One of the most important things you can do as a manager is monitor how your employees work with your customers.
Your employees are the face of your business. They’re what can make or break a customer experience. If they’re not performing, your business could be suffering.
Before You Start Tracking
Before you track anything, make sure your employees know what is expected. Outline the exact things you want your employees to do. Although most might seem intuitive, such as showing up to work on time, it’s important to specify what you need from your team. Without doing this, your employees might make assumptions about their job that are simply not true.
Here are three ways to track employee performance.
1. Observe Your Employees in Action
Nothing is better than seeing your employees handle the day-to-day situations. This is the best way to determine how they react to certain customers and scenarios.
While you’re observing, make sure to take notes. If you want to be discreet, you can use your phone to write notes in Evernote. Or, take mental notes while you’re in front of your employee, then jot them down as soon as you have a moment. Don’t wait too long. You don’t want to forget the good and bad you saw that day.
2. Hold Regular One-on-One Meetings
Your employees themselves are a wealth of information. These are the people who see every interaction their teammates have with customers.
Hold regular one-on-one meetings to ask your employees about their job. First, check in with them to make sure everything is going well. You might uncover some hidden struggles you didn’t know they had.
Then, ask for feedback about their teammates. You don’t have to name people specifically. Your employees will do that if there is a big concern. Again, take notes.
3. Get Customer Feedback
Ultimately, your customer’s perception of your employee is what matters. These are the people who will decide whether or not to return to your store based on their experience with your team.
Conducting regular surveys of your customers is ideal but it’s not always feasible. Another way to listen to their feedback is to monitor social media. Ask for reviews. Take note when someone sends you a comment. These comments are likely to be very positive or very negative because they take time for the person to write. They’re a gold mine for determining how well your team is performing.
Tracking your team’s performance isn’t a smart thing to do. It’s a necessity. Set the expectations, then monitor your team members up close and from afar. Then, in your regular performance reviews you’ll have more tangible evidence to present as you talk about ways to improve and what a person did exceptionally well.
Author Profile Jon Forknell is the Vice President and General Manager of Atlas Business Solutions, Inc., a software marketing company specializing in employee scheduling software, including ScheduleBase employee scheduling software, and other business software solutions. In the past, Jon has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as a SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Atlas Business Solutions was named as one of Software Magazine’s Top 500 Software Companies in 2004 through 2007 and again in 2010, 2013 and 2014.