How Much Will a Bad Attitude Cost Your Company?
A positive attitude engaged in positive action leads to positive results. But what happens when not everyone has a positive attitude? Have you thought of how much a bad attitude can cost your company?
Recently, I went to purchase a Television from a well know retailer. I had an exact budget of $500. As I browsed brands and sizes of televisions, I noticed an open box special on a TV, however it was a little more than my budget, but not by much. I asked the sales associate if I could get it for $500. It never hurts to ask, right? She said, “I don’t have the authority to authorize that discount, but let me ask the store manger.”
She got on the service phone and called the manger. We stood there waiting and then waiting some more. Five minutes go by, then ten and then fifteen. She excuses herself to try and call the manager again. A short five minutes later, I see what appears to be a manager rounding the corner of the electronics aisle. I could tell this manager was not in a good mood because as he walked around up to me and the sales associate, he exuded an attitude of negativity – like we just interrupted his day. This is not the best way to approach a customer who represents revenue. His negativity continues. He did not make any eye contact with me, great me with a hello, smile or seem all that interested in being helpful. He just wanted to get on with his day as I was not a customer, but a hiccup.
First words out of his mouth were the wrong words, “What seems to be the problem?” The sales associate explained that I had a budget of $500 and the open box was just a few dollars over my budget, but she wanted to get authorized to discount it so I could afford it.
“Without even letting the sales associate finish what she was saying, the manager rudely shook his head back and forth and said with an agitated tone, “No, we can’t give you the discount because it has already been discounted.” Then turns on his toes and begins to march away.
You see, what you permit is what you promote and I don’t tolerate being treated the way that manager treated me. Before he got to the end of the aisle, I called out, “Excuse me, what is your name?”
Very defensively, he turns and points to his name tag, “I am manager Mike.”
I said, “I have money to spend today and the way you just treated me as a customer was inappropriate behavior, especially someone in a leadership role as yourself. The difference between you and I is that I represent revenue for this company and you represent an expense. Treating customers how you just did is how you lose revenue. Would you agree with that manger Mike?”
Manager Mike didn’t really appreciate my valuable leadership training. The bottom line is, I walked into this large retailer to spend hard earned money which translates into revenue and profit for the company. Manager Mike’s bad attitude cost the company the sale. I don’t give money to companies that treat me bad and nor should you. What manager Mike didn’t realize is that as a customer, it doesn’t matter how big of a retail chain you are, I as a single customer hold the power to “FIRE” your entire company at my choosing. I do that when I choose not to buy from you anymore.
Now, whoever trained manager Mike forgot to mention that attitude determines sales, customer care, leadership and success. Or they didn’t put enough emphasis or priority into attitude training that the consequence is lost revenue. This begs the accountability question, who should be held accountable for any employee associate in the workplace that acts in a manner that creates negative circumstances as manager Mike did?
Now to a big retailer like this, you might think it is not a big deal. Well I happen to know for a fact that this company cut out their attitude wellness programs because of budget issues. Was it the best choice for them? Let’s do some math and we will see. In a recent customer service survey, they this international retailer was rated next to last next to tech support. It gets better. To justify why stock prices have dropped to the shareholders, the CEO is quoted as saying “People are just running out money.”
People may be tight on money these days, which means they are getting smarter about how they shop and where. In an effort to generate more income to raise the stock price, this retailer decided it would cater to “gun enthusiast” by selling guns in more of their stores. Are you getting the math yet?
If you were going to do anything to generate revenue for your organization and you are ranked almost dead last in customer service, it shouts, “Get a clue. Bad attitudes are an expense that will cost you profits.”
My $500 lost sale may not have been much to this retailer, but let’s just say you duplicate my experience which I had with them and put that in 5000 of their stores. And then let’s do some math; take one employee associate from every store who treats a customer in a negative way only one day out of the year and it costs the store $500 in lost revenue. How much does that come out to be? $2,500,000 a year. Can you believe that a bad attitude could cost that much? What if we change it up a bit and say 5 bad attitudes cost the store $500 each 5 days a year in 5000 stores. A bad attitude equals: $62,500,000. Wow! That number is insane and is a result of bad attitudes in the workplace. It doesn’t really matter how you calculate the scenario, a bad attitude will cost your company a small fortune and if a big retailer like the one I am highlighting, a good size fortune. Does it make sense to develop and make some sort of attitude wellness program part of training procedures?
Understanding and implementing this philosophy into your company can save you a good chunk of change. When you mix the right attitude into your efforts, skills and knowledge, you work to achieve the right results. The bottom line is this: A positive attitude will do more for you and through you than a negative attitude will. If you are not investing a little time and effort into ensuring that the right attitude is being distributed by employees, you will invest a fortune fixing the mess that a bad attitude creates. It’s not about wearing a slogan on your vest, shirt as much as it is actually living up to that slogan through your attitude and actions. Words don’t mean anything unless you can back them up. It is deception when your uniform says you care, but bad attitude clearly says you don’t. It is the responsibility of leadership to make sure that their people have the right tools and guidance in order to develop, maintain and serve others with a better attitude.
This information is compiled, researched and written by Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy. Sam is a sought after keynote motivational speaker by companies and organizations that want to re-charge attitude’s for positive action to achieve positive results. Sam Glenn’s Speeches and Motivational Books offer strategies that combat stress and negativity in the workplace and ideas that ramp up teamwork, communication and a positive culture where people will thrive. Sam Glenn is a great kick off speaker or closing to any event. Sam Glenn’s Official Website: (www.SamGlenn.com)