It was right back a couple of years ago when I was writing my operating guidelines for my own Mystery Shopping and Customer Experience Franchisees that I had to think about that one: how am I going to Mystery Shop and Mystery Shopper??
The trick in Mystery Shopping is to measure the KPIs (key performance indicators) your Franchisees deliver to their customers and be sure that they follow the guidelines you spent a lot of time to create, and I am with you on that one, it wasn’t an easy task to do and I know how long it takes to actually put your brain onto paper so someone else can do exactly what you do, but are they??
That’s when Mystery Shopping your Franchisees can be a very useful tool to ensure the consistency in the service delivery of course, but also to ensure your brand standards and the processes that you have put in place are being followed.
So, when you are putting a Mystery Shopping programme together to measure your Franchisees, take the time to really think about what is it that you want to measure, like any other programme, start with the end in mind? What do you want to know when the results come in? What is crucial and what is less crucial although still important enough that you want to know how they doing?
I always say, ‘Measure to manage, measure to celebrate success’:
- Measure what’s important
- Be very open and transparent with your franchisees about the programme and your reasons for doing it
- Publish the metrics and benchmarks
- Review the results with your Franchisees during your monthly call and help them create an action plan
- Celebrate success, this can be rewarding people for achieving and exceeding their goals, this could be internal or at the Franchise level. Rewarding doesn’t have to be financial, there are many other ways you can make someone feel valued, be creative.
Mystery Shopping is one metric that can be used to measure your brand standards, it is always a good idea at the Franchisees’ level to use other tools to assess their customers’ satisfaction and needs, surveying their employees and benchmarking themselves with the competition, you can find more on “Measuring” and “Assessing” in my book Thrive with the Hive, which will give you more details on how to do that.