- –Detailed power outage information via online and mobile friendly maps
- –E-mail and text power outage notifications, and
- –E-mail and text weather alerts.
Cox Communications is recruiting for multiple full time sales and customer care positions as well as part time collections positions for its Phoenix locations. Additionally, Cox is hiring several bilingual sales and retention employees for the Phoenix area’s national Cox Spanish Center of Excellence.
Interested candidates can apply online now at the Cox website’s Careers page found at www.Cox.com.
Cox employees receive competitive benefits and perks such as:
• Medical and dental insurance on day #1
• Vision insurance
• Discounted Cox TV, Internet and phone services
• Tuition reimbursement
• 401 (k) plan
Cox Arizona prides itself in its exciting and fast-paced work environment that strives to engage employees through community involvement and personal growth. In addition to topping numerous J.D. Power and Associates’ lists, Cox has been named one of Top Best 25 Places for Women to Work, and Cox employees give back to the communities through the more than 39,000 hours of volunteer services logged by employees last year.
After 50 years working with a range of companies—as well as founding and running my own company, J.D. Power and Associates—I have observed a good deal, and come away with a few thoughts about how to have the best shot at success in business.
The businesses I’ve seen grow, adapt, and thrive are the ones that keep a focus on satisfying customers by listening to them, anticipate their needs and desires, and maintain their organizations’ prioritizing of these principles.
Whether I’m speaking with business school students or seasoned executives, I find that my advice incorporates ten basic lessons I’ve learned throughout my career.
1. Listen—to your customers, your employees, and your stakeholders.
I have witnessed too many car manufacturers move further away from achieving satisfied customers by refusing to listen to them. One example that sticks in my mind is that of Peugeot back in the 1980s. They were trying to broaden their appeal and expand their share of the American car market, but they were unwilling to listen to customer complaints about difficulties starting their advanced fuel-injected cars. Peugeot was an early adopter of fuel injection, and American customers were “flooding” the engine by pumping the gas, something that was necessary in conventional engines at that time. Customers saw this as a quality issue, but rather than hearing this as a problem, they held fast, confident that fuel injection was superior from an engineering standpoint. No doubt they were right, but by not listening and adapting to their customers they lost them, and by the early 1990s they had to abandon the American market.
2, Remember who the client is. In a B2B world it is the organization or business you serve, not just the guy or gal sitting across from you.
This is important from two perspectives. It is critical that you not serve the desires of the representative assigned to work with you to the disservice of the organization. On the flipside, you must feel empowered to not let that person become an obstacle to the organization receiving the information necessary to take full advantage of your services. I frequently encountered a situation where the person assigned to work with us put up roadblocks to information reaching further up the chain of command because it undermined his own position within the organization. I worked around this by sending letters directly to top leaders or using the press to get out the critical information, knowing that it was only when our message could not be ignored that true change for the organization could occur.
3. Empower your employee to be curious, to do the right thing for the business, to speak up. You need the right kind of leadership and a strong culture to make it work but there is nothing more valuable.
At J.D. Power, if an employee came up with an idea, they owned it. This engendered tremendous initiative and loyalty, and may have been one of the greatest keys to J.D. Power’s lasting success.
4. Relationships matter, but they need to be built on a bedrock of respect and trust, not just friendships.
I never approached business relationships as requiring glad-handing or wining and dining. In the beginning, I simply couldn’t afford it, but as J.D. Power’s success widened, I found that true relationships with executives came from providing them with the clear, actionable information they needed to do their jobs, not time on the golf course.
5. Have empathy, be kind.
Of course this applies to all of the individuals in your own organization who come together to provide the support you need to run your business—from your CFO to the cleaning crew. It’s a Golden Rule in my book. I found that it inspires employees to show that you care about them enough to acknowledge them, and ask about their families. Another example is with regard to my clients. Sometimes you don’t agree with what they are doing, or you know that they are in an unwinnable the position. I felt a compassion for them and always tried to make sure that our information was there to help them.
6. Be willing to look at situations from unusual directions to seek the “truth.”
Don’t be afraid to take a counter-intuitive position in order to generate better ideas. The Jesuit education I received at the College of the Holy Cross provided a basis in questioning the status quo, a trait that has served me well.
7. Accept change.
I really believe that you need to anticipate changes, be flexible, and move with the trends. We are in the Information Age today. The rise of the Internet and its impact on retailing is the most recent example of the ways companies must adapt in order to survive, but there has never been a time when change was not actively underway.
8. Stay true to your values.
Part of your brand is what you are—and, at the core, what you are is made up of your values. Whether you are an individual or an organization, you must keep your compass aligned to the virtues that guide you. At our company, I really felt that we kept the organization focused on the “Three I’s”: Independence, Impact, and Integrity.
9. Find information and inspiration in the work of others.
I have long been a student of the writings of Walter Wriston, Peter Drucker, W. Edwards Deming, and Alvin Toffler. Their observations are still compelling today, as are myriad others who can offer insight and perspective that will be invaluable to your pursuits.
10. Don’t “torture the data till it confesses.”
Don’t be blind to all but the good news you may want to hear. Consciously or unconsciously interpreting information that comes across your desk in a way that supports past decisions rather than illuminates needed improvements is short-sighted and won’t bring you closer to the satisfied customers who will ultimately dictate your success.
These ten principles guided me through a successful and satisfying career. The individuals I dealt with who shared a similar view of business invariably had the respect of clients and colleagues, and the markers of success were realized for them as well.
James “David” Power is the founder of J.D. Power and Associates. Stories from fifty years in the auto industry are shared in the new book, Power: How J.D. Power III Became the Auto Industry’s Adviser, Confessor, and Eyewitness to History.
Salt River Project’s electric customers continue to give SRP high marks for customer satisfaction. In a report issued today by J.D. Power and Associates, SRP received the top score for residential electric service in the Large Utilities segment in the western United States for the 12th consecutive year and the highest total among the nation’s largest utilities for the fifth year in a row.
SRP’s ranking was bolstered by sweeping the No. 1 spot in the survey’s Large Utilities segment in the West region for all six survey components, Power Quality and Reliability, Billing and Payment, Corporate Citizenship, Price, Communications and Customer Service. Among all large utilities across the nation, SRP scored highest in customer satisfaction for the eighth time in the 15 years J.D. Power and Associates has conducted its study of residential customers. With a Customer Satisfaction Index score of 709 on a 1,000-point scale in this year’s ranking, SRP is the only electric utility that has been ranked among the top 10 in the U.S. in all 15 years.
It is the 14th time in the last 15 years that SRP scored the highest in the West among large electric utilities (500,000 or more residential customers). The average score in the West large region, which covers utilities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, was 654.
The 2013 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study was based on responses from about 103,000 online interviews conducted from July 2012 through May 2013 among residential customers of the 126 largest electric utility brands across the nation, which collectively represent more than 94 million households. More information on the J.D. Power and Associates’ study can be found at www.jdpower.com/library/index.htm.
SRP is the largest provider of electricity to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, providing electric service to more than 970,000 customers. SRP also is the metropolitan area’s largest supplier of water, delivering about 1 million acre-feet to agricultural, urban and municipal water users.
For the third straight year, Shea Homes ranks highest in customer satisfaction with new-home builders in the Phoenix market, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2010 New-Home Builder Customer Satisfaction Study released today.
“The downturn of the housing market — along with intensified competition for a very limited pool of home buyers — has reinforced the importance of customer focus for new-home builders,” says Dale Haines, senior director of the real estate and construction industries practice at J.D. Power and Associates. “In this buyers’ market, builders that are attentive to customer needs and focus on relationship building stand the best chance of enduring through the market recovery.”
The study, now in its 14th year, includes satisfaction rankings for builders in 17 markets. Nine factors drive overall customer satisfaction with new-home builders: builder’s sales staff; builder’s warranty/customer service staff; workmanship/materials; price/value; home readiness; construction manager; recreational facilities provided by the builder; builder’s design center; and location.
Shea Homes achieved a score of 922 on a 1,000-point scale in 2010 — which represents an increase of 19 points from 903 in 2009 — and performs particularly well in the Phoenix market in six of the nine factors: builder’s sales staff; builder’s design center; construction manager; workmanship/materials; home readiness; and builder’s warranty/customer service staff.
The average customer satisfaction index score in the Phoenix market is 872 — 46 points above the 17-market average of 826. Satisfaction has improved substantially in the Phoenix market in 2010 — up 29 points from 2009.
Overall customer satisfaction across all 17 markets has improved for a third consecutive year, averaging 826 — the highest level since the inception of the study in 1997. Markets with the highest levels of overall satisfaction in 2010 include Phoenix, Las Vegas, southern California, Orlando, Fla., and Sacramento, Calif. Overall satisfaction has increased in 15 of the 17 individual markets that were also surveyed in 2009.
Centex Homes ranks highest in new-home quality in the Phoenix market. Home quality in the Phoenix market has improved considerably from 2009, averaging 856 in 2010 — up by 26 points from the previous year.
The problems reported most often in this market include: landscaping issues, exterior paint, and kitchen cabinet quality/finish.
Overall new-home quality across all 17 markets has increased notably to an average of 844 in 2010, reaching a record high. Home quality has improved from 2009 in 15 of the 17 markets. Overall, the most commonly reported quality problems include issues with landscaping; kitchen cabinet quality and finish; and heating and air conditioning.
New-home builders have improved from 2009 in raising awareness of the “green” features of their homes. Approximately 61 percent of new-home owners in the Phoenix market in 2010 perceive that their home is environmentally friendly, compared with just 31 percent in 2009. In addition, the proportion of new-home owners in the Phoenix market who indicate that their builder did not identify the home as green has declined to 51 percent in 2010 from 63 percent in 2009.
“In this hypercompetitive market, green features have become a crucial selling point, since new-home buyers are seeking to save on energy costs, as well as to increase the value of their home,” Haines says.
To be included in the studies, Phoenix-area builders must have closed 150 or more homes in the market in 2009. The new homes are located in Maricopa and Pinal counties.
The studies are based on responses from more than 16,400 buyers of newly built single-family homes that provided feedback after living in their home from 4 to 18 months, on average. There were 1,641 respondents in the Phoenix market.
For rankings for all 17 U.S. markets, visit www.jdpower.com/homes.