How do you motivate entry-level employees to give excellent customer service? Carolee Pierce, general manager of Facilities Management and Consulting (FMC), a Chicago-based provider of turnkey mailroom and copy-center services with revenues of nearly $750,000, offers employees a clear career path.

To produce skilled, customer-centered, promotable workers, FMC does the following:

  • Broadcast upward mobility. FMC lets employees know they'll be moving up the ladder.
  • Extensive initial training. Workers learn every detail of a mail clerk's job, including how to address a letter properly.
  • Switchboard time. The switchboard teaches employees how to interact well with customers. New hires practice vocal tones and making good first impressions.
  • Audiotapes and videotapes. Videos by the U.S. Postal Service cover subjects ranging from pleasing customers to mailroom organization.
  • Users' guide. New employees receive a simple description of what customers can expect from FMC's mail services.
  • Equipment training. To gain experience on different types of equipment, entry-level employees rotate among two or three customer sites during their first month.
  • Constant coaching. Managers prepare mail clerks for the next level by improving computer and communications skills.

Copyright 1997 G+J USA Publishing