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Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 1
  • Notable Quotable: "dealing with people is probably the biggest problem you face, especially if you are in business." - Dale Carnegie
  • Notable Quotable: "The way you handle your employees is the way your employee handles a customer." - Dr. Robert Zoellner
  • Ask Yourself: Do I set a good example for my employees to follow?
  • Notable Quotable: "Every great business is built on friendship." - JC Penney

codeacademy for customer service training

-What's up, guys? My name is Daniel McKenna. I am the executive producer and official hype man here at Thrive15.

Today, we have Clay Clark and Dr. Robert Zoellner giving you the info. We're talking about quality control in this customer service training. And we're talking about the link between customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction.

So here's the deal. If your employees don't feel satisfied, if they don't enjoy what they're doing, if they don't enjoy the job they're working, they're probably not going to translate that over to your customers very well. So we got to get that link established, we got to get the employees feeling good, so they make your customers feel good so you can keep making a little bit more money.

Here at Thrive, we believe that knowledge without application is meaningless. Unless you take the time to learn something today in this customer service training, to actually apply it to your life or your business, watching today's lesson is going to be more meaningless than eating Taco Bell while you're at the gym.

-Dr. Z, how are you, my friend?

-Clay, I'm great. How are you doing?

-I'm doing well. And I just found that you're going to a wedding tonight. I'm going to a wedding tonight. I realize we're not going to the same wedding, and so--

-Are you DJing at yours?

-No. I'm not allowed to do that anymore.


-My wife has sort of put the kibosh down on it.


-Because the thing is--

-I bet you sometimes fantasize about sneaking out of the house and going to some random wedding and getting up and ninja-moving the guy out of the way and DJing it.

-This is the thing. I'm not good at math. I'm not really-- there's a lot of things I'm not good at-- sports and these kind of things. But one thing I can do is I can DJ the heck out of a party. And so my thing is like, I am pretty awesome and--

-We all have our super power. It is great when you find out what it is.

-Yeah. And it stinks that mine takes me away from family on weekends. So I have to just not think about it. So thanks for bringing that up, though.

But OK. Here we go. So we're talking about the link between customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction.


-And so, Dr. Z, before we deep dive into this, I just want to give people who are watching this a context, just so they can understand a little bit of the tapestry that has made up your career.


-When you started your first business, it was you and--

-One other person in an optometry office.

-So you and another person.


-And did you have a lot of cash at that point?


-So just you and another person starting out?


-Now today, how many employees are there?

-Well, in all my businesses total, probably around 200.

-OK. So near 200 now. So when we talk about how to deal with employees, you know something about that.

-A little bit, yes.

-So in your businesses now-- Dale Carnegie has this quote that I think really relates to what you're doing in your businesses, and I just want to read this to you. Dale Carnegie's the bestselling author of How to Win Friends and Influence People. He says, "Dealing with people is probably the biggest problem you face, especially if you're in business."


-Why was it so hard when you were starting out and why is it so hard for many small business owners to manage employees in a way that the employees are doing what they're supposed to do? But also, then, not so bitter that they're taking it out on customers? Why is it so hard to hold the employee accountable, but to do it in a way where they're not so upset after how you've been so brutal in holding them accountable that they take it out on customers? How do you-- why is it so hard?

-It's so important. Because the way you handle your employees is oftentimes the way an employee handles a customer. In other words, they are learning from you.

It's crazy, but when you have an office and you come in, and you're in a bad mood and you've had a bad day and you're in a bad mood, and you snip at someone, and you're like, why isn't that done? And you get the trash. What's going on around here? And you kick a door and you walk off. Guess what?

-The emotional state of your office is messed up now, right?

-Right. And they do the same thing to customers that walk in the door. That's why it's so important for you to understand that you set the tone. So if you want to show-- or you want to tell your employees how to treat a customer, show them how to do it by how you treat them.

-That's awesome. I think anybody here that's watching this-- I know as I hear that, I don't care who you are, whether we all do that better.


-I think that's huge.

-Now Dr. Z, the founder of JCPenney-- back before the fall, back before-- now, I don't want to get in trouble for any negative statements, but JCPenney-- it's a historical fact-- has taken a little bit of a hit in recent years here.


-I still love the place. I try to go there as much as possible. But before they took a little bit of a hit, their founder-- in their heyday-- he said-- JC Penney himself-- he said, "Every great business is built on friendship." Now to me, that's great to say. But what have you done in your businesses to try to build great relationships with your customers and your employees simultaneously?

-Well, you do one and the other, but you do the same thing. And one of the things that I did with my employees is spend time with them. And a great way to do that is that we would celebrate victories.

For example, I'd say, OK guys, we had a record month. On Tuesday, when we lock down the door, we're going to have a pizza party. And I'm taking everybody bowling. And we're going to go spend a few hours bowling and eating pizza together and hanging out.

-I want to ask you this question because this matters to me.


-You said you celebrated victories?


-You didn't just celebrate life? I mean, example, would you be like, it's Clay's birthday. Or it's Tuesday-- it's St. Patrick's Day. Or would you normally celebrate victories, or does it matter?

-Both. I mean, if you did everything to celebrate, and you knew it was time to draw everybody together, you found something to celebrate, you know?

-It's Tuesday.

-It's Tuesday. And it's Clay's birthday and St. Patrick's Day is in six months, you know? You do try to do that. But it's more fun when you can wrap it up. The point of the matter is you need to do it, anyway.


-It's fun whenever you think, hey wow, we had a record month, so we get this treat, we get this reward. And that draws people to say-- you put the importance of hey, that was important. Hey, we had a big sale. That was important.

Hey, we did this. That was important. Hey, we did that. That was important.

Hey, nobody screwed up real bad today. Let's celebrate. Find something and go celebrate. But spend time with them. And if you're nice to them and you listen to them and you are concerned about them and you're there to help them be the best that they can be, then what happens is they see their leader and how they're treated.

And for the most part, when someone is nice to someone-- hey, Clay. I hope you're having a great day, you know? Now, it's a lot easier for you to be nice to the next person.

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 2
  • "it's not one of the enduring mysteries of all time. A motivated employee treats the customer well. A customer is happy so they'll keep coming back, which pleases the shareholder. It's just the way it works." - Herb Kelleher
  • Ask Yourself: How well do I know my employees? Do I love them and keep them accountable at the same time?
  • Lesson Nugget: Employees and kids want good rules, good structure, and good love.
  • Lesson Nugget: The key is finding the balance between loving your employees and holding them accountable.
  • "Profit in business comes from repeat customers; customers that boast about your product and service, and that bring friends with them." - Edwards Deming


-OK, now here's the deal, I'm going to grab my lightening rod, and we're going into lightening round. I'm going to batter you with some quick questions.

-OK, bring them on.

-Here we go, here we go.

-Bring them on.

-All flattery aside, I know people who've worked for you--


- --who say this guy is hard to work for, he is demanding, but I love it.


-And I've continued to work there for 10 years.


-How are you able to be so inspiring to people and wowing your customers, while still holding people accountable? How are you doing it? And don't tell me it's your personality, what do you do?

-Steve Carell said it on "The Office" better than I've ever heard it said, and that is he said, do I want people to fear me more, or love me more? Both. I want people to fear how much they love me.


-It's parenting, it comes down to parenting. A parent is not a best friend, but yet a parent can be friendly. A parent is not-- you're a-- I mean, the thing about parenting is, that I have found, is that good rules, good structure, and good love is what kids really want. It's what employees want, or what people want.

-Good rules, good structure, good love.



-I'm not sure I-- I might change that around some if I wanted to. But the idea is that you have a good understanding, and then you follow through with it, your consistent with them, but you're also reasonable with them. You're not a hot head, you're not over the top, if discipline is needed, you give discipline out in a loving way. But yet you do do it. I think the parents, or even like a teacher in school, that is not disciplined is no fun to be around. They may be the sweetest person, but yet you don't really respect them much.

-Now there's all sorts of research out there that shows that a happy employee makes a happy customer, like you were mentioning earlier.


-And in fact the founder of Southwest Airlines, Herb Kelleher, this is a quote that he says, he says, "it's not one of the enduring mysteries of all time. A motivated employee treats the customer well. A customer is happy so they'll keep coming back, which pleases the shareholder. It's just the way it works."


-And it's just the way it works. It seems obvious, but very few business owners that I know seem to be able to hold their staff accountable, while also keeping employees happy. Why?

-Well, because people get too heavy handed. People-- the pendulum doesn't-- they're not balanced, they're not doing it out of love, they're doing it out of anger. It's kind of like disciplining your child, they say you should never spank your child when you're mad at them, you should always wait until you settle down and then do the discipline on the individual. Same thing in employees, I mean, it's not a lot a rocket science, and it's well established that if you are calm, if you are loving, and if you do it the right mindset, people receive it better.

Whether they receive it or not, you still have to do it. And then you have to follow up with also encouragement. That's why if you're just always Negative Nancy, and you're never Positive Peter, then you know it's not good. I mean, you want to-- if they do something right-- and another thing to is, and I know this sounds a little crazy, a little out there, but understanding your employee's personality, understanding their love language, and understanding what motivates them and how you can communicate with them is a big deal.

-For instance, my love language is talking about business and the auto auction.

-Your love language is probably words of encouragement.

-Yeah, that's probably true, and stuff. But anyway, moving on. So hey--

-I'm just saying--




-So hey, Clay, you did a great job today. That patient yesterday complimented on you, you did awesome. I mean, now you're going to run through a brick wall-- oh, but by the way, you didn't pick up the trash around the building, it's on your checklist. Would you mind going and knocking that out, before we get going for the day? Thanks man, you're the best. So--

-I love that.

-Built you up, also--

-I kind of started feeling good too, and then I forgot we were role playing there. I started feeling really good about what i did for the patient--


-Now, let me ask you this here. Years ago, I worked with a person who was in the medical business, and she had a front desk person that just never showed up on time. Never cleaned the patient rooms, never seemed to answer the phone properly, but she kept being told by the business owner that you're doing a good job, you're doing a good job, but it was not a good job. And then one day the owner comes in, and is like what is your issue? And it was just this sort of weird polarity, that's what you're talking about, right?


-It's that sort of--

-You've got to be honest--


-You've got to be honest. People-- you know, you can only fool people for so long. You've got to be honest with them. But if they're doing a good job acknowledging-- then give them that. So many people are out there running around, trying to-- they're looking for someone to be honest with them, that it's so refreshing. People want that, hey, we need to do this, we need to do this, we need to do this, but you're doing this great.

And then you've got to be honest with yourself, because that business owner is lying to themselves, is what they're doing. And they're hurting their business, and they're long limiting membrane in that area.

-Now let me ask you this here, W. Edwards Deming, he is kind of the quality control expert, he was famous for helping Japan learn how to mass produce vehicles and these sorts of things. And he says, "profit in business comes from repeat customers; customers that boast about your product and service, and that bring friends with them."

What are some of the systems or processes that you've implemented in your companies-- because you have many of them, and you're not at all of the businesses every day-- what are some of the systems or policies you've set up, to make sure the employees feel valued, and therefore they treat customers well?

-Good question. I think some of the simple things, we do an employee of the month. I think we do evaluations on a regular basis, we do-- whenever I get the opportunity-- just the other day, I had a company that wanted to take me out to dinner. I said, well the only way you get to take me out to dinner, is you have to take out 20 of my employees with me.


-Yes, and they said, OK. So we went out and had this lovely steak dinner, it was just a tremendous evening. And the whole time they were there talking with me, and I was pretty much working the whole night. And every time I'd get up and look around the room, there were 19 smiling, happy, fun, having a great time, on their faces employees around me.

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 3
  • Ask Yourself: Is my love for my business contagious in the office?
  • "We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It's our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better." - Jeff Bezos
  • Lesson Nugget: It is your job to provide incentives for your employees and to keep them happy.
  • Lesson Nugget: Always set high expectations for yourself and your employees. Never be satisfied with the status quo.


-Let's say that I am watching this, and I own a hardware store. What are-- and I have maybe 10 employees-- what are some of the systems that you'd recommend I might set up, or policies to make sure that my staff is happy, therefore, wowing customers.

-First of all, you gotta make sure you're happy. You got to make sure you're enjoying going to work. If you don't like the hardware industry, and if you don't like going into that store, and you like getting up in the morning going to work, it's going to be really tough to do any of these other things.

So you've got to get it wrapped around in your own head that you enjoy being there, you want to be there, you're looking forward to being there, and you're having a good time being there. Now, once you get your attitude right, once you get yourself correct, you could walk in that store. And you can be the light bulb of happiness and joy that you need to be.

And every time they look at you, they can't walk away but smile. Every time, they want to be around you. They want to learn from you. They want to have you as their leader. Once you get that mindset, the rest of it's pretty easy. The rest of it is understanding what it is that those people makes them click.

Because I promise you, you gather them up, and you treat them like family. And you love on them, and you ask about how their grandchild's doing. You ask about what's going on. You ask about their honeymoon they just went on. You know about their life. You know about them. You know their name. You care about them. And you show them, guess what?

It just, the whole office just lifts up a couple notches. And you could throw some stuff, and then you can add some stuff. You can do random little bonuses. You can do employee of the month-- make a big deal out and give them a few hundred bucks. You can do all kinds of celebration things.

Make sure you know everybody's birthdays-- have them programed them in. Make sure you do a little celebration for that. Find out what's important to them, and then do that. And I promise you your productivity's going to go up. The level of joy is going to go up. The attendance at work's going to go up.

If you create a work environment that they like being in because you like being their first, boy, it just changed the whole atmosphere. Changes the whole-- people walk in that business go I don't even need to buy a hammer. But I just want to come in here. Because there's something about it. And that's that intangible that you can put on there, OK?

-Now, Jeff Bezos is the founder of Amazon. This is the last question I have here for you.


-Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, he says, "We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are all the hosts. It's our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little better."

I know your companies would not be doing so well if you hadn't built the first successful one, then the second, then the third. How do you make an intentional effort to make your companies a little better, year after year?

-Well, you find out what you can improve upon. You research that. You're always thinking of how to make a mousetrap better. You're always thinking how to improve upon the service-- you do that by a number of ways. You need to watch a lot more videos on Thrive15.com to pick up all those things.

But you incorporate those into your business, and then what you do is you also set those expectations. You set those expectations on yourself. You set those expectations on your people. And you say, status quo is not-- we're always measuring off of last year's same month, comp sales.

We're looking for growth. A healthy businesses is a growing business. And so we're growing. And we're being healthy, and we're trying to figure out how to do it better.

And guess what? We might try something and go no, that's not better. But you're always trying to improve upon it, and grow upon it, so--

-You're always trying to wow people it seems like. You won't stop until they're wowed.

-Yeah, and then when they get used to that wow, you got to bring another wow.

-And that deserves a wow. But hey, Doctor Z.--


-I appreciate you imparting your knowledge there to the Thrivers here. But I will say if you're watching this, and you don't know the full context of Doctor Z.-- you run an auto auction, couldn't be any more different than the kind of employees that you have who need to work in an optometry clinic, couldn't be any more different than the people who are monitoring people at the sleep center and figuring out their sleep patterns.

It couldn't be any more different than-- you have a lot of different businesses but these same principles can work at any kind of business. So I encourage you not just to watch, but to apply these things. Because they can absolutely bless you. Thank you so much brother. You bet, Clay.

-Take care.

-Keep Thriving.

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