Making customers happy starts with your coworkers! We strive for a workplace where staff can enjoy their work in a culture of openness and trust.
GU Setagaya kinuta Iwasaki
Congratulations on your Best Employee Award! What factors contributed to your win?
I believe my efforts to foster an environment of smooth communication and my proactive attitude were noticed. The number one factor might have been my initiatives to create opportunities for staff to interact with each other, such as planning numerous after work get-togethers. Those interactions allow staff to overcome the workplace hierarchy and a more casual kind of communication emerges, in a good way. Once they've interacting with supervisors in a setting where they can be open and direct, employees feel less anxious about going to them for help if they've made a mistake at work, and these interactions foster a sense of "doing it for the team" in addition to "doing it for the customer." There's nothing that gives me greater joy than seeing this result in a more positive store environment and customer satisfaction!
Your reason for joining GU
I had a love of fashion so I thought I would want to work somewhere apparel-related, and also my house was close – the reasons were that simple (laughs). But the number one determining factor was how positive the store environment was when I visited GU. All the customers who had finished shopping and were heading home looked happy. When I saw that, I believed that at GU I would be able to learn how to really satisfy customers while growing as a person, so I interviewed for a position at the newly opening Kinuta location in Setagaya. Once hired, I was blessed to be around great colleagues and full-time staff, which has allowed me to keep enjoying my work.
What gives you a sense of fulfillment in your work?
It's not common to have someone express their heartfelt gratitude to you. For example, when I suggested an idea for coordinated items, I was looked in the eye and told "I'm really glad we asked you to do this, Iwasaki. Thank you," which made me really glad to be working at GU. There are many kinds of customer service industries, but working in customer service in the apparel industry means the customers are entrusting you with an important element of their daily lives. To ensure that our customers are happy with both their products and the service, those of us on the sales floor always have a smile on our faces and strive to ensure we have the appropriate product knowledge.
What's something you focus on doing to make your customers happy?
I am constantly focused on treating each customer as an individual to understand what they’re looking for. Even if a situation seems familiar, the words and actions that each customer desires can vary greatly. I often find myself relying on rules of thumb, but I will assess the vibe I get from our non-regular shoppers and check in on them as appropriate. I also remind myself that I’m not providing customer service alone, but rather that the entire store is working together to welcome our customers.