Originally Posted by Steve
That is fantastic!
Can you tell us what the difference is between a customer handbook and an employee handbook and when the two are used?
Both versions of the handbook may seem to be a little "extreme" in our field of work - but the fact we are willing to go to these new heights by providing them indicates that we have structure, and an overall stronger presence.
From a customers perspective, we are "invisible" - meaning we're hired and that's as far as our interactions will go. We are viewed exactly like garbage men and the postman. I'm not saying that those are bad positions at all, but my point is that we aren't seen as being "special" enough to have real interactions with.
Face it, we are "The guys who show up to cut our grass every week or so" - this differs depending on each individual customer, but I'm focusing on what I suppose can be called the majority of them.
Building presence opens up new doors for opportunity, and a
"Customer Handbook" sounds like a great start.
It's advertising that your customers can possibly enjoy or even learn from, something that will get them thinking. One thought they may have is,
"how come my last lawn company didn't offer me this five-star material?"
Your customers will take note of your commitment and professionalism when they receive their copy.
As for an "Employee Handbook", this is a document that can save you loads of time and money, especially for newer crew.
Just imagine having a new helper finish his first work day and then be told to study up on chapters 1-3 before tomorrow. When the next day does come, you can refer to the book if needed, and hopefully your helper will understand exactly what you are talking about without going into such deep detail.
What your "Handbook" includes is entirely up to you. You may want to write what your expectations are, and to also include blank pages at the end of each section so that they can fill out answers to possible questionnaires you may give them. *Be sure to add a lot of study material
*. Remember, all of this can be connected to your website for that "Wow" factor.
If you want the perfect employee, your book should have all the material to make it possible!
Don't forget to grade your employee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This makes it easier to criticize his/her performance without being a complete nag. Your employee should be given a grade on performance not only from the material you two work with, but the performance on the field. This way he/she will realize where their weakness is coming from, and you can help them improve without seeming like the bad guy.
On the final page of the book, you can write in big bold text, "THE OWNER IS ALLOWED TO MAKE MISTAKES, HAHA!"