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Empowering your employees

T he most important aspect of maintaining an amazing customer support or service team is that your team feels most empowered to do the one thing that really matters for their career: helping the customer. But, it can be difficult for them to help the customer if there is a ton of process and policy in place blocking them from doing what they think is right. Working in a job with little say about what you do and how you do it doesn’t bring joy or happiness, and certainly won’t keep someone coming back to their job day-in-and-day-out. Try to focus on ways that you can give your employees autonomy, even if just in small ways, over what they do.

A great place to start is to examine where you are setting harsh rules that could be guidelines instead. These are usually the easiest areas for surprise and delight in a customer’s experience with your company along with being one of the best places to offer your employee some flex. It’s a win-win. An example that everyone can probably relate to is: how do you handle refunds? If a product is defective, or the person had an issue with shipping or purchase, the policy should be obvious: issue a refund. But what if the product wasn’t as someone expected, or they got it and no longer want it anymore? That makes it a little bit trickier.

In those cases, offer guidelines for how a person might handle the situation, but leave it up to the best judgment of the support agent handling the ticket. This empowers them in letting them know they’re allowed to make choices, and it gives them the opportunity to reap the benefits of delighting the customer with something they might not have expected.