Like many of you I suspect, I have become more conscious of risk. At the outset of the COVID crisis, the prospect of having to go almost anywhere made me feel uncomfortable. This was especially true of the poor innocent supermarket. Perhaps I will have similar misgivings about offices, albeit to a lesser extent, when or if they ever again become a significant feature of how we do business.
Thinking about supermarkets, I find myself perplexed by some of the behavioural disparities I observe between them. On the face of it, each one is encouraging customers to think about and observe distancing rules. They have made other changes to their operating models, such as cleaning baskets and trolleys whilst attempting to discourage shoppers from loitering in aisles. But such changes are being implemented differently across the industry, and in some cases from store to store within the same organisation.
What causes this to happen? After all, these rules and business model changes are simple, easy to understand and therefore it should be possible to have them implemented uniformly everywhere.
Could it be a lack of employee buy-in to the message the organisation is asking them to communicate to customers? Consequently, sometimes the message an organisation wishes to communicate is received clearly by customers and sometimes it is not. An unclear, or worse still, a muddled message is rarely a recipe for business success.
But that could never happen to your business right? Considerable time and resource has been devoted to producing your organisational vision, mission statement and making sure employees understand and buy into values and culture.
Could it be that customers experience your organisation somewhat differently?