Customer experience at Trafford Housing Trust

Several of the Laughology team have begun an exciting new ‘Customer First’ project with Trafford Housing Trust (THT).

Initially, we captured the thoughts of customers and staff during focus group discussions. This gave us important insights into the customer’s journey and experience, as well as an understanding of the many different roles, successes and challenges that people experience within THT.

During November and December, we have delivered launch sessions to everyone in the organisation. From these half-day sessions, it has become clear that the staff at THT are an amazing group of people who genuinely care about their customers. However, in changing times we know that organisations can’t stand still and keep doing what they’ve always done.

To be successful, they must strive for continuous improvement; to be even better. Whether the staff at THT come face to face with customers or not, everyone has a part to play in ensuring a great customer experience. This became apparent during the launch sessions, with people from a wide range of departments working together to generate ideas for improvement.

Being Laughology, there have also been plenty of giggles along the way. In particular, during our unconscious bias activity – where groups are asked to tell the presenters what they think about them, having only met them for a few minutes.

Did you know that Stephanie Davies looks like she’s married to a rich vicar? Sarah Creegan is likely to take her four children and Labrador to the local café to eat spinach and kale egg-white omelettes. And Kerry Leigh appears to ride a motorbike (or zebra) and live either in a wigwam or on a barge with her daughter Rosie and her husband Jim! We are now busily planning the next three modules, to be delivered in the coming months.

We know that, from these, THT staff will really move forward with their customer-first thinking and, who knows, their initial perceptions of the Laughologists themselves could either be confirmed or challenged as we go along.

Top tips for engaging your teams in customer experience

  • SHARE real customer stories of when things went well / didn’t go well. Bringing the customer experience to life really helps people understand the value and impact of what they do.
  • THANK teams and individuals when they do things that help create a great customer experience. It’s important that thank-yous are authentic and personalised. For example, thanking someone who doesn't drink but has a sweet tooth with coffee and cake shows them you have genuinely thought about them.
  • Create the opportunity for people from different departments to spend some time together to UNDERSTAND what goes on in other parts of the business. This helps reduce an ‘us and them’ mentality and lessens frustrations.
  • ASK employees what they think could be done better and how, and LISTEN. Capture these ideas on post-its, walls, online, etc.
  • SHOW when any of these ideas have been implemented, so that people know they are an important part of the organisation, no matter what their role.

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