Customer Perspective: Staff Behavior

Wrapping up this week of looking at our stores from the customer’s perspective, we’ll end with the most difficult observation of all: the staff.

Do members of your staff…

  • … greet customers in a timely manner?
  • … smile when they answer the phone?
  • … check in with customers as they browse?

Or negatively, do they…

  • … look at their cell phones while on the sales floor?
  • … have conversations with each other instead of helping customers?
  • … ignore customers because they are busy with their tasks?

Can they be identified as staff through name tags, uniform, apron, etc? Customers hate to ask, “Do you work here?”

Do they give up when the book isn’t on the shelf, or do they make the extra effort to help the customer?

At check out…

  • … do they say aloud, “Out of ten?” when accepting a $10 bill for payment? This will help prevent the “But I gave you a twenty…” comment that might follow later.
  • … do they ask for a photo id when the customer requests it on their credit card?
  • … do they count back change?

These things might seem trivial, but they help give the customer piece of mind, and you’re helping to ensure the cash drawer doesn’t end up short at the end of the day.

I know it can be difficult to look at ourselves and our staff in a critical manner. If you don’t think you can do so objectively, it might not be a bad idea to hire a mystery shopper. In this “perception is reality” world, the outside perception is the only one that matters.

Beth Golay

Beth is a reader, writer, marketer and Books & Whatnot founder. Even though she knows better, she’s a sucker for a good book cover and will positively swoon if a book is set in appropriate type.

@BethGolay