Rūta Gaudiešienė, partner of Civitta, marketing and market research expert and the initiator of the Lithuanian Business Reputation Index, believes that it is always difficult to maintain the leading position in the Lithuanian Business Reputation Index ranking, as the leaders' good initiatives are often seen as hygiene rather than extra steps. "Different business sectors have different aspects that have more or less impact on reputation. For some businesses, it is about innovation, for others, it is about the impact on the country's economic well-being, while for pharmacies, it is all about excellent customer service: well-organised work, high product quality and the ability to meet consumers' needs perfectly," says Gaudiešienė.
According to Gaudiešienė, there are several elements that are important for a reputation: being honest, purposefully creating added value and acting consistently. "Changing issues such as pandemics, war and inflation have an impact on the importance of reputational factors. One year employer image and social responsibility are more important, the next year, pricing is more important. In this context, it is worth adjusting the emphasis of communication, but it would be a big mistake to abandon our priorities and radically change initiatives. Reputations are not built in a year or in a few. Chasing seasonal issues will not help. The marathon is won by those who are consistent," says the marketing and marketing research expert.
What determines success in the public eye?
Speaking about "Camelia" pharmacy chain's repeated recognition in the eyes of the public, R. Gaudiešienė notes that the formula for the company's success is its ability to combine good pricing with high quality and warm attention to customers.
This is echoed by the manager of the pharmacy chain. "The trust of our patients is the most significant evaluation of our daily work. Professional service and sincere care for our customers are the core values we uphold during a patient's visit to the pharmacy. This public appreciation is great proof that our decisions, low price policy, and discounts for sensitive groups of society are valid and fair", says Aušra Budrikienė, Managing Director of "Camelia" chain of low-price pharmacies. She said that the last years have helped the public to reassess the importance of the pharmaceutical profession as the most accessible health professionals.
Ms Budrikienė is convinced that the daily care for patients, their health and the professional health services provided are not the only reasons why "Camelia" is recognised as the company with the best public reputation. According to the CEO, it is as important to focus on customers as it is on employees. The company conducts annual internal employee opinion surveys to assess what motivational measures are relevant to them, provides employees with the opportunity to increase their base salary with additional financial bonuses, and has an ambassador programme.
"Our ambassadors are nominated and elected by the employees themselves and are actively involved in decision-making processes, sharing their knowledge with colleagues and the public, and commenting on issues of interest to the media. We believe that if you provide good conditions for your employees, your customers will notice, so we continuously invest in training and courses to help them improve their skills. I am pleased that almost 37% of "Camelia" employees have been with us for 10 years or more, and some of them have been with us even since the company was founded. This shows that we have earned the trust not only of the public, but also of our employees," says A. Budrikienė.