Honesty vs Lying.
By John Tschohl
Friday, 7th April 2006
It is amazing how often employees lie. What is so wrong with telling the truth? I consistently see employees distorting the truth, lying and being just plain dishonest.

Keeping your promises and being honest is critical to every service leader. When employees are encouraged to lie or allowed to lie it ruins your brand and reputation.

I booked a flight last week on Continental Airlines from Minneapolis to El Salvador and back. The reservation employee said the ticket was the last one available on theflight back from El Salvador, so the price was really high, and if I did not book that moment there would be no more seats. Guess what. The flight was 2/3 empty on the return flight. On the flights to El Salvador the plane was 1/3 empty.

On almost a daily basis I see employees lie to avoid problems or to just get rid of the customer. The customer usually finds out the truth and becomes unhappier. Just bite the bullet and be honest. Tell the truth. Admit mistakes. Solve problems quickly. Your word is your bond. Once this is broken it is very hard to recover your reputation.

Most employees have never been trained on customer service or the core values we teach with Feelings. I still do not understand why firms spend millions on marketing but seem reluctant to spend money training their staff on superior service. The most important person in each organization is not the CEO. It is the front line employee. Least trained, least appreciated and least paid.

Teach your employees to be honest. Be honest yourself. Customers can handle bad news and problems. Just be honest. It will help build a more powerful brand with integrity.

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