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6 ways your company can replicate the Undercover Boss experience

By Lisa Goldsberry

UndercoverBoss_Logo-4.jpgLearn how company culture can increase productivity and profitability

The Emmy-winning CBS network reality series Undercover Boss is one of the most popular shows on television. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a program where CEOs of medium and large corporations go in disguise as low-level employees at their own companies to find what’s really going on in their businesses. Along the way, they meet and are touched by the real employees who are helping (or sometimes not helping) the companies stay successful.

For the CEOs who have participated, like several of Axia Public Relations’ own clients, Undercover Boss is an ideal experiment to gain unbiased insight into their organizations. While your company may never take part in the program, you can still achieve the same fact-finding benefits with help from PR.

  1. Encourage employees to share ideas and feedback. You may think that you understand everything there is to know about all aspects of your company, but it’s the employees who are responsible for putting your vision into motion on a daily basis. As such, they are best equipped to offer suggestions on how things can improve and communicate what the customers are really saying. Give them the opportunity and resources to do so without fear of repercussions. Make sure you also ask for remedies and solutions so that feedback doesn’t turn into a gripe fest.
  1. Develop a culture of caring. This doesn’t mean you have to eat dinner with your employees and their families every night (although once in a while wouldn’t hurt), but you should create opportunities where employees and management can get to know each other a little better. When you are not afraid to show your true self, your employees will appreciate it and you will earn their trust.
  1. Find ways to make employees feel valued and appreciated. When hard work and loyalty are not recognized, employees are more likely to jump ship and may go straight to your competition. Acknowledge when someone goes the extra mile and be supportive of creative thinking. Often, a simple “thank you” from the boss can do the trick.
  1. Invest in your employees. Take the time to learn what’s involved to perform well in every position and make sure employees have the tools, information, resources, and authority to get the job done. In other words, don’t forget about employees in your quest for profitability and results.
  1. Come out from behind the desk instead of leading from a bubble. Many companies make major decisions and changes with little regard to how front-line employees – who interact with customers daily – will implement those changes. Get out in the trenches occasionally. If you make this a regular habit, employees won’t be so shocked and guarded each time and will begin to be more honest about challenges in executing strategies, and you will be able to make better decisions.
  1. Hire a PR agency to help you. It takes an all-hands-on-deck approach to ensure customer satisfaction and increased profitability. Having the right communication tools guarantees everyone is on the same page.

Let the professionals at Axia Public Relations help you craft the right messages to communicate your vision, advance your mission, and engage both employees and customers. Oh, and if you want to get your company on Undercover Boss, we can help with that, too.


We help companies get the bosses on the show.

  • We do not produce the show nor do we select the employees the show features.
  • If you have the influence in your company to help your boss get on the show, keep it a closely held secret and have the boss contact our company.

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Lisa-G-Color-SM.jpgLisa Goldsberry is a writer for Axia Public Relations with more than 15 years of public relations experience. She specializes in business and technology PR. Lisa has been with Axia since December 2013. Connect with Axia Public Relations on Twitter at @axiapr.








Topics: public relations, Undercover Boss, shared media

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