Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Associations Shouldn't Be Like Verizon or the DMV

Yesterday I went to my local Verizon store to get my new cell phone. I compare the experience to the DMV. I walk in and there are kiosks (that I walk right by). Someone stops me and asks how they can help. I tell him I need to buy a new phone on a corporate account. He says great and starts typing on a kiosk. He asks me my name, then says the next sales person will be with me. I see my name go up on the nice LCD TV under sales. There are also queues for Technical Support and Customer Service. There are also employees standing around doing nothing.

This is why it reminds me of the DMV. You get in a queue based on what you need to do. It takes forever, yet there doesn't seem to be a reason why, because there are plenty of workers not doing anything.

I really hope your association isn't like this with member services. Cross training is very important. You need to have your specialists, but you need people who can take care of your members. Most people like to be cross trained. It broadens their skill sets while reducing monotony. It also shows them that you are interested in developing them as an employee. Plus, you don't get into the situation where people see your employees standing around while members stand in line (or wait on hold).

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