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How staff attitude affects the bottom line

posted almost 5 years ago

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I strongly believe that every company needs great staff to be a great business. Take the John Lewis Partnership. They treat their staff with respect.  It shines through in the way the staff treat their customers. As a result, customers go back time and again.  My mission is to help my clients to have great staff and therefore, a great business too.

This month I’ve been a customer of two local businesses. I think the way the staff treated me speaks for volumes about their employers.  It also has a direct effect on where I will be spending my money in future.

The florist…. 

I bought some flowers for a friend. I thought the bunch I picked was lovely but the lady at the till was not happy.

Before selling the bunch to me, she looked at the contents and decided two stems were not as fresh as they should be. She could have easily made that sale.  Instead she asked me to chose another.  Had the flowers quickly died, I probably wouldn’t have gone back to complain.  What I would have done is complained to others and chosen never to go back there.  Instead, I know that I will go back again and again in the future, confident the bunch I buy will last.

I throughly recommend Welwyn Florist.

The restaurant….

Contrast that to the local restaurant.  I wanted to book at table for 6 people.  I was told politely but firmly that they only took bookings for 8 or more.  I asked what time the restaurant was likely to get busy.  She told me that “in January, you should be able to walk straight in”.  I said “if you won’t be busy, could you take a booking for 6 people?” “No” she replied.  “The minimum booking number is 8”.

You won’t be surprised to learn we went somewhere else.  I don’t plan to go there again – why would I?  It does not matter what the food is like, if the staff put you off, you’ll go somewhere else.  There are plenty of other places to eat after all.

How do your staff become great?

I know that the florist I met was not the business owner.  I suspect the lady in the restaurant wasn’t either.  The difference is, one was motivated to do what was right for the business in the long term. The other was not.   Your customers base their decisions on their interactions with your staff. If you don’t have great staff, it will affect your business.  It will affect your bottom line.

Article written by Parallel HR's Debbie Glinnan, Futureactive's trusted HR partner, see more at