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Everyone talks about not being able to find good help that will make it past the 90 day probationary period. In spite of the unemployment numbers, some service oriented businesses cannot find good help.  Yet others seem to have few problems attracting and keeping excellent staff members who deliver outstanding service and commitment to customers.

What are the secrets of success for those companies who don’t seem burdened with high employee turnover?  Let’s take a lesson or two from the master in setting the Gold Standard in the hospitality industry; The Ritz Carlton!

At the Ritz they have a simply menu for developing people; selection, listening and celebrating. Here’s how this proven philosophy can be transferred to your cleaning business.

Selection:  Possibly the most important aspect of the entire journey to reaching the Gold Standard in Service;  Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have a profile of the applicant who has been the most successful in your company?
  • Do you select employees from a qualified pool or do you hire people coming into your office who can pass the breathing test?
  • Have you taken the time to actually think about the personalities of the successful key employees in your organization and identify the common traits? This is your profile.
  • Does panic and immediate need take precedence over patient selection?
  • What is your selection process? Does it involve several interviews?

By taken the time to put into writing your ideal candidate profile and a process for selecting potential employees from a pool of qualified applicants, you will find the the end result to be worth the time and effort it took to develop the process.  Hire slowly and fire quickly.

Listening: One of the most important traits of a strong leader is the ability to listen to the voices of those he/she leads. The front line employees most always have better solutions to issues because they are in the trenches daily having to deal with problems that may not be on the radar of management.  Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do I take the time to listen to what my employees are telling me?
  • Do I respect their opinions and listen to them with a positive ear?
  • Engaging an employee by listening, talking and respecting them will enhance their experience in working for your company. When an employee is engaged in the company values and mission, they will not be inclined to leave.

The employees in your company represent the core values and the foundation of your organization.  Treating them with respect will only enhance the experience your customers have when doing business with you.

Celebrating:  Most companies celebrate employee birthdays or special achievements.  But how many celebrate the anniversary of the start date for each employee.  At the Ritz those anniversaries are celebrated with certificates, cakes, flowers, and in some cases watches. When you create an environment of respect and treat employees as you would want them to treat you or your customers, it is not difficult to reach the Gold Standard of Service.  Everyone has the same pool of employees from which to choose.  What makes your people perform better, stay with you longer and give your customers the Royal Treatment at every touch?  Select, Listen and Celebrate!

*The New Gold Standard~ Joseph Michelli.

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