Great article in the latest edition of Cleaner Magazine entitled, “Happy Employees. Big Dividends” (http://bit.ly/nmG6Ti) which shows the value of a company investing in the future of its employees.
This company, and its management team, “get it!”
Lovett Services is a 14 year-old plumbing company, with 50 employees, in Portland, Oregon.
They believe a well-trained team can make the difference between business success and failure. As such, they’ve built a loyal workforce by helping their employees become happier and more well-rounded.
Everyone in the company attends Lovett University which covers everything from customer service, ladder safety and investing 101.
Lovett’s goal is to create a culture of continuous self-improvement and to educate employees on what work culture means and how it benefits everyone.
All employees take part in a mentor-style orientation that introduces them to the Lovett culture. Lovett looks for talented people who bring substantial skills to the table but then shows them that they don’t just work for Lovett, they are Lovett.
To date, instructors have been in-house using the talent and expertise of employees. However, Lovett is entertaining vendors that may play a role in Lovett University’s course curriculum moving forward.
Lovett University offers one to four-hours classes before and after the regular workday for employees’ convenience. One of the first classes everyone takes is Customer Service 101 in which employees learn how powerful each employee is in creating a positive perception with customers.
Next is Finance 101 where all employees learn how profit and loss work. In all there are currently 16 courses available.
Helping employees on a personal level creates a positive influence that carries over to work. People care about each other, and the company, and want to give back.
Customers notice the difference in Lovett employees commenting on the level of passion they have about their jobs and the outstanding customer service. Happy customers have led to a 90% repeat business and referral rate and nearly 100% staff retention.
In addition, Lovett gets letters from employee spouses thanking them for what they did to change their partners’ attitude about work and life.
Lovett realizes that price is not the most important variable any longer. It’s about building relationships and showing commitment to customer service.
Tony Hsieh meet Dale Lovett. You might want to add Portland, Oregon to your next “delivering happiness” tour.
What can you learn from what Lovett is doing for its 50 employees to improve your business?
Can anyone in Portland share your experiences with Lovett?