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Service Challenges of Growth

Filed under In The News, Service Culture

Providing good service while your company grows

Earlier this week AT&T announced its plan to purchase T-Mobile to form the nation’s largest wireless carrier. If the acquisition is approved, the outcome of this new mega-corporation may be both good and bad.

On the positive side of things, current customers of each company hope that they will get better and more reliable wireless access and fewer roaming charges. Conversely, the implications of such a large monopoly in the wireless phone industry may result in fewer options and higher prices for consumers.

But what does fast growth mean for service? We hope that the new merger will bring better customer service, but we fear that our individual voices will get lost in the ever-growing abyss of corporate bureaucracy.  Reflecting on this concept of sudden growth, how can smaller companies–which almost all of us are a part of–learn how to maintain excellent service in the midst of rapid expansion?

The power to provide good service is still in the hands of the individual.

How can this be? We talk about corporate culture, and many times we criticize or praise a business’ service, not an individual’s service. But a business that provides good service does so because they’ve taken the time to carefully train their service professionals. They train them to understand how to capitalize on their personal service styles, while projecting the overall service style of the company.

It is possible to train individuals in the midst of growth. It isn’t necessary to sit down with each employee one by one, spending hours discussing his or her personal service style. But it is crucial to give your employees the tools that will allow them to discover and appreciate their own style.

Human beings aren’t worker bees. We aren’t drones, we aren’t androids (despite our increasing dependence on computers!), and we can’t thrive unless we are allowed to express, on one level or another, our individuality. We can work together to form a common service vision, by understanding our own strengths and weaknesses. Once we embrace our decision to serve others, we can serve them well, no matter how big we become.

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