As the COVID-19 pandemic has forced a change to how people go about their lives, businesses have similarly seen their operations uprooted. From seeing a decrease in sales to shifting how they deliver their product and services, businesses are conducting business differently than they were six months ago. 

Two major factors businesses have needed to confront—and the focus areas of an upcoming Prosper Jeferson webinar—are employee engagement and customer service. Omega’s CEO, Ben Zapata, was invited by the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce and the Jefferson Economic Development Corporation (JEDCO) to offer insights and best practices about employee engagement at the June 17th virtual event, Employee Engagement and Customer Service During the Pandemic.

During his presentation, Zapata will discuss how leaders can acknowledge the hardship for their staff and embrace the challenge as leader. “The last three months have been hard on all of us,” he said. “But I chose to start and lead a company, and so it’s up to me to show my employees that I understand what they’re going through.” Doing so will keep employees engaged as businesses resume some semblance of normal operations.

Other factors in achieving an engaged workforce include leading with empathy, showing vulnerability, and communicating intentionally. “I am a lifelong learner, so I have picked up many lessons along the way. I learn from my own experiences and mistakes, and by hearing from others. I look forward to sharing some of these lessons about interacting with staff.” Zapata will give examples of the “little things” that he is doing for his staff. He will also discuss how choosing your words carefully can make a big difference. 

During normal times and during a pandemic, employee engagement has a real effect on a company’s bottom line. Engaged employees are happier and more productive, which leads to better interactions with customers. In addition to Omega’s Ben Zapata, the webinar will feature two customer service experts from Entergy. They will discuss the importance of customer service during a pandemic and reopening. They will also discuss strategies for customer service, which will be valuable now and into the future.

The Prosper Jefferson webinar will take place on Wednesday, June 17 at 11am. It is free and open to the public, and a recording of the webinar will be available on JEDCO’s website. Click here to register.

Prosper Jefferson is a seminar series co-hosted by JEDCO and the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce. The series was created in 2015 to educate, inspire and assist small business owners in Jefferson Parish and around the region. Speakers from around the business community join us each month to highlight an informational topic developed to assist our local businesses in achieving growth and success. During the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, Prosper Jefferson was moved to a webinar form. Click here to learn more.