In our service economy, expectations are higher than ever concerning the professional conduct of employees. Even a minor infraction, like chewing gum at the wrong time, can lead to lost business.
Here are 12 suggestions to help you review whether your company is doing all it can to ensure that every time a client is in contact with a staff member, that interaction is positive and professional.
Not all of the following suggestions apply to every business, but most companies will find at least one or two suggestions worth pursuing.

Suggestion Comments Cost
Training/Coaching Classes in presentation skills, speaking, telephone etiquette, customer interactions/dialogues, etc.  For both new hires and continuing education. $$$
Surveys/Feedback Ongoing programs for employees to receive direct, actionable feedback from clients and supervisors. $$
Time Management Emphasize punctuality and the importance of keeping to schedules. Consider time management seminars. $
Corporate Guidelines Communicate to all employees the importance of professional behavior through published “do’s” and “don’ts”, regularly reviewed during team meetings. $
Uniforms Clean, well-designed, good-fitting uniforms instantly convey professionalism.  Employees feel better about themselves and know their company cares. $$$
Signage on Vehicles Cars or trucks must be recent models, in good condition.  On-vehicle graphics must be high-quality. $$$$$
Dress/grooming standards Ensure all employees follow a consistent, appropriate dress code.  Make clear expectations on the maintenance of personal appearance and grooming. $
Name Badges Well-designed plastic “Hi! My Name is . . . ” badges can help make customers feel more comfortable. $
Photo ID Cards High-quality, secure Plastic ID cards with photo, name, and a printed company logo reassure clients and convey competence. $
Company Literature Ensure all employees carry company documentation, printed professionally and presented in attractive folders. $$
Internal Recognition Publish success stories demonstrating positive behavior in newsletters. Give awards for exceptional performance. $
Reward Good Behavior Base a part of every employee’s bonus on objective evaluations of his/her professionalism, as measured in a consistent, unbiased manner. $$$