Dr. Michael Ahearne of the University of Houston shared research this week that pointed to a dynamic shift from transactional to trusting customer relationships through the emergence of the COVID19 pandemic. We've seen insight into how to work from home more efficiently. With theory becoming a sustained reality, it is now time for human beings to adapt and persevere.
Additionally, there has been a noticeable transition from quantitative to qualitative measurements of organizational success. This means keeping an acute focus of revenue while changing the measures by which to get there.
I've authored several articles on the importance of Behavioral Modeling in the past. Whether you create performance pillars based in intrinsic motivators or you subscribe to the SCARF methodology to guide manager/employee relationships, the time is now to shift focus.
To evolve workforce strategy, Total Rewards teams are presented an opportunity to marry compensation and benefits strategy. This new normal will be rooted in technology. With an already intense strain on HRIS teams, the deployment of Human Capital Management technology may be an additional unmet need. Here, the opportunity for field management to utilize existing platforms will bring historically fragmented parties together in partnership.
Work with What You've Got
With goals shifting from individual to team-based, competition will give way to collaboration. This synergy will produce an avenue for engagement at higher levels than in the past. Collective achievement can have a more profound impact than individual employees taking all the credit. Those of greatest contribution can still be recognized while complemented by a grander strategy based on collaborative advancement.
We've seen this before. The retail banking scandal of the last decade moved tellers from transaction-based selling goals to a more responsible customer support model. It may come as a surprise but customers added more products to their portfolio and the terms of customer relationships were lengthened.
So we are calling upon individuals to be a bigger part of the collective. How do we measure that?
1. Put qualitative performance pillars in place
b. System Population
c. Training Completion
2. Measure the above systematically
a. Manager Coaching
b. Badging for Milestone Completion
You'll see how these formally assumed "fluff" programs become measurable and actionable.
With the carrot now affixed at the end of a longer stick, will employees continue to be motivated?
As budgets shift, you'll have plenty of opportunities to reward employees for short term goal attainment through non-cash rewards and save compensation bonuses for overall measured production.
The Jerry Maguire Rule
"We are losing our battle with all that is personal and real about our business" - Jerry Maguire
The above excerpt is from Jerry Maguire's mission statement entitled "The Things We Think and Do Not Say." With the extraordinary financial strain of COVID19-related work adjustments, this mission statement is more relevant than ever. As Dr. Ahearne further exemplified in his research, bringing value to clients will be the only way to retain them. Similar to the unwritten agreement employers have with their employees, now more than ever, trust will drive client relationships.
What does this mean?
Robotic approaches to customer service will not sustain. Sales professionals will need to invest deeply in knowledge attainment of customer needs and how to solve business challenges. Organizational leaders will have to be realistic while creating inspiration at level they may have shied away from in the past.
The road ahead will be rocky and no one can see the bridge to stability quite yet. It would be great to have simple answers, but there are none.
Now is the time to invest in employee development and put customers first. Advocacy will win the day... One day at a time!
Originally published on Dave's Weekly Thought blog.
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