Developing the Ownership Quotient
- Jul 17, 2013
- By Business Consultants, inc.
- 0 Comments
Despite the economic pressures of recent years, companies like eBay, Southwest Airlines, Harrah’s Entertainment, ING Direct, Build-a-Bear Workshop® and Wegmans Food Market have maintained financial success. Although the goods and services they provide are rarely exclusive and can often be found elsewhere for a lower price, these businesses remain robust because of the relationships that they maintain with their customers and employees: a concept known as Ownership Quotient.
What is Ownership Quotient?
A company’s Ownership Quotient consists of two different but synergistic components: Customer OQ and Employee OQ.
Customer OQ refers to customers who feel such a strong sense of brand loyalty that they are inspired to tell others about a company’s products or services. By sharing their positive experiences, they bring in new customers, and because of their tendency toward active engagement, they can provide a company with valuable feedback and ideas for improvement.
Employee OQ refers to employees whose level of job satisfaction is so high that not only do they feel a sense of responsibility to the company, but they are emotionally invested in its success. Their enthusiasm for their work is contagious, inspiring customers to feel a similar sense of loyalty and satisfaction by fostering a sense of community and inclusion.
Brainstorming sessions, which allow both customers and employees to make their voices heard and to receive positive feedback from management. When properly executed, this technique can be a rewarding experience for every party involved.
These symbiotic forms of OQ create a cycle of success. Caring employees give customers and clients a firm sense that they are the highest priority, which generates a high OQ among the customer base, and in turn, employees feel a high OQ when they see that their hard work has a tangible impact on your company’s success.
Maintaining a high OQ among employees requires a deeper commitment than incentive programs or casually engaging the workforce in small decisions. It can only be accomplished when employees have a real voice in the company and know that their thoughts, ideas and opinions are valued by higher management. Employees develop a high OQ when they see that their hard work has a positive and substantial impact upon the company that they care about.
Like employees, customers need to feel that they are actively contributing to a company’s success in a way that goes beyond simple patronage. When customers know that their feelings and ideas can make a difference within the company, they happily bring in new clients and provide free marketing every time they tell someone about their positive experiences. They can also provide valuable feedback: some of the best ideas come from customers who feel so bound to a specific brand that they take personal satisfaction in its continued success.
How Can You Create a High OQ Environment?
To best cultivate a high OQ, both employees and customers must feel that they are a contributing force behind the company. A simple way to encourage this feeling while utilizing the resources created by a high OQ is to organize “structured” brainstorming sessions, which allow both customers and employees to make their voices heard and to receive positive feedback from management. When properly executed, this technique can be a rewarding experience for every party involved.Tweet