For cutting-edge consultants, the latest buzzwords they share with clients are to provide a "total ownership experience" for customers. That means create a complete experience that combines great service, well-designed products or services that function well, and a compelling story that you plant in buyers' minds to reinforce how you add value.
You'll hear more about the total ownership experience in the future. For now, get ahead of the curve by applying this idea to how you manage people.
Begin by thinking about the notion of service as it relates to your staff. How does it feel to work for your organization? When a worker enters the facility, what's the vibe?
Imagine you're an employee arriving at work. Note the lighting in the lobby, what adorns the walls and how people behave when they pass each other (do colleagues exchange friendly greetings or shuffle along in a daze?).
Activate your senses. Ideally, you want to hear pleasing sounds (such as the enthusiastic hum of voices), not loud drilling (from a repair crew that never seems to finish what it starts!). You want to smell fragrant plants and see employees' baby photos on a bulletin board, or a bar graph updated weekly that charts team progress toward a production goal.
These sights, smells and sounds help conjure a total ownership experience for your workers. When the design and appearance of your environment enhance their mood, they bring more energy and excitement to their jobs.
Finally, what story do employees tell about their employer? You want staffers to feel proud working for your organization. If they're at a party and someone asks what they do for work, you hope they will speak with fondness about their role.
Simple, powerful stories resonate with employees. Make sure they know how your company almost went bankrupt years ago but has a new, more profitable (and socially responsible) mission today, or how your organization fills a gaping hole in the marketplace making customers' lives easier. You want your employees to tell themselves an uplifting story about why they work there.