How to Coach an Employee after a Bad Mystery Shop

No one likes to tell someone else they’ve done a poor job or received a bad mystery shop. It’s one of those things most managers never get used to having to do.

Which is why mystery shopping is an excellent, non-biased way to be able to start a discussion with a less than stellar employee. (It’s also a great way to acknowledge those excellent employees too!)

Starting the discussion after a mystery shop has been performed provides you with written observations from a third party. The third party being a potential or actual customer.

The report isn’t your opinion or observations of their co-workers. It is of a real interaction. A great basis for a real discussion on what went right and what did not.

Continue reading “How to Coach an Employee after a Bad Mystery Shop”

Hey! What About Me? Remember to Ask Your Employees What They Need

Remember to Ask Your Employees What they NeedMy nephew is one of three children. He happens to be my sister’s middle child. He has an older and a younger sister. When he was little, he was famous for saying, “Hey! What about me?” if he thought his sisters were getting more attention than he was. I used to love it when he would pipe up and let us all know that he needed a little love and attention too.

This got me thinking. As employers, we spend a lot of time wondering how we are doing in the eyes of our customers. We survey, conduct focus groups, mystery shop, and sometimes we even pick up the phone and call our customers to get their feedback. The best organizations in any industry know that to meet customers’ needs, you need to know what these needs are by asking them!

But what about our employees? You might want to do the same for them.  Continue reading “Hey! What About Me? Remember to Ask Your Employees What They Need”

A Thank You May Be All It Takes

employee partyA good friend of mine works in retail. She has a high ranking position at a regional mall.

I know that I will lose touch with my friend the deeper we go into the holiday season.

How do I know this?

It happens every year. Cutting herself off from friends and social events is her way of preserving her energy so she can get through “the most wonderful time of the year”.

I bet there are people on your staff who do the same thing, all in the name of self-preservation. Maybe you do it too. This time of year can be brutal on those who are manning the front lines in our stores and offices.

When the dust settles in the New Year, let me suggest that you take the time to thank your employees – those who worked so hard to deliver the kind of service your organization is noted for.

Have a survivor party, design fun tee shirts to commemorate having made it through the storm, or just gather everyone together to say thank you for a job well done and share “war stories” of the season over coffee and bagels one morning.

You’ll be surprised how far a simple “thank you” will go to win the respect and admiration of your team.

We all want to know that the effort we made…mattered.


What kinds of things do you do for your staff to thank them for putting forth their best efforts during the holiday season?  Please comment below to let us know your thoughts.

70% of Your Employees Are Unhappy

70% of Employess are UnhappyThe Gallup organization, in their 2013 “State of the American Workplace” report, have come out with a new survey that says 70% of employees hate their jobs or are disengaged and are not motivated by incentives.

Of this 70% (could ANY of these be on your front line?), 20% are classified as “actively disengaged” meaning that they are actively looking for jobs and generally making life miserable for those around them. Of the remaining 50%, the survey tells us that these employees are not inspired by their managers. This statistic makes me sad since I know what kind of an impact this can have on customer service and your profitability.

But I wonder if it has to be this way. Can we encourage better relationships with our subordinates through coaching? Isn’t it our job as managers to inspire and motivate, encourage growth, and establish the culture?
In organizations that have a stable and motivated work force, I know that internal and external coaching plays a huge part.

In these organizations, coaching creates better lines of communication.
In these organizations, coaching allows the manager to spend quality time with those under their supervision.
In these organizations, coaching allows talent to be recognized and growth to occur.
Better get coaching!


Have you ever felt hatred for a job? Why?  Please tell us by commenting below.

I’m Wild About You! Can’t you Tell?

Successful marriages fascinate me and I think there are some parallels to be drawn between successful marriages on the personal side of life and successful coaching relationships on the business side of life. Let’s face it, it’s hard work to maintain any kind of satisfying relationship in this day and age. There are so many forces working against us. One thing I know for sure is that those involved in successful relationships work really hard at it. They take very little for granted.

When I think of some of the most successful marriages out there, I see three common denominators that contribute to the success and longevity of the relationship. I think these same factors need to be present when we are acting as coaches for our employees.successful working relationship

  • In successful relationships, whether they are marriages or coaching relationships, there needs to be mutual respect. Those involved need to recognize that our differences are what make us special. Respect lays the groundwork for communication, growth, and trust in relationships.
  • Those involved in successful relationships also recognize that it’s important to go through the work of being in the relationship –side by side. Those you mentor need to know that you have their best interest at heart. As a coach, you need to know that your advice and counsel will be taken seriously. A sense of partnership is critical.
  • Finally, relationships become successful because the parties work to spend time together. What this means in a coaching situation is that both parties hold their coaching obligations sacred, never allowing other appointments to get in the way of spending the time together intended to help all involved to succeed and grow.

If you enjoyed this coaching tip, please share.
We always read and appreciate your thoughtful comments!

How much time are you spending with those you coach? What are the biggest stumbling blocks to making sure you meet on a regular basis?