Sara over at the The Curious Shopper, has a great blog post about her creative means to adhere to a bank’s policy for not serving customers at their drive-up window who are not in cars while satisfying her desperate need to deposit a check without a car (be sure to read this post!). She went on to relate the effects such policies have on employees. One great quote is:
If you limit people, they will behave with a limited outlook. They’ll blindly follow rules because they weren’t trained to think otherwise. But if you trust people, and empower them with training, they will see the rules from the viewpoint of the customer.
Policies only tend to create mindless actions. In other words:
I think what we need here are guiding principles and not policies. Give your employees principles to judge customer service situations and not a thick policy manual to memorize. These guiding principles should:
- Be constructed from the customer’s point of view
- Be easy enough for everyone to understand and put into practice
- Allow the well-trained employee to have full autonomy to make decisions quickly
- Be part of the company culture