At Ruby® Receptionists, we’re not only committed to providing WOW-worthy service, we’re also dedicated to providing best-in-class support and technology tools to help customers optimize their businesses’ potential.
We’re excited to announce that, in line with these efforts, Senior Vice President of Operations, Stephanie Copeland Weber, has been named Chief Operating Officer, a new position at Ruby. In this new role, Stephanie will oversee all effort and programs that promote employee success and accelerate our ability to grow.
We’re also excited to share that Christina Burns, Vice President of Service (and veteran Ruby), is taking on the role of Vice President of Customer Success.
Both Stephanie and Christina have had such a positive impact at Ruby, and we can’t wait to see what they do next!
The holidays are a time for tradition; a time for nostalgia; and, if you’re last name happens to be Griswold, a time for some potentially groan-worthy movie references.
Ruby Receptionist, Tyler Griswold is certainly familiar with this annual phenomenon. And it seems he’s found a kindred spirit in customer, Jeff Griswold.
When Tyler remarked on their matching last names, he and Jeff began swapping stories of people connecting them to the fictional Griswold family from the National Lampoon Vacation films. To help Jeff get in the holiday spirit (and show his Griswold team pride), Tyler ordered a Clark Griswold desk ornament à la National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It was holiday season, after all!
Tyler, thanks so much for the Clark Griswold desk ornament. I love it.
We are entering that time of year when we Griswolds start to hear all of the Christmas vacation one-liners from people we meet. “Ha… no way… are you related to Rusty?! Is your dad Clark?” As Griswolds we must smile politely and feign laughter, pretending that we haven’t heard that same exact thing for the 6th time this week.
Hope this finds you well and thanks again, Jeff
At least both Tyler and Jeff have a great sense of humor about their predicament! And honestly, there are worse names they could share…
Tyler, thanks for bringing that classic Ruby charm to Jeff! You’ve proven that sometimes sharing a laugh is the perfect remedy for a case of the Griswolds.
In a recent post for the Small Giants Community blog, Ruby® Founder and CEO, Jill Nelson underlines the value of creating a service-driven culture. “Whatever your line of work, a service-driven culture fosters happy customers and employees, and that translates to increased revenue and business growth,” she notes.
If your business is anything like Ruby, establishing a culture of service is table stakes. We take our service-delivery pretty seriously and we couldn’t offer the unparalleled level of service we’re known for without Incent, Inspire, and Empower®, our unique management philosophy.
Meet Rosy, Ruby’s first bilingual team leader
There is perhaps nothing more daunting in your career than to start a brand-new team from scratch. Not only that, but also to pioneer a first-time service offering and lead your team in meeting company-wide service standards in an entirely different language!
Bilingual Receptionist Cultivator, Rosy Rocha is the intrepid Ruby responsible for creating and maintaining Ruby’s Spanish service delivery. And she’s relied heavily on Incent, Inspire, and Empower to get her there!
“As a manager of a team and Ruby’s bilingual service, the IIE philosophy gives me the opportunity to genuinely practice situational leadership. It helps me know each team member a little better and supports me in keeping them motivated and engaged!”
Incentives in Action
At Ruby, we incent around the things that matter (i.e. the things that help us deliver on our mission and keep us living our core values). How? This question is really all about where we place our time and resources. So, on the most basic level, we are committed to compensating our staff well by offering competitive wages and top benefits.
We also recognize our employees and their accomplishments at every opportunity. And we make sure that these recognitions are directly linked to our mission, vision, and values. A great example of this recognition is Ruby’s Five-at-Five Sabbatical Program, which employees become eligible for after five years of service.
A sentiment to our newest core value, Grow, the program helps Rubys realize a dream they may not otherwise have the chance to realize. Given five weeks and a little seed money, our employees have lived some pretty incredible dreams.
These things are obviously company-wide, so how do you find ways to incent employees at the manger level? Give your leaders the tools to get creative!
Rosy recently found a great way to reach an employee who was struggling with their timeliness. “Using my ‘incent’ tool I promised this receptionist hand-delivered coffee for every two weeks they went without a timeliness incident. This is such a small treat, maybe $4-$5 every two weeks, but it really helps having something to look forward to.”
Bring it home: Think about your business. How do you provide company-wide incentives to keep your employees engaged with your mission? Challenge your leaders to find personal ways to incent their team members!
Inspiring by Example
Hearing about the success of others, or seeing it in action firsthand, keeps employees motivated to strive for their own success. Ruby’s dedicated compliment email inbox, werock, is inspiration central! Every compliment a Ruby receives is recorded and sent in an email to the entire company. These emails are an inspirational reminder of the direct impact our mission of creating personal connections has on the world.
But sometimes, seeing someone else succeed in the moment can bring the biggest inspirational, “ah-ha” moments. Rosy agrees. “When I find that I have a receptionist struggling with guiding callers confidently, I have them observe another person on the team who had that same challenge and is now thriving in their role. This also keeps that model receptionist inspired to be an example of what their newer teammates can strive for.”
Bring it home: Inspiration comes in many forms. Make sure to find the right storytelling or success-sharing avenues for your business and encourage your leaders to inspire by example!
Providing the Tools to Achieve
When you empower your employees to not only have big ideas but provide them with the tools to execute on them, they feel more engaged and you may just find the answer to a question you didn’t even know you had!
Ruby provides each employee with a bank of culture funds each year to make Ruby a better place and create community. The money is theirs and they can use it all at once, piece it out, or join others and contribute it to a bigger project. Employees have used these funds to contribute to Ruby’s culture with fitness equipment, kitchen gadgets, and a host of one-of-a-kind events.
Rosy recently faced a unique challenge to find resources for employees who wanted to improve their Spanish. To help with this challenge, she called on one of her employees with an extensive background as a Spanish interpreter. “I know that using this experience makes her proud and fosters her happiness at work. I empowered this employee to brainstorm a solution to help those wanting to improve their bilingual skills. She now is the proud leader of Ruby’s Spanish Club. Knowing that she is empowered at Ruby to host her meetings in our office, to set her own schedule and style; she’s been able to foster her vision of the Ruby Spanish Club. And innovated a solution to one of my biggest struggles!”
Bring it home: What tools can you provide your employees to help them execute on their big ideas? Faced with a particularly sticky challenge? Think of ways you can involve your employees in the brainstorming process!
This post appears as part of our Incent, Inspire, and Empower series, where we share personal stories from Ruby’s leaders. You can catch last month’s post, Managing Mangers, here.
In the harried pace to stay ahead in product development, how thorough is your research phase? Are you confident you’re onto the next big thing that your customers actually want or need? Seth Godin says, “Don’t find customers for your product. Find products for your customers.”
They want it faster, shinier, first, or free – or do they?
Chasing market share in product development often becomes a competitive quest for being faster, being first, having a whiz-bang feature, or coming in cheaper. Yet, only an evidence-based understanding of your customer can temper the confirmation bias of product development, says a Medium article, explaining the maxim ‘We only make products for ourselves.’ “This is one of the reasons why so many products fail to resonate. They’re created with a hypothetical customer or with no customer at all.”
Key takeaway: Engage your customers in product development. Are there caveats to consider? You betcha!
Henry Ford said it best when he claimed, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”
Gaining feedback directly from customers about their needs and wants is essential. However, the thinkers and dreamers in UX, product development and marketing are the ones charged with casting a vision of what could be, of finding meaningful ways to be different, and discovering new ways to delight customers.
What delights today may come to be expected tomorrow. When first introduced, cup holders in cars may have been a “wow” feature.. Are you impressed by them now or do you expect them as standard?
Key takeaway: Anticipate and exceed customer expectations, constantly.
Stay curious about your customers
Whether it’s faster horses, the next great cup holder, or the proverbial sliced bread, it’s necessary to go beyond product research in the development of products and services. Stay curious. Explore customer behavior! What makes them tick? (Hint: Look beyond customer demographics.)
We are humans, fueled by feelings, motivated by a myriad of influences from physical (hunger, pain) to emotional (nostalgia, peer pressure). Engineering a product without taking into account the world your customers live and work in to help you understand how and why your customers engage with your company is short-sighted.
Clay Shirky wrote in his book, Cognitive Surplus, about a team of researchers hired by McDonald’s. The subject? They wanted to improve sales of their milkshakes:
“Should the shakes be thicker? Sweeter? Colder? Almost all of the researchers focused on the product. But one of them, Gerald Berstell, chose to ignore the shakes themselves and study the customers instead. He sat in a McDonald’s for eighteen hours one day, observing who bought milkshakes and at what time. One surprising discovery was that many milkshakes were purchased early in the day. Berstell also garnered three other behavioral clues from the morning milkshake crowd: the buyers were always alone, they rarely bought anything besides a shake, and they never consumed the shakes in the store.
The key to understanding what was going on was to stop viewing the product in isolation and to give up traditional notions of the morning meal. Berstell instead focused on a single, simple question: “What job is a customer hiring that milkshake to do at eight A.M.?”
Key takeaway: Ask new questions. Embrace new insights.
Explore the role of customer behavior and feedback in your product development. Look beyond the features and attributes of your market offering and consider ‘what job are your customers hiring that product/service to do?’ What you learn may seem unusual or even run contrary to what you thought you knew about your products and your customers. Don’t deny what’s different. The unusual can be a clue to uncover your next competitive advantage and the key to unlocking greater customer delight!
We’re excited to share we will be exhibiting at the 2018 Annual Heckerling Institute on Estate Planning Conference—Jan. 22-26, 2018!
Throughout this five-day conference Ruby will showcase how our proprietary technology, feature-rich mobile app, and friendly receptionists work in tandem to deliver exceptional customer service.
Ruby answers all calls live in English or Spanish, helping limit phone call interruptions so advisors and attorneys are free to focus on client work instead of busy work. Stop by our booth to discover how Ruby can help manage your calls, prioritize client communications, and take some of that busy work off your plate!
New data from financial information company Sageworks shows seven of the top 10 industries with the highest sales growth are related to construction. However, Sageworks also reports that the construction sector has below average profitability relative to other small businesses. For construction business owners, the opportunity for financial success is ample. So why are so many failing to attain it?
Customer service may be playing a big part. Walker Info anticipates by 2020 customer service will overtake price and product as the key differentiator for businesses. And for growing businesses, the phone is a critical customer touchpoint: 80% of callers are likely to become repeat customers after a positive phone experience, 74% are likely to choose another vendor after just one bad experience.*
As a contractor, good customer service sets you apart from the competition—but being available whenever a customer calls is incredibly challenging. A remote receptionist service can help you deliver exceptional service to every caller, while increasing your productivity and profitability. Here’s how:
Make great first impressions. According to Consumer Reports, 72% of callers who reach an automated answer will hang up without leaving a message—and potentially call a competitor. You don’t want miss out on a job because you’re too busy to get to the phone. A remote receptionist service provides the coverage you need when you need it, so potential customers don’t fall through the cracks. No more risk of losing customers to voicemail—every caller is greeted by a live, cheerful person prepared to follow your custom instructions. And if you’re looking to hire subcontractors, remote reception is a solid asset. Receptionists will answer live when candidates call and gather or relay any info you need, so you can make an informed follow-up.
Keep current customers happy. When you’re on the go all day, you’re not always able (or in the mood) to answer the phone in your warmest customer service voice. But that’s exactly what a remote receptionist can do, no matter if you’re at a job site or with a customer. A remote receptionist service gives you a team of talented people dedicated to being friendly, professional, and above all, helpful—so callers are happy, and you look good.
Get more done, earn more money. Little interruptions can add up to a lot of lost (billable) hours. A remote receptionist connects only the calls you want and happily fields the rest, so you can focus your attention where it matters most. Some of the best services allow you to change your call-handling instructions on the fly, so wherever the day takes you, your remote receptionist team is always informed and equipped to handle calls to your exact specifications. With the freedom to focus, you’re able to accomplish more each day. And many services can be turned on and off easily, so you only pay for what you need.
Gain peace of mind. You’ve worked hard to build your business, and with a remote receptionist, you can actually enjoy the freedom of owning a business. Whether you’re on the road, at a job site, or taking a well-deserved break, you’ll rest assured knowing every call is handled by a customer experience expert. Best of all, a remote receptionist service provides that reassurance at a fraction of the cost of hiring an in-house employee.
Your customers depend on you for quality work, but they’re looking for quality customer service, too. A remote receptionist service can empower you to run your company more efficiently, and create great experiences for your new and current customers—helping you rise above the competition and build word-of-mouth buzz that drives referrals.
At Ruby, we’re always looking for ways to help streamline life for small business owners. Entrepreneurs are busy people after all, so anything we can do to save you time, effort, or money is a winner. The Choose Your Caller ID feature in the Ruby mobile app does just that by letting you pick which caller ID to show when making calls from your cell phone.
So, how does this help? The ability to show your company’s caller ID on cell calls makes it possible to eliminate your traditional phone bill, helping you cut monthly costs. No need to be tied to in-office phone equipment or a second business-only cell phone. All you need is your personal device and the Ruby app!
If you’re not ready to cut the cord just yet, this feature can still make your life easier. For small business owners, there is often little to no divide between work and personal life. With the Choose Your Caller ID feature, you get to maintain a little separation in keeping your personal number private and driving call traffic to your company’s business line instead of your cell. Even when you’re out and about, calling from the app lets you have that business presence from wherever you are.
If you’ve ever made a WiFi call, you’re probably familiar with the spotty connections and dropped interactions that are associated with them. We built the Choose Your Caller ID feature to send calls over the traditional cell carrier network, not WiFi, which translates to the best possible connection and sound quality.
Save the extra phone bill, keep your cell number private, and make business calls from anywhere using the latest Ruby mobile technology! Choose Your Caller ID is included in the standard Ruby service offering and available to all Ruby customers by installing our Android or iPhone app. Every Ruby customer automatically gets a business number to call from, but we’re happy to host any number you like. Just give us a call at 866-611-7829 or email email@example.com to get set up!
Missed connections translate to lost revenue. With Ruby, you have a partner in gaining and retaining customers. Plus, we’re so confident you’ll love our service, we offer a 21 day money-back guarantee*.
*Ruby is delighted to offer a money-back guarantee to first time users of both our virtual receptionist service and our chat service. To cancel your service and obtain a full refund for the canceled service (less any multi-service discount), please notify us of the service you wish to cancel either within 21 days of your purchase of that service or before your usage exceeds 500 receptionist minutes/50 billable chats, as applicable, whichever occurs sooner. Some restrictions may apply.