Do you do business in Westport or Weston?
Offending customers or prospects never makes good business sense. Yet in our community, unthinking or ill-trained front-line employees can easily kill a high-value transaction or drive away a prospect with high lifetime value. Welcoming all paying customers makes good economic sense. It’s the right thing to do, too.
If you own or manage the business, your staff needs to hear that from you – regularly. Hiring staff with diverse backgrounds and then acknowledging and leveraging their differences can lead to business opportunities: new customers, new markets, new products and services. Being “color-blind” doesn’t cut it in business any more. Competitive advantage comes from building a “culture of inclusion” and taking advantage of differences. Really successful businesses thrive on diversity. Wouldn’t you want that for your business?
Here are some simple steps you can take: articulate a policy for dealing with customers of all backgrounds
- observe how employees interact with customers of different backgrounds
- acknowledge or coach them accordingly
- discuss these issues with other business owners or managers in your area or industry