High Service, Not High PressureSeptember 1, 2022
It’s a tough world out there for new businesses, and the pressure to achieve success can be overwhelming at times. What makes us react to these situations by increasing pressure on our teams and ourselves rather than decreasing it? If you know me, you probably know what’s coming next: inconsistency.
Pressure is a part of every aspect of life: work, hobbies, life – it’s always around. What I have found through experience and research over the years is that consistency is the key to maintaining ourselves. Look at the situations where you have found yourself making mistakes, bad decisions, or unfairly adding more stress to yourself or others. I guarantee you will find a spike – something that broke your routine so much that it caused a drastic change in the pressure you were feeling.
These spikes force us out of our comfort zones, spike our adrenaline, and can cause us to react without clearly thinking through our actions. So what can you do about it? Be consistent.
Consistency In Service
If you explode every time you find a mistake and take it out on your employees or yourself, you are not only raising negative pressure on everyone, you are most likely not solving the problem. Service in a business is a culture, the way the owner expects the business to operate. That means that you, as the owner, need to ensure that your employees have consistency.
In their interactions with each other, your customers, and you, as well as in their training and expectations, consistency will ensure that problems will often be prevented in the first place, but also resolved quickly and effectively when they occur.
Your employees are helping you make money – don’t you want them working at their best capacity? Provide them with the best service possible, as their boss, by supporting them and ensuring that they have a consistent culture to fall back on in moments of high stress and high pressure.
If you have a consistent culture in your workplace, an emphasis on service, and a model from the top for them to follow, you will see your team perform at their best every time. Not only that, but they will want to perform their best because they know they have the consistency they need to succeed.
Consistency Under Pressure
We’re all only human, as I know all too well, so you have to understand that you are going to make mistakes, and so are your employees. It happens. What you do next is what matters.
High pressure situations will always occur so long as we are dealing with humans. Everyone is different, so conflicts and disagreements are going to happen. A customer is going to become upset, machines are going to break down, the power is going to go out, or the Internet is going to go down. Sooner or later you’ll have to deal with these sorts of things in business.
Are you prepared for these things? Or do you just react when they occur?
One of the things that I hear a lot from people is that they are facing “unexpected delays or difficulties” at their business. That’s the wrong terminology – they should be saying they are facing “temporary” delays or difficulties. To say that one of these sorts of events is unexpected is like sticking your head in the sand and pretending they don’t happen!
In order to be consistent in high pressure situations, your employees need to be prepared for circumstances at your workplace in a way that is defined by you – the owner. You should have clear guidelines for what should be done in difficult situations, like an angry customer or a power outage. If you have your employees practice and learn them, you can reasonably expect these potential high pressure situations to become high service.
Turning High Pressure Into High Service
The reality is that no matter how great your service or product is, no matter how wonderful your team is, you are going to eventually have a customer that cannot be consoled or saved. You can’t account for every single person in the world even with the best plans and preparation.
But you can account for high pressure situations by creating a consistent environment where both your customers and your team can expect a certain outcome, and by training your team to look for opportunities to serve your customers.
Having a procedure for when a customer comes in with a concern or ensuring your staff can follow that procedure is one part of consistency. But if they know that if they do they are doing what was asked of them they can do so with confidence and the knowledge that they are being supported. They feel safe, and that is going to help keep the pressure from exploding into an emotional outburst.
If you have a set expectation for a certain number of products to be made, calls to be answered, or whatever you need from them, that’s a start. But what happens if they don’t meet those goals? What is the procedure for making up the differences? Are you respecting their time, and are they respecting yours?
By being consistent, providing the solutions you expect, and empowering your team members, you can turn those potentially high pressure situations into an opportunity to demonstrate the service you expect your customers to have.
The Power Of Consistency
Consistency is a mainstay of my philosophy and my success. By reducing the high pressure effect and turning that into part of your work culture, you can see changes in your business in no time.
You can learn more about how to utilize consistency to enhance your personal life and your business life with my online training programs. You can also read my book The Power of Consistency for proven tools and techniques to make consistency work for you. Find out more at www.weldonlong.com.