Happy Employees Equals Customer Satisfaction

A happy employee almost always translates into customer satisfaction.
A happy employee almost always translates into customer satisfaction. (iStock photo)

My wife and I enjoyed a brief jaunt through Epcot this weekend. Leadership lessons were as plentiful as the flowers.

I've read volumes about how Disney achieves high guest satisfaction levels while serving massive crowds. The most basic lesson of all in achieving high customer satisfaction is to first achieve employee satisfaction.

The initial step in measuring satisfaction is to first complete an employee satisfaction report; this is sometimes called a climate survey. In my experience, leaders don't conduct enough climate surveys. Perhaps some leaders don't really want to know how their employees feel.

But employee feelings about their job are observable through customer satisfaction measurement. Isn't it axiomatic that if employees are not happy, customers won't be happy? There's a big DUH in here somewhere.

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I met a young, red-head assistant manager of a nice Epcot restaurant. He's married and his wife has a baby due any day. We spoke to him about three times during the evening. I'm not fun on a date!

I learned that the restaurant is not owned by Disney but a third-party company. I asked about his training path to assistant manager. He told me how much he learned in the kitchen, which made his front-end service so much better.

He raved about how much he liked his company. When I asked about where he was headed next, he just knew he wanted to work with his current employer in any capacity. His response was very non-millennial, but he wasn't over 25 years old.

During his next visit to the table I asked him about his core responsibilities as he roamed the floor. His answer told me all I needed to know about customer satisfaction at the restaurant. I didn't need to do a guest survey.

"My goal on every shift is to make sure every guest experience is all they hoped it would be." (The food was amazing and value priced.)

I so wanted to make duplicate copies of this powerhouse red head.

I watched him work tables. When he walked away, customers were smiling. The axiom held up well in the heat of a blazing kitchen and full restaurant. In the face of stress on every aspect of the machine ... guest satisfaction prevailed with WOW ... because employees loved their work.

Leaders, does your team love their work? Do they do what they do because a leader empowers them to excel?

Customer satisfaction erupts from a team of happy employees.

I think I'll start checking for hair color on resumes.

Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president of the media group at Charisma Media and executive producer of the Charisma Podcast Network. His book, Love Leads: The Spiritual Connection Between Your Relationships and Productivity, is now available.

Leaders, Dr. Greene wants to help you understand the spiritual connection between relationships and productivity. Read his new blog, Love Leads.

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Dr. Steve Greene is now sharing stories, teachings, and conversations with guests who lead with love on Love Leads, a new podcast. Listen now.


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