What would you pay for better customer service?

The American Express Global Customer Service Barometer found that Australians will pay more – in fact, up to 12% more if they just got better service.

Apparently we are among the unhappiest customers in the world.

I find this interesting given that Gallup polls have been telling us for years that we have the second most disengaged workforce in the world – after the French.

And guess what?

“An international study across 10 countries exploring public attitudes towards customer service has found that 40 per cent of Australians feel that businesses fail to meet their expectations. Only the French were more dissatisfied.”

Most business leaders know of the satisfaction mirror: That is those companies that have highly engaged workforces will have far more loyal customers.

Would you pay for better customer service? What if you paid more and still got ‘average’ service, then wouldn’t you be even more disappointed?

This is not rocket science. In fact, it is so simple to improve. If people are happy at work they will deliver happy service. And a big step towards happy employees is simply to recognise their contribution.

Only 32% of Australian businesses have a formal recognition program – perhaps it is time that all Australian businesses lifted their game. Because lifting prices without spending on employees is going to have even more people shopping online and going elsewhere.

I’m committed to every Australian being happy and recognised in their workplace. But not every ‘boss’ sees the great work that their employees do. for instance, a bus driver, shop assistant, flight attendant or a mining engineer working ‘in the field’ directly with their customers. So it is up to us as customers to acknowledge the great work these people do.

If we are happy customers – authentically thanking those delivering us service – it will become infectious. And the happy employee will ‘pass it on’.

I am just in the final stages of delivering my new little book Five Thanks a Day… but in the meantime, why not thank someone publicly and share your story with me about who you would like to thank. Ultimately, you will make their day and maybe we won’t feel we need to pay 12% more to get good service. We will simply pay a compliment.

Will you take on thanking five people a day? Let me know.

Naomi Simson is considered to be one of Australia’s Best Bosses. An employee engagement advocate, she practises what she preaches in her own fast growth business. RedBalloon was named as one of only 13 BRW Best Employers in Australia in 2012 for four years in a row with an engagement scorecard of over 90% in each of those years – the average in Australian businesses is 54%.

One of Australia’s outstanding entrepreneurs, Naomi regularly entertains as a passionate speaker, a blogger and a published author, most recently publishing Five Thanks a Day. She has received many accolades and awards for the business she founded, RedBalloon.com.au including the 2011 Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur of the Year – Industry.

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