You are here

Care management: supporting customer relations?

Comment le management par le care nourrit la relation client ?
Published on
18 June 2020

The unprecedented Covid-19 crisis has made it all the more relevant to take special care of clients and employees. How can companies combine taking care of their employees, their clients and their employer brand?

Interview with Benoît Meyronin, a professor at Grenoble Ecole de Management, the president of the school's foundation, and general manager at Care Experience (DOMPLUS group). He is also the co-author of « Replacer vraiment l'humain au cœur de l'entreprise : le management par le care » (Vuibert, 2019).

What is "care management"?

"Care management" is a unique approach that focuses on the relationship to others, the challenges of interdependence and reciprocity. It was inspired by the "care ethics" movement that started in the 1980s in the USA. This approach starts by setting up the foundations for a management style that takes care of clients, employees and managers. You can think of "care management" in global terms in which clients and employees are first and foremost "people". The guiding principles are trust, listening, responsibility and recognition. This approach matches current challenges in customer experience and the issue is to understand how to improve this experience thanks to special actions to care for clients in a way that distinguishes the company from competitors.

What are the challenges of customer care in times of crisis? What evolutions are necessary?

The key point is that clients, and therefore employees and managers, will recognize and appreciate specific attention given to them by the company. During the post-covid-19 period, the challenge is to create additional means to reassure clients in a way that goes beyond official health guidelines. This is an opportunity to transform a negative experience into a positive, and even, surprising experience.

The idea is to gloss over the limitations of this current situation by providing particular attention to clients: how can you create an agreeable relationship with masks, gloves, social distancing…? This is particularly true for hotels and restaurants which will have to find ways of demonstrating empathy, a warm and welcoming posture despite unwelcoming healthcare guidelines.

The second issue is to question how you can support teams as a manager in order to create a reassuring feeling within this unusual context. For example, train stations that welcome many passengers every day are areas that foster important feelings of fear. How do you create an employee experience that is reassuring and agreable in such a context? That's the real challenge.

What are your recommendations in terms of best practices for care management?

First you have to be aware of the Covid-19 context and its implications. This will enable you to act as an adult. You cannot sidestep present health issues, you have to open dialogue and listen to employees' fears all the while operating in a way that respects health guidelines.

The next step is to work together in order to find ways of ensuring the employee and customer experiences are as agreeable as possible. You have to anticipate the customer experience (on the internet before opening and then in the store) in order to create a positive environment. All of this must be prepared as a team: how do we want to re-open? What can we offer before customers come back to the store? etc.

There is also a challenge to be met in terms of creating agreeable spaces that are essential for customer relationships. The current crisis offers a unique opportunity to create a space that reduces anxiety and demonstrates concrete actions to support customers in hotels, restaurants, banks… All such locations can compete in terms of how they implement signs and design for new health guidelines. Physical spaces can play an important role in perceptions and behaviors.

Finally, the "care" logic invites us to pay special attention to at-risk individuals, whether customers or employees: seniors, pregnant women or disabled people.

Webinar link
Benoît Meyronin blog

On the same subject

  • Published on 17 July 2020

    Emotional skills generate added value for business

    Emotional skills are essential to foster positive relationships, collaboration and co-innovation. By training an employee’s capacity to identify and manage emotions, companies improve their efficiency and decision-making processes.

  • Infox : comment se prémunir des fake news ?
    Published on 17 July 2020

    How to recognize fake news?

    In times of crisis, fake news can take on unprecedented proportions as seen during the Covid-19 epidemic. How can you sort fact from fiction and help promote the spread of useful, factual information?

  • Published on 18 June 2020

    War vs. economic peace in times of crisis

    “We are at war.” The strong language used by the French President to describe the Covid-19 crisis highlights the faults of our current economic & societal model, which is based on aggression and competitiveness.

  • La crise Covid-19. « Éviter la politique du plus petit des grands pas »
    Published on 18 June 2020

    Covid-19: economic recession and government policies

    Many countries worldwide, and the French government in particular, were quick to implement measures to reduce the short-term economic consequences of the Covid lockdown. Yet the crisis is far from over. What comes next?

  • Published on 21 April 2020

    Covid-19 Weekly Update from the Experts at GEM. Issue No.5

    Grenoble Ecole de Management propose un 5ème numéro de ses points de vue d’experts sur les évolutions du monde engendrées par l’épidémie du Covid-19. Au programme cette semaine : confinement...

  • Published on 21 April 2020

    Covid-19 : les experts de GEM décryptent l’impact de l’épidémie #5

    Grenoble Ecole de Management propose un 5ème numéro de ses points de vue d’experts sur les évolutions du monde engendrées par l’épidémie du Covid-19. Au programme cette semaine : confinement...

  • Covid-19 Weekly Update from the Experts at GEM.  Issue No.4
    Published on 20 April 2020

    Covid-19 Weekly Update from the Experts at GEM. Issue No.4

    Grenoble Ecole de Management brings to you its fourth Covid-19 issue with opinions from its Experts on the evolutions they foresee in crisis communications, culture, innovations in health, consumer behavior and customer relationships, both during...

  • Séverine Le Loarne, esiegnant chercheur à Grenoble Ecole de Management
    Published on 20 April 2020

    Telecommuting and employee autonomy

    The Covid-19 crisis has forced many employees to start telecommuting. How can companies and managers ensure a smooth transition to telecommuting? What is the essential factor for a successful transition?

  • Covid-19 : les experts de GEM décryptent l’impact de l’épidémie #4
    Published on 16 April 2020

    Covid-19 : les experts de GEM décryptent l’impact de l’épidémie #4

    Grenoble Ecole de Management propose un 4ème numéro de ses points de vue d’experts sur les évolutions du monde engendrées par l’épidémie du Covid-19. Au programme cette semaine : communication, culture, adoption des innovations dans la santé,...

  • Cybersécurité. Prévenir plutôt que guérir !
    Published on 20 April 2020

    Cybersecurity: better safe than sorry!

    As telecommuting becomes a widespread practice during this health crisis, cybersecurity grows in importance for companies. And user awareness of these issues remains the primary factor to ensure security.

  • Pourquoi n’y-a-t-il plus de papier toilette dans les magasins ?
    Published on 20 April 2020

    Why are some store shelves empty?

    Consumption patterns are affected by many factors. Recent research highlights how basic human needs can negatively influence our consumption habits.

  • Covid-19 : les experts de GEM décryptent l’impact de l’épidémie
    Published on 06 April 2020

    Covid-19 Weekly Update From GEM's Experts Issue No.3

    Grenoble Ecole de Management brings to you its third Covid-19 update, with opinions from its Experts, on the global evolutions they foresee in: labor loaning, universal basic income, cultural models, bank rescue plans and the luxury industry.

  • Published on 30 March 2020

    Covid-19 weekly update from GEM Experts. Issue No.2

    Last week, we shared opinions from 12 of our experts on the evolutions they foresee in the areas of higher education, technology, health and the environment as a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic...

  • grenoble presqu'ile
    Published on 18 February 2020

    MIT GSW 2020: an international event for disruptive entrepreneurship

    The MIT Global Startup Workshop will come to France for the first time. This international event dedicated to entrepreneurship is co-organized by Grenoble Ecole de Management and offers a unique opportunity to explore the theme of disruptive...

  • Published on 13 March 2020

    2020 MIT GSW: entrepreneurship for sustainable societies

    The MIT Global Startup Workshop (GSW) 2020 in-person event on March 23 & 24, 2020 in Grenoble, France, has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Gotteland David
    Published on 20 January 2020

    A good leader boosts a market-oriented culture

    Leadership style accounts for 16% of how well an organization creates a client-oriented culture. As it’s relatively easy to implement changes in leadership, this factor can be an effective lever to encourage a client culture.

  • Gotteland David
    Published on 20 January 2020

    Un bon leader booste une culture d’orientation marché

    « Charismatique, inspirant, stimulant et respectueux », le bon leader, orienté marché à titre individuel, servira de référent dans l’organisation et permettra de développer la culture client d’une entreprise.

  • Chaire DOS : mieux comprendre l’impact des technologies numériques sur nos vies
    Published on 13 January 2020

    Chaire DOS : mieux comprendre l’impact des technologies numériques sur nos vies

    Que changent les technologies numériques pour l’individu, les organisations et la société dans son ensemble ? Une quinzaine d’enseignants-chercheurs se penchent sur le sujet dans le cadre de la chaire Digital, Organization and Society (DOS),...

  • Finethics est un nouveau serious game immersif créé en collaboration avec des professionnels de l’entreprise et des étudiants dont le but est d'aider les futurs leaders à construire leur engagement éthique.
    Published on 13 November 2019

    An immersive new game to better anticipate ethical dilemmas

    The Kerviel, Mediator, horse meat litigations… scandals and malpractice spare no sector. Would the people involved have made the same decisions at different times in their lives? Do they agree with the decisions they made? To react better in the...

  • Finance de demain : construire l’éthique des futurs leaders, avec les entreprises
    Published on 21 October 2019

    The future of finance: training ethical leaders with the support of business

    Using a variety of tools such as the serious game Finethics, Grenoble Ecole de Management and the network Finance de demain is encouraging professionals in the finance sector to question their practices and help shape an ethical future for finance.

  • web série de sept épisodes de sept minutes sur sept entreprises aux modèles alternatifs
    Published on 24 September 2019

    Promising model for Corporate Social Responsibility

    Corporate Social Responsibility is more than a side strategy for some companies. Two recent graduates analyzed the impact and success of companies whose alternative models make CSR a fundamental part of their raison d’être.

  • Le buycott deviendrait-il le nouveau boycott des consommacteurs
    Published on 22 October 2018

    Could buycotting be the new boycotting?

    A consumer’s purchasing power is a power for change. New research highlights that buycotting (rewarding companies for good behavior by buying their products), may be an interesting alternative to the traditional boycott.

  • Daniel Ray, enseignant-chercheur à GEM, démontre comment la satisfaction client influe sur la rentabilité de l’entreprise, en calculant son « loyalty model ».
    Published on 27 September 2018

    A direct link between bonuses and customer satisfaction

    New research indicates that the interests of executives, shareholders and customers can be united by investing in customer satisfaction. In particular, it highlights that executives have a direct financial interest in supporting customer...

  • Gazi Islam, chercheur à Grenoble Ecole de Management
    Published on 27 September 2018

    Does permaculture offer an interesting alternative for human organizations?

    Permaculture is usually thought of as a farming practice. Yet knew research explores its potential to help us reorganize society. Thanks to its alternative approach to organizations, permaculture could offer us a positive solution to overcome...

  • Séverine Le Loarne
    Published on 12 July 2018

    GEM - Les Prem1ères: an incubator for female entrepreneurship

    The FERE Research Chair recently partnered with France’s leading incubator network to launch a mobile incubator aimed at supporting female entrepreneurship in rural areas. The first of its kind, this incubator offers a new approach to encourage...

  • l’état des technologies de stockage de l’énergie en France
    Published on 05 July 2018

    Energy market barometer report - Summer 2018

    This Summer 2018 edition of the Grenoble Ecole de Management Energy Market Barometer explores the opinion of French energy experts on the state of energy storage technologies in France. The experts were also asked about building energy savings and...

  • l’état des technologies de stockage de l’énergie en France
    Published on 05 July 2018

    Baromètre du Marché de l’Énergie Été 2018

    Cette édition de l’été 2018 du Baromètre du marché de l’énergie de Grenoble École de Management (GEM) explore l’avis des experts français de l’énergie sur l’état des technologies de stockage de l’énergie en France. Les experts ont également été...

  • WoMen@GEM. Plus de parité, dès la formation
    Published on 20 June 2018

    Parity Starts During Education: WoMen@GEM

    First year female students at GEM expect a salary after graduation that is 3,000 to 4,000 euros lower than their male counterparts. And this pay gap is confirmed after graduation! Overcoming gender bias in the workplace starts with overcoming bias...

  • NovActeur fiabilise son business model grâce au parcours Ulysse Live Business de GEM
    Published on 25 May 2018

    Live Business Cases: Win-Win Exercises for Companies and Students

    A live business case is the opportunity for students to work on a real-world challenge presented by a company. In addition, participating companies can benefit from the perspective of students, often with surprising results!

  • Research: the impact of performance evaluations on an individual's network.
    Published on 19 December 2017

    How to Improve Employee Annual Evaluations?

    Stressful, childish, demotivating… The words used to describe annual evaluations are rarely positive. How can we change such a perspective?

  • Séverine Le Loarne, esiegnant chercheur à Grenoble Ecole de Management
    Published on 14 December 2017

    Social Entrepreneurship: Opportunity or Altruism?

    Why are social entrepreneurs more often women? What motivates their engagement? New research bring into question old stereotypes.

  • Caroline Cuny, GEM
    Published on 14 December 2017

    Going Digital to Improve In-Store Customer Relations

    How can digital technology help companies improve a customer’s shopping experience? We look at emerging trends such as artificial intelligence, facial recognition and olfactive marketing.

  • Published on 22 September 2016

    Baromètre du Marché de l’Energie : Été 2016

    Transformation numérique dans le secteur de l’électricité : cette édition Été 2016 du Baromètre du marché de l’énergie par Grenoble Ecole de Management sonde l’opinion des experts français de l’énergie au sujet de la transformation numérique du...

  • Published on 28 June 2016

    Baromètre du Climat mondial des affaires : le niveau d’optimisme rebondit globalement

    Rapport #7 - Été 2016. Nous rapportons dans ce document la perception du climat des affaires par les responsables financiers français et la comparons aux résultats obtenus en Europe et dans le reste du monde. Nous évaluons également les sources de...

  • Published on 06 June 2016

    Les nouveaux business du célibat expliqués

    Business model et célibat sont deux notions qu’on voit rarement ensemble. Et pourtant. Revenons un instant sur la notion de business model. Teece définit un business model comme l’anticipation du top management de ce que les clients souhaitent,...

  • Published on 31 March 2016

    UK CFOs are less optimistic and more uncertain about economy now than end of 2015, global survey finds

    Economic and political uncertainty and currency risk are among major concerns, indicating that a potential Brexit is damaging confidence. UK Financial Executives have the highest understanding among Europeans of recent innovations such as the...

  • websites such as TripAdvisor have given consumers the power to impact a company's image.
    Published on 22 March 2016

    Recherche : TripAdvisor ou l’irrépressible montée du pouvoir des consommateurs

    A travers TripAdvisor, les clients ont une influence croissante sur la réputation des hôtels et ces derniers répondent de plus en plus aux avis défavorables. C'est ce que montre une étude menée entre 2002 et 2012 sur les avis des clients de 600...

  • Published on 04 February 2016

    Low oil prices cause investment in renewables, biofuels and energy efficiency technologies to decrease

    The current weak price of crude oil is having an adverse impact on the amount of investment in renewables for heat generation, biofuels, and energy efficiency technologies, according to Grenoble École de Management’s Energy Market Barometer Reading.

  •  Thibault Daudigeos is a researcher in Sustainability, Corporate Social Reponsibility, Alternative forms of Organization, Sharing economy, and new models of management at Grenoble Ecole de Management.
    Published on 26 January 2016

    Research: Corporate Social Responsibility at Odds with Global Markets?

    Corporate social responsibility (CSR) policies have received much attention for their potential to improve societal conditions while creating value for companies. However, this latest study from Grenoble Ecole de Management highlights the fact that...

  •  Thibault Daudigeos is a researcher in Sustainability, Corporate Social Reponsibility, Alternative forms of Organization, Sharing economy, and new models of management at Grenoble Ecole de Management.
    Published on 26 January 2016

    Recherche : Responsabilité sociale des entreprises globalisées, plus facile à dire qu’à faire

    Les démarches de Responsabilité sociale des entreprises (RSE) sont censées créer de la valeur. Pourtant, elles peinent à se mettre en place dans les secteurs où les chaînes de valeur sont éclatées : elles coûtent cher et ne profitent pas forcément à...

  • Published on 04 January 2016

    Recherche : Produit d’origine locale, une mention qui parle au consommateur

    La mention « origine locale » apposée sur un produit alimentaire déclenche chez le consommateur des perceptions plus positives et une intention d'achat plus forte qu'un produit d'une autre région française. Trois études portant sur 632 consommateurs...