Yukihide Shibuya, Managing Director & General Manager-TRI
In Japan, Kazokushugi (Familism), a philosophy that places the needs of a team over that of the individual members, forms the critical aspect of the managerial practices and motivational techniques. Kazokushugi is the essence of the mutuality between management and the workforce, facilitating strong ties between employees and their organization. This homely bond between managers and employees help companies to address the issues of employee dissatisfaction better, thereby lowering the turnover rates and optimizing the service-profit chain in the organization. Drawing inspiration from the ethos of this Japanese philosophy, MS & Consulting—a research and management consulting services provider—seeks to bolster employee engagement through its highly interactive communication platform “tenpoket.”
Since its inception in 2008 as a research and management consulting service company, MS & Consulting has stood by its mission of “building a mentally wealthy society.” “Through our consultancy services, we realized that employee satisfaction is critical for any organization’s success. Low employee satisfaction results in poor employee engagement, which takes a toll on the company’s productivity,” remarks Yukihide Shibuya, Managing Director & General Manager-TRI at MS & Consulting. Shibuya goes on to mention that at a time when many service industries in Japan suffer from labor shortage and the ratio of active job openings is still rising, organizations must improve employee satisfaction. In doing so, they can reduce staff turnover and enhance service quality, while also saving additional recruitment costs.
Determined to change this industry narrative, MS & Consulting devised the highly interactive tool, “tenpoket” that brings forth the reasons behind employee malaise, and provides relevant recommendations to managers to augment the employee satisfaction level within the organization. As a one-stop service, “tenpoket” allows clients to make employee engagement, team condition, and leadership visible. Besides including a comprehensive survey, “tenpoket” specializes in extracting a point to improve, supporting leaders to make an improvement plan, recommending some real improvement case, and allowing interactive communication. “tenpoket” enables clients to step forward for improving employee engagement. “This advanced communication tool helps connect customers with stores and employees with executives,” adds Shibuya.
Owing to its unique utilization fee that is calculated based on the number of teams (shop or section) and not users, “tenpoket” becomes a widely accepted tool amongst all categories of staff, regular as well as non-regular. “tenpoket” enables managers to validate attitudes that staff and employees have toward their leaders or the organization as a whole. The advanced communication tool is tailor-made to cater to the service sector that includes restaurants, apparel shops, supermarkets, drugstore, cosmetic stores, fitness gym, business hotels, banks, and others.
The “tenpoket” powered Employee Satisfaction (ES) survey comprises a comprehensive questionnaire involving 36 questions. “tenpoket” ES survey evaluates a company based on the five factors–leadership, team hospitality, team capability, job autonomy, and job satisfaction, that essentially revolves around three main domains– manager, team members, and self.
Through our consultancy services, we realized that employee satisfaction is critical for the success of any organization. Low employee satisfaction results in poor employee engagement, which takes a toll in company’s productivity
On the other hand, the statistically tested questionnaire stresses on the psychological scale development method. Supervised and chosen by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) by trial-error judgment, these questions focus on the psychology of the employees. A resultant average score is then calculated based on the normalized Z score of the questionnaire. It is further standardized by the 96,000 pre-stored employee data collected from MS & Consulting’s widespread clientele base. This analysis brings to light the loopholes within the organization, complexities faced by the employees, reasons behind employee turnover, and gives managers ideas to reinforce their ties with the employees.
In essence, Japan-based MS & Consulting helps managers realize the strengths and shortcomings by service benchmarking based on its impressive record of over one million answers and 300 real case studies from nation-wide companies. This imparts shop managers’ decision-making capabilities, enabling them to overcome the loopholes by taking inspiration from the solved case scenarios and devising an effective plan based on the company’s maturity level. Thereby, “tenpoket” helps to establish a profitable service profit chain in companies and shops through a unique technique comprising three essential components–employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction, and profitability. It plays an instrumental role in employee retention by giving managers a detailed understanding of the current employee engagement status and proposing real-time recommendations that accurately address the client company’s issue based on the ES survey results. The robust communication tool also tracks and intimates the progress of the plan to the managers.
Elaborating on the company’s client on-boarding process, Shibuya mentions that the expert team of consultants at MS & Consulting interview the client’s shop manager, area manager, and executive to figure out the factors governing employee engagement and team productivity. The next step involves analyzing the ES data and index of performance like customer satisfaction and explaining the report to the client’s executive. This puts into perspective the relationship between employee engagement and company performance and suggests them ideas to improve the same. The holistic tool thereby encompasses all the aspects of employee engagement and propels managers towards an effective service profit chain within the organization.
To get a better understanding of the above scenario, Shibuya cites a case study of the Higo Bank, who used MS & Consulting’s comprehensive ES toolkit–“tenpoket.” After the survey, MS & Consulting analyzed the results and saw a significant decrease in the participation and enthusiasm of young employees. Together with its team of expert consultants and person-in-charge of personnel management, MS & Consulting figured out the significant reasons and implemented measures that bolstered the communication between young employees and their superiors.
Taking pride in solving the employee engagement issues and bolstering the relationship between manager and their employees, MS & Consulting is looking forward to clarifying the connection between ES and customer satisfaction (CS), and how it relates to profitability. Moving forward, the company aims to expand the functionalities of its “tenpoket” platform. “In some companies, ES and CS or ES and profitability are linked well, but in others, they are not. To clarify these differences is an important area of research that we are considering shortly,” concludes Shibuya.