January 6, 2013
The Importance of a Support Staff: Never Underestimate the Support Staff
Last month, I went inside my bank expecting to conduct business with a bank representative only to be told I need to pick up a phone and talk to a video camera. I was expecting a professional representative with a personal touch; however, I received impersonal service with a prison like atmosphere. What would make a business give up a personal touch for less? Today, in any business whether large or small being a Receptionist, Secretary, Administrative Assistant, Bank Teller or any support staff personnel requires one to be professional, polite and courteous. This is the first representation and impression that customers have of the business and the upmost professionalism should be portrayed. It may be via telephone, face-to-face, email, webcam etc. however it comes, the company should be portrayed in a positive light. The support staff plays a very vital role in any business. As we all know, the support staff is the very first contact of a business that can help the discontinuity or the creation of a business. The support staff should always consider one’s self as if they were potential customers obtaining or requiring information from another business. So why would my Fortune 500 bank, which emphasis customer service, would wish to alienate its customers with a prison like atmosphere? I was told it was for safety. However, I do not believe that safety to the extent it causes a negative atmosphere is more important than a personal touch or professionalism.
Support Staff’s Involvement to a Business Should Not Be Underestimated The support staff the majority of the time is the last to be recognized. Developing a good rapport between supervisors and support staff is very much needed to today’s business world. Because of new technology a lot have changed over a period of time, which lightens the load (in some instances) of the support staff. The support staff is always there to assist in any way possible. A successful relationship with the support staff can and in most cases lead to a thriving business. “Above all, be polite and considerate, never sarcastic. A well-pleased “thank you” is appropriate and appreciated. The rewards you will reap from this common courtesy approach will be well worth the effort” (Hamm, 1997, p14). Supervisors/managers should spend more time building a rapport with support staff opposed to playing the role of monitoring employees. Also, making rules and changes just to improve he/she has some form of authority. Some managers often view their support staff as diminutive and fail to see their importance. Gulati along with two of General Electric’s marketing executive’s implemented four fundamental roles; the instigator, the innovator, the integrator and the implementer. (2010, pgs. 1 and 2) “If you’re tied down by your job description, you restrain your impact. It’s self-limiting behavior. It becomes a vicious, self-fulfilling prophecy.” (Nobel, 2010, p.1)
The Importance Support Staff's Involvement Bare on a Business Upon reading the article “Employee involvement in performance improvement: A consideration of tacit knowledge, commitment and trust” A research from six major British companies divulged results from qualitative and quantitative conclusions. The intent was to express the high excellent performance of employees, but yet facing the complications and commitment of improving their performance. “Three particular concepts emerged as pivotal - the individual focus on process improvement for generating new forms of interaction at work, the importance of employee tacit knowledge for contributing to process improvement, and a new form of trust based on mutual interest between employees and management as a crucial intermediary variable contributing to commitment.” Champions of the TQM movement have...