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Are you being served? Part II
Is customer care in the GCC up to scratch? Communicate magazine investigates. Part II
November 9, 2009 10:35 by Rania Habib
Ghose also emphasizes the importance of staff training, because when a staff member is talking to a customer, he says the brand is effectively talking to that customer. “People want to interact with an actual human being,” he says.
“Staff here don’t generally feel liberated or empowered to actually be the brand champions. But each one of the guys on the shop floor, they are the brand champions, not the CEO and not the manager. The most important thing to do is train the staff to understand what the brand exists to do. Secondly, it’s important to allow staff to understand and deliver brand’s values, because every brand has values to deliver. Staff are like actors on a stage, they have to be given a script.”
“One of the things I found so interesting in the survey is that staff very rarely make recommendations,” continues Ghose. “This signals a lack of connection between staff and customers, because staff feel they are there to serve, not to deliver and suggest. But the staff have to do the thinking for the customer, so they have to feel liberated. It doesn’t matter if you’re Filipino or Indian or a wealthy local, as a member of staff you have to be empowered, and know that you’re acting on behalf of a great brand you’re working for.”
Attitudes are beginning to change, though; according to Sparks, increasing competition will drive the market in the right direction. “As both local and international competition increases it will be those companies that really understand what it takes to make a satisfied customer that will make it to the top,” she says.
“Many Gulf retailers understand this and Grass Roots has seen a steady increase in demand for our performance measurement services in this region.”