Nowadays, companies are encouraged to diversify their workforces. Yet it is very easy for a trading company to end up failing on this particular account (of staff diversity). It is very easy to end up with a trading company where all workers are men, specifically middle-aged men. Or, in another case, it is very easy to end up with a trading company where all workers are of a certain race or where all staff members subscribe to a certain religion. Embracing staff diversity is clearly not always easy. But it is critical: for some studies that have shown that companies with a good mix of staff (in terms of diversity) tend to perform better and are more resilient than companies that are poor in terms of staff diversity.
There are some companies that strictly prefer to hire people who fit a certain rather (thin) profile. If you ask them why don’t hire people from other groups, they give all manner of excuses. Some will tell you that people from those other groups are ‘unfocused’, ‘lazy’, ‘irresponsible’… and so on. A HR manager once told me that she stopped hiring people from a certain group when she found out that one employee from that group was spending all his work-time watching fxnetworks series. It alarmed me that an entire group of people was suffering discrimination due to the sins of just one individual. But such is the thinking of bigots.
Enhancing staff diversity in your trading company shouldn’t be too hard, if you really want to do it. It is just a question of looking at your current workforce, and asking yourself how it can be diversified. This may be a question of trying to figure out which other groups of people (in terms of gender, race, age and so on) you need to include, to have a more diversified workforce. Then the next step would be to simply ensure that you hire more people from those groups, in order to attain the desired diversity. Remember, you don’t have to compromise on qualifications or competencies, to get a more diversified workforce. If you search hard enough, you can get people from all backgrounds who have the requisite qualifications and competencies for the various roles in your trading company.
As your trading company grows, it will soon get to a point where you will have to set up a customer service department. This is the department that would be tasked with the responsibility of handling customers’ complaints and concerns. It is also the department that would be handling enquiries from customers, and generally ensuring that customers are well attended to.
While setting up a customer service department for a trading company, you will need to:
- Hire the customer service personnel: these need to be people who have pleasant personalities. They also need to be folks who have requisite training and experience in customer service.
- Set up the customer service infrastructure: so this is a question of first acquiring the premises where the customer service department is to be based. Then you need to acquire the phones and computers that are to be used in customer service. Many organizations prefer to base the customer service department near the marketing department. That makes sense, because many of the issues that the customer service department deals with require input from the marketing department. In fact, there are organizations where the customer service is set up as a section within the broader marketing department.
- Create a customer service manual: this would give concise and precise instructions on how various customers’ issues are to be handled. In the absence of a customer service manual, the personnel are left to use their own discretion in dealing with customers’ issues. This is likely to lead to some rather awkward situations, because certain individuals may not always make the right decisions, if they are left to use their own discretions.
- Train the customer service personnel: you need to train your customer service personnel on how exactly you’d want your trading company’s customers to be handled. Don’t assume that the personnel will handle the customers in the right manner, just because they (the personnel) are individuals with good personalities or just because there is a customer service manual. You need to hold training sessions, where you emphasize the key points on how you’d want your company’s customers to be handled.