Hickory Training

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Hickory Training

Hickory is the only training tool focused on retention, turning your sales and customer service staff into brand experts. 



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  • How to Update Your Employee Training Without Stressing Everyone Out
    The most common thing we deal with here at Hickory is my chocolate cravings. It’s bad. We make emergency runs to Whole Foods for the special Icelandic bars with sea salt. If you haven’t had them, I recommend. The second most common thing we deal with is a need to update training courses because of […]
  • How To Ask Better Questions (And Why The Success Of Your Employee Training Depends On It)
    I’m obsessed with questions. The questions we ask define our lives. They frame information, opening new ways of thinking, expose  gaps in our current thinking. As we’ll see, when it comes to training employees, asking good questions will define the success or failure of our program. Using ‘What’ Questions in Training   The first type […]
  • The #1 Thing Most Customer Service Training Programs Get Dead Wrong
    We’ve had the good fortune of watching numerous companies create and update their customer service training programs over time. It’s a fascinating exercise, and every single program has unique differences, problems, and focuses. Even with their differences—however—there’s one mistake we see companies make over and over that dramatically reduces the effectiveness of their training. It’s […]
  • How Much Does Speed Impact Customer Satisfaction Scores?
    We dig data here at Hickory. We find that many problems become far simpler when we can have the right numbers. When it comes to improving CSAT scores, there are two key stats we try to capture with the companies we work with: Speed of resolution Speed of response We measure these two KPIs over […]
  • The Biggest Myth In Customer Service, Debunked
    Customer service bloggers and speakers love to talk about the value of “personal, above-and-beyond support at any cost.” They’ll share stories of Ritz-Carlton’s legendary customer service policies. They’ll tell you about the one time a Nordstrom rep opened the store early for them. They’ll try to make you believe that the only way to be […]
  • 3 Ways To Build Failure Into Your Employee Training (And Why You Should)
    Most employee training programs are designed solely around knowledge delivery. Employees attend a class or watch a video series, then they take a quiz to “certify” their understanding. The problem? 70% of employee training is forgotten within five days. If that much is forgotten, we have to ask: “Is it really worth sending employees to […]
  • Why Most Business’ Policy Changes Don’t Stick (Hint: It’s The Employee Training)
    Building a great training program is deceptively hard. For example, let’s say you change your refund policy and expect a savings of around $50 per refund. You train your customer service team and launch the new policy. Refund amounts go down, but not as much as you had hoped. Looking into it, not all of […]
  • The Best Way to Help Your Employees Retain What They Learn in Training
    We often think we know something better than we actually do. For example, most customer service reps go through lengthy training sessions to learn what they should do in different situations. These sessions usually include a quiz at the end to “certify” knowledge of the topic. But… Three weeks from now, when an angry customer […]
  • Is Memory Still Important?
  • Memory Retention: Instructional Design Tips #5: User Engagement – Fun!
    In the last post on Instructional Design Tips I listed the five strategies Hickory uses to maximize user engagement: Setting user expectations. Aligning Hickory with training milestones. Managers conveying the importance of Hickory. Making users active stakeholders. Making the experience fun. Previous posts have talked about all of these, except fun. We save the best […]