News Article

19 April 2010

"WOW! They really did do it"

Lunn's are Northern Ireland's leading Jewellers, with shops in Belfast and Londonderry. Specialising in diamond rings, superb jewellery both modern and antique, top Swiss watches and fine giftware. They are so proud that they have provided the highest quality service for over 50 years. The company is a family business and the MD is Peter J. Lunn [- we have written about Peter on this website before; see "Another great example of a company's best defence against economic meltdown! 8 November 2008], who rightly prides himself on his straightforward vision to "blow everyone's mind with the quality of service they receive in Lunn's". This extra special service is known within the Lunn's business as the "WOW service".

You may think that many other high quality retailers have similar ideals. However, what makes Lunn's different is:-

1. They deliver!

As Chairman of Value the Person International, I have worked closely with Lunn's over the last few years and I sit as a non-executive board director. Therefore, I believe I am in a good position to judge their astonishing progress.

But, it's not just my subjective opinion you should rely on. Lunn's recent customer survey [- an in depth annual survey, covering all aspects of customer views and opinions, and conducted independently] has recently shown that 90% of customers rated their overall experience at all Lunn's stores as "excellent"!!

Something else which makes Lunn's different and reflects the determination of their MD to fulfil their vision is the way the results of this survey are acted upon by the senior management team [SMT]. The SMT don't just sit back and applaud themselves but, instead, they analyse the results, making concrete plans to address specific issues.

This determination of senior managers to work on their outstanding issues and never accepting that they "have arrived", has resulted in year on year improvements in their results which outstrip their competition.

It is certainly worth mentioning that a very important member of the senior management team is Lizanne Gibson, the People Development Manager. Lizanne has a small but extremely effective People Development Team (PDD). It is this PDD team who ensure that Peter's leadership input, the SMT's practical plans and the ideas of all Lunn's staff are integrated into deliverable results.

2. They extend their vision to all who work in Lunn's and their suppliers!

You may think that most companies would be happy with providing the WOW experience to their customers - but not Lunn's!

But Peter Lunn is a different kind of leader and doesn't stop at providing this WOW experience to his customers. Instead, he implores everyone throughout the business [- including Finance, Commercial, Marketing, etc.] to "WOW your colleagues no matter where they work in the company!" [- quote from the April 2010 edition of Lunn's Loupe.] Again, you don't have to take my word for it that, this is not just the kind of nice words that many senior managers say to employees. In Lunn's there is proof that they mean it. In a recent motivational questionnaire [- an in depth, diagnostic questionnaire which is conducted every six months and conducted independently] Lunn's became a "great" company by exceeding the required "engaged" and "disengaged" employees throughout the company. There are two very important points to note here for those readers who are interested in maximising the productivity, profit and internal & external customer satisfaction of their own teams:-

1. Once more, Lunn's SMT don't just congratulate themselves for excellent results that their competition are really envious of. Instead, they analyse these results, making concrete plans to address specific motivational issues in every department in the company.

2. Over the last couple of years or so since they started to conduct this six-monthly motivational survey, the SMT have achieved ever improving results. Nonetheless, they outlaw any attitude that suggests that they have arrived; they never take the motivation of Lunn's people for granted.

Some may look at Lunn's and say: "Well, as Northern Ireland's leading jeweller and selling all the leading brands, Lunn's can be expected to out-perform their competition even in a global recession." My honest answer to this is assertion is (- and here I am being subjective) that Lunn's are a great business with highly motivated employees and extremely satisfied and loyal customers because they have a great leader at the helm, supported by a great senior management team, who focus on the people aspects of their business - namely, employees, customers and suppliers. Congratulations to Lunn's for leading the way.