When I wrote the original WAVES For Teenage Workforce Success book in 2008, I wrote briefly about how employers should engage this workforce through social media... however, I don't think that was the term for it then.
The only platform mentioned for employers to consideration was MySpace. Remember that? And that was only 6 years ago.
When the 2nd edition was published just a couple of years later in 2010, I had to delete any mention of MySpace and replace it with Facebook. Certainly by then there were more employers using this platform as their first steps into this new thing called social media. I had worked with dozens of employers of high school and college age employees that were finding success in communicating with their workforce this way. In fact many were amazed that non responsive employees prior, were now fully engaged, and contributing at work in ways that the employer didn't think possible! They were speaking their language.
I have used this photo for dozens of presentations I have given to leadership teams of amusement parks and other leisure time venues, on the topic of growing sales and profit.
The message... If you want to get the attention of today's consumers... you better stand out.
Laying on the beach in Cabo San Lucas, you will experience a never ending stream of vendors. They are like white noise... a constant with their presence. Simply a part of the beach and vacation experience.
And they sell everything. Jewelry, sunglasses, wood carvings, hair braids and bracelets, souvenirs, t-shirts and hats, mangos and margaritas, boat tours, booze cruises and jet ski adventures, time shares,and much, much more. You'll likely even be offered a few things that are illegal on this side of the border.
We all have experiences that have a lasting impact… and that you just know are transferrable. When it comes to customer service experiences, we are all experts on this… as we are all customers. We know what service we like…and we know what annoys us. I appreciate when a team member makes the first move and "makes contact" with me when I enter a place of business. It shows that they care and where their priority lies.
Here's my "customer service" story;
In the area I live there used to be a locally owned coffee shop. They were ahead of their time. Well themed, nice dining area and outdoor patio, occasional entertainment, fantastic coffee... and when they first opened for business, they had great customer service. The owner was always there. You were greeted when you walked in. The staff always seemed ready to serve. And they were busy. My wife likes her non-fat lattes, and being the dutiful husband, I stopped by often.
Is 2015 the year of getting back to basics?
Years ago I was participating in a business meeting with colleagues from around the country. One of the last items on the agenda after two full days of information sharing was... what are your plans for next year?
Around the room, one at a time, a representative from every business, presented their plans. Most of them had major capital projects in the works. New restaurants, concepts to test, expansion plans and other often grand and innovative initiatives. And in fact, many commented that they couldn't wait to get home and implement some of the new ideas and best practices they had learned over the prior couple of days.
Then there was Carol, a manager from a major well established, successful amusement park in the eastern US. And when asked what her plans were for the following year to grow revenue and profits from the food and beverage operation she was in charge of, she said... Stack 'em High and Watch 'em Fly.