Saturday, November 20, 2010

We or they ?

Visited a dept store today. The service at the counter was good (which was by the brand's team i.e not the store staff). There were 3 cash counters. Only 1 was manned. Resulting in avoidable waiting time for customers. Asked the cashier why don't they operate at least one more counter to service customers. The reply "There is a shortage of staff. They are not hiring enough people". One would have expected to hear "Sorry , we have a shortage of staff".

When a person refers to their company as "they" :

1. Maybe the company has not been able to create an environment where the person feels valued

2. If "they" are the problem then it is less likely that the person will take initiative/responsibility to address the customer's problem.

The "we/ they" problem could be specific to a location or a company wide problem. At whatever scale it exists it is detrimental to all involved - the customer , the employee and the company.

Listen to your team. What pronouns do you hear ?


Balu said...

I am planning to open a retail outlet, thinking of a safe place. Is there a place where you don’t visit?
Anyway the psychology in pronouns was nice observation.

Savitha Rao said...

Ha ha Balu ! Your store I will definitely visit.

Btw - this is not limited to retail outlets. It's equally applicable to companies.

Savitha Rao said...

The response from the store has been commendable.

Shared the post with the manager of another store(of the same chain).He apologized for the experience and shared the feedback with the manager of the store mentioned in the post.He too called to apologize and update steps taken to remedy the waiting time at the store.