ‘human moments’ of truth. We may be as emotionally angry, but we won’t get satisfaction from a logarithm response.

We heard years ago that live interactions are 66% of the customer’s perception. Leaders know they must keep up with the technological advances – but they won’t be successful without the humans servicing those unique challenges. Thoughtful problem solving and skillful handling of emotionally charged interactions will be key influencers on service ratings – more so than in the past.

Hence, the human will continue to be the critical differentiator for the organization. Employee engagement is vital because of that fact.

Commoditizing for unit cost control is fine for efficiency but when you need an engaged employee to reassure an angry customer or to simplify a complex policy, it’s not an auto response unit that will achieve your service vision.

Have thoughts to share or questions for Tom? Click here to submit.
Is Your Smartphone Making You Dumb?
Ever leave your smartphone behind? If so, you probably have a pretty good idea that your phone is more often controlling you then you are your phone.

Read on for four ways your smartphone Impairs your thinking – and what to do about it
Five Ways to Cultivate Mindfulness at Work
Mindfulness is not a new practice but only recently have we been able to define how it can change the wiring and makeup of our brains.

Read on to learn how you can cultivate mindfulness, and not just at work!
Learn The Value of MAGIC
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To deliver consistently great employee and customer experiences and stand out in the global market, you need to develop a true service culture. Communico is committed to helping organizations create this type of culture with the MAGIC System. Click Here.
Leadership Skills and Coaching
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Communico's leadership training programs, coaching and consulting services are here to help you become an exceptional leader in every interaction (whether by phone, face-to-face, email or chat). Learn how to become a great leader for your business. Click Here.
Customer Service Training
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Communico doesn't believe in a one and done solution. We work closely with you to understand not only your business culture, but also your customer service culture, and what makes it unique. Click Here.
Reinforcement Puzzle #28
Try your hand at word scrambles, crossword puzzles, logic games and more. Use them to support your training, stimulate thinking and reinforce MAGIC principles. Fill them out on your own, or use them for a lively team challenge.

If you'd like to test your knowledge and puzzle prowess, click here to view the latest puzzle.