July 14, 2017 by Chris

As the youngest and newest addition to the NKD family, I want to explore what Employee Engagement means to me and why I think it’s vital for companies of all sizes to invest in it. As it’s my first post, I thought I would integrate the content with an aviation theme, because it’s my biggest passion in life. I find when you start a new job you always expect the same sort of questions, ‘What exactly do you do!?’ Everyone at NKD tends to answer that question in their own unique way, however, for me the answer is simple. NKD designs, creates and facilitates innovative employee engagement programmes. We’re fuelled by engaging employees and truly turning them into walking, talking brand ambassadors. What’s the result of this, you may ask? The answer is: extraordinary customer experiences.

These experiences are in the foreground of our everyday lives. We could use going on holiday as an example. Airline A may check in your bags fine, get you to your destination on time and provide an efficient service. However, is that anything to shout about? One thing I’ve learnt so far at NKD is that we don’t entertain average. We strive for excellence. If there’s a glass ceiling in the way, we want to smash it – in our opinion, Airline A is failing its customers, employees, and essentially failing itself. Contrast this with Airline B, who check in your bag with a smile, looking you in the eye and addresses you with your name as you check in. I would argue employees who are engaged and love their job really do fuel extraordinary customer experiences – even if they don’t realise they’re doing it! The cabin crew on the flight may go above and beyond what is required to make your journey memorable and the best it can be – this is so important! Why? ‘It’s just a flight!’ you might say. However, it’s not just one flight, is it? The first thing you get asked by anyone when you get off a plane is ‘How was your flight?’ The passenger on Airline A would respond ‘Yeah it was okay’ and the conversation would move on. However, if the same question were asked to the passenger on Airline B, the answer would resemble ‘Yeah it was great actually! The cabin crew were so helpful and friendly, and everyone at Airline B couldn’t do enough to help me!’ The importance of that response cannot be understated from a business point of view. This is because the vital question is then fired back at the passenger: ‘What airline did you fly with?’

Excellent word of mouth is one of the most powerful marketing tools a business has.

What I hope you’ve learnt from my little anecdote is that Airline A doesn’t seem to have the same passionate, customer-obsessed workforce as Airline B. It’s the small touches that always make a difference. Fantastic customer service such as eye contact, smiling and using the customer’s name doesn’t cost any more – yet, it’s making customers fall in love with the brand. ‘But how do you get every employee all over the world to deliver that day in day out?’ some people may argue. The answer to this ponderous question is NKD Learning. We’re nuts about customers! We harness the talent and energy of employees by facilitating sessions that can help people learn, develop and thrive. Learners will explore how their role in the company is of vital importance for the business to succeed.

In the scenario, you could say Airline A doesn’t go above and beyond. They’re not delivering their brand promise, and ultimately that’s not going to produce profitable results. Let’s ask ourselves as human beings: do we like to feel valued, connected and trusted? The answer is an inevitable yes. The phrase ‘The whole is greater than the sum of its parts’ is crucial here because it highlights the need for organisations to be connected; because when we feel connected we feel secure. This strength ultimately means we can realise our potential as human beings. Ultimately, if you invest in developing and engaging your employees, your customers will have better experiences – just look at Airline B’s glowing reviews! As I conclude this blog post, I’ll leave you with an image of my favourite commercial aircraft ever made: Concorde. In my opinion, some of these adjective phrases for Concorde mirror NKD. They include creative innovation, constructive collaboration and superb customer experience. That’s what you can expect from working with us at NKD.