I work with a digital marketer who recently shared a story of a client who wanted him to work on his reputation marketing. The digital marketer took on the challenge, providing systems and process to make it easy for customers to post a positive review straight to Google, and have the less than positive ones filtered to the company to resolve. However, over time the reviews improved only slightly.

The problem? There is no recipe for rudeness, and the client had a rude staff member, a staff member that was derailing their business and fueling the negative reviews. And worse, the leader wasn’t prepared to do anything to fix the staff member’s attitude. The negative reviews will continue and will continue to erode the value of the business.

In today’s business world, too many people claim that they don’t have time to be nice. Allowing rude staff derails the growth of your business, decreases your profits and builds transactional customers.

Have you ever thought about how much rudeness may be affecting your bottom line? What is the cost to your company when you or the people who represent you lack proper manners? Do you know how many clients are turned off by employees who would rather carry on a conversation with each other than with the person who came to purchase your service or product? Can you count the number of people who hang up and call someone else because the person who answered your phone put them on hold without asking permission? How does the client rate your professionalism when the employee who welcomes him to your office looks as if she is dressed for a day at the beach? Do your employees understand that it is more offensive then friendly to call the client by first name unless asked to do so? Are your employees treating each other with courtesy and respect? Do they honor the invisible walls of each other’s cubicles? Do they work as a team and help each other or do they act like cast members on Survivor?

Make sure that your employees know how to handle clients over the phone and in person, that they understand the importance of being attentive and alert to clients’ needs, that the value other people’s time and that they can deal with difficult people and situations with grace.

No one is born with good manners. People have to be taught, and from time to time, they need to be reminded of what they already know.

Photo by Joshua Rawson-Harris on Unsplash