If you’re a retail owner, then you should think of your staff as the face of your company. While you may be managing things behind the scenes, it’s your register operators, merchandisers and customer service representatives who will be interacting with shoppers, making sure they have a good experience. For this reason, it’s essential you remind your employees on a regular basis to be polite, friendly and helpful, or else you may find your sales plummeting. Here are some tips on how to make sure your workers are on their best behavior.
Politeness vs. friendliness
There is only a subtle difference between politeness and friendliness, but it’s important that your workers know how to exude both. Politeness means adhering to the basic manners of human interaction. In other words, it means saying please, thank you and you’re welcome, treating everyone with respect, and making eye contact when speaking. You may think that these traits come naturally to everyone, but you may find that some employees don’t automatically say “thank you” when finishing up a sale. Keep an eye out for employees whose manners may be slipping, and remind them that politeness is essential to their job.
Friendliness, on the other hand, goes beyond just the p’s and q’s. To be friendly, workers must smile at customers, listen carefully to what shoppers have to say and generally display a warmth and kindness that makes customers want to come back for more. Even the most polite of workers can come off cold if he or she hasn’t mastered the art of friendliness, so be sure to hammer home this point as well.
Balancing manners with work
During the busy times of year, like the holiday season, your workers will probably find themselves stretched thin, and their manners may suffer because of it. It can be tricky when you’re trying to clean up messy display tables or wrap a gift with wholesale ribbon to keep a smile on your face and also be available to answer questions. When hiring employees, be sure to ask them about their ability to multitask. It’s a crucial skill in the retail world, and will help make sure that they keep a smile on even when the store is more chaotic than usual.