Dan Quinn, Head of Customer Service Quinn Essential got his first job in high school, where he worked 40 hours a week at the local drug store dipping ice cream cones for 5 cents each. During this job, Dan found out that when people wait in line to buy an ice cream cone…they smile when you give it to them. These findings changed Dan’s life. After several years, Dan worked his way up the ladder to Store Manager. Then he was given the opportunity to be the Western Region Customer Service Manager of Sav-On/Osco Drugs, followed by the opportunity to fill that role for the entire company for 6 years. Currently, he is Chief Operating Officer at Water Saver Solutions. Water saver solutions help people manage water use better by measuring how the systems are performing now and how they can be improved.
We invited Dan Quinn from Quinn Esssentials Customer Service to our January 2023 dinner meeting. Dan Quinn shared his 35+yearsof experience with us and gave insight into customer service, project management, and communication. In case you missed the January dinner, here’s a recap.
Speaker Dan started the meeting with a message thanking everyone who had contributed to organizing the January Dinner meeting; then he asked the audience question about how they ensure that the project is successful. When running a project, a lot of effort goes into planning the execution and implementation. For the project to be successful, everyone involved in the project must do their job. People are the most important resource to consider for a successful project.
As per Dan, by hiring the right people, training them right, and, most importantly, treating them well, we create a dynamic and unbeatable team where each member contributes fully to making the company number one in its field. Dan used a few examples to explain that every customer is unique, and we must try to understand each customer and their needs. Companies must realize that successful project employers should prioritize customer needs and requirements. Some customers are straightforward with their requirements; others are complex. Dan also talked about the most significant problems while handling big projects, such as failing to understand customer requirements and the communication gap between management and the team. According to Dan, understanding the human side of the customer is a challenge. Accepting this challenge and making an effort to understand the customer is essential for good customer service.
Dan suggests that companies need to work on hiring the right people for the project. If the team/manager involved in the project is part of the interview process, the chances of the right candidate increases. By involving team members in the hiring process, existing team members are motivated to help the new employee with the project. You can also ask relevant questions about your skills and abilities to complete your project. Dan suggested not to rely on automation. Make the onboarding process welcoming and interactive. Encourage teammates to help new hires understand the work culture and customers.
Good communication is essential for a successful project.
For a project to be successful, everyone from management to employees must know where and what to communicate. Good communication not only helps foster team building but also helps increase engagement and improvisation productivity at work. Leadership plays a significant role in achieving good customer relationships. A good leader becomes someone who treats employees like customers. We understand that treating our employees is just as important as meeting the needs of our customers. Treat employees like customers who understand their needs, and recognize, reward, and value their work.
Recognizing their importance to the project and treating them like family within the organization helps create a great work culture. Employees are motivated to contribute to the success of the project.
A leader can be a senior executive, decision-maker, manager, or supervisor leading a team. They are responsible for having a positive attitude and integrity and encouraging employees to work towards the company’s vision and mission. Company leaders must lead by example and encourage employees to understand customer needs and resolve conflicts through effective communication.
I have been lucky to have learned a valuable lesson about great customer service from Dan. We always take for granted people who work hard to get their projects done. Dan’s final message about treating employees like customers was very accurate. The employees in your organization are responsible for the project’s success. I look forward to sharing another evening with everyone on topics related to project management. Register now for the next PMI-OC dinner meeting.