By Roxanne Emmerich
Profit hides a lot of mistakes. But now that the economy has put pressure on all of us to find what works and chuck what doesn’t, it’s time to give credit to the greatest single predictor of profits and growth – your critical drivers.
And what’s the number-one critical driver? Mood – frame of mind – the way a particular group of people think and feel about your bank at any one time. Mood is money, and if you have a culture where people don’t want to come to work on Mondays and count the days until Friday, you are headed for a life lesson that is costly beyond measure.
Boost Your Critical Drivers
Gallup research shows businesses with disengaged employees experience $3,400 in lost productivity for every $10,000 of payroll, and employee engagement is the leading indicator of corporate health. A study of 19 insurance companies revealed that in 75 percent of cases, climate alone accurately sorted companies into high versus low profits and growth. Out of the hundreds of variables that impact insurance companies, to have one variable so closely predictive of actual results is overwhelming evidence that mood matters.
First Volunteer Bank, now known as “The Bank with Personality,” had tried everything – sales training, restructuring, strategic planning, you name it – but couldn’t get beyond average. Then, after a one-day “Thank God It’s Monday” presentation, they experienced 35 percent annualized growth in a single month – more organic growth than in the previous 10 years combined.
Will your workplace mood spill out onto the streets and impact your customers and get them to come back and bring others? Yes!
For every 1 percent improvement in service climate, there is a 2 percent increase in revenue. If employees are engaged, customers not only reward you with more business – they come back and bring their friends! When your team members are doing backflips to delight customers and are committed to the success of your customers and clients, that’s a business that works.
Unfortunately, it works both ways. Bad employee moods and rudeness are also contagious. Cardiac care units where nurses’ moods were defined as “depressed” had a patient death rate four times that of comparable units. Yikes. A study of 32 retail stores showed that positive salespeople outsell their grumpy workmates.
Mood matters to customers. Mood either causes customers to buy more or to leave and never come back – and one bad encounter can echo through that lost customer and everyone they talk to for decades.
Rock YOUR World
Are you having any fun? I had an uncle who would count the number of days until retirement. “Only 3,297 more to go,” he would say. Great guy, but lousy attitude. He needed to move on or realize that he was choosing his attitude. Are you like my uncle?
Let’s face it – we want our lives to count for something. We want our work to matter. When we went to work the first day, our shoes were shined and we knew we wanted to be a huge contributor.
Then, as life happened, we disengaged ourselves. Maybe we found out the humans we worked with weren’t perfect. Go figure. Or maybe we thought somebody did something unfair and we got our nose out of joint. Whatever the cause, instead of accepting people and coaching them, or requesting fairness in an adult way, or learning why perhaps the situation was fair after all, we disengaged ourselves. We are living in a world that is filled with spiritual bankruptcy. Empty activities fill our days. More than ever, we need our lives to matter, and our work fills so much of our lives that we can’t afford emotionally for that work to not fulfill us.
Khalil Gibran said it best: “Work is love made visible.” We need to make work matter – for our own sanity and fulfillment and for the success and fulfillment of those around us. The time for change is now, and the person to make the change is you. Recessions are the time to pull ahead while others are blindsided and confused. Decide that you will be the one to pull ahead. This is your time. ■