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City of Moscow is a Service Leader

Many people do not love their government. Too much bureaucracy, lack of speed, poor hours and often unfriendly people. Most large cities in the US are poorly managed. Most lack customer service. More concerned about politics than their customers, taxpayers and citizens. This is true in most large cities in the world. Moscow is light years ahead of New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Minneapolis. In the US large cities crime is everywhere. They celebrate the homeless and taxes are high. Customer service is not something they practice or understand

My partner in Moscow, Maksim Nediakin has been working with government leaders in Moscow who really understand the Service Strategy with his focus on Sincere Service. The results are incredible. I would like to kidnap the leadership and bring them to the US to turn our large cities around. Everyone should benchmark yourself against The City of Moscow.

Watch the Videos from Moscow IV Social Forum City of Moscow

The first step in creating a service culture is Strategy, the second is leadership and the third are the tools. Click here

Mayor, Sergey Sobyanin

The Mayor, Sergey Sobyanin and Anastasia Rakova, Deputy Mayor are leading the charge from the elected leaders.  It has to come from the top. They just held their IV Social Innovations Forum for over 1000 people. Plus it was online. Free and open to everyone. I was a guest speaker. Here is a link for my presentation. They started with their My Documents Moscow Multifunctional Centers. They understand the future of Moscow is creating a Society that is customer-driven where its voters, citizens and customers fall in LOVE with the City. They walk the talk. See my replay of the panel discussion here.

Anastasia Rakova, Deputy Mayor

I spent 2 days visiting their Multifunctional Centers which handle over 270 documents and have 130 locations throughout Moscow.

Let me describe the things I saw that are amazing. I know of no government operation or private sector business that can match them. Everyone reading this newsletter should consider copying what Moscow is doing. These are the principles Mayor Sergey Sobyanin is driving in Russian

  1. Hours are super friendly   Most centers are open from 8 AM- 8 PM. In their flagship locations, the hours are 10 AM – 10 PM. When asked how they came up with these hours they asked their customers, the citizens to give them the hours they wanted. If you listen to your customers and give them what they want that is a key to success.
  2. They are in locations close and convenient to the customers. Many are in large shopping centers. In Bloomington Minnesota where I live they just closed the government office and moved it to another city and to downtown Minneapolis 12 miles away. Bloomington is the 4th largest city in Minnesota. The location in Bloomington only did a tiny fraction of what the Multifunctional Centers in Moscow did and was only open Monday to Friday from 8:00 – 4:30 PM. Because of COVID, they required an appointment.
  3. The locations are clean, colorful and welcoming.
  4. Everyone smiles and are friendly, For the last 30 years, I have complained about the lack of smiles and warmth in Moscow. Mayor Sergey Sobyanin wants everyone to smile. Driven from the top and it’s working.
  5. Clean bathrooms. I always check out bathrooms. It tells me if they really care about their employees and customers. Several years ago when I visited the IRS Corporate Headquarters in Mexico they had no toilet paper and no toilet seats.
  6. Speed. Most customers today what to get in and out fast. In Moscow, the average wait time is only a few minutes. They use technology to also speed the process. If Bloomington the licensee bureau had probably 4 windows for employees, long lines and they could only do a few limited things Returning with more documents was often required, These centers in Moscow were huge with over 50 windows at each location.
  7. Most have a food court where you can buy food and soft drinks.
  8. Service Recovery. If you wait more than 15 minutes they bring you a cup of coffee.
  9. Dress and physical appearance of employees. I believe most employees in the US dress poorly, They do not look sharp nor attractive. The multifunctional centers have specific clothes and colors they wear. Apple could learn a lot from Moscow.
  10. Everything in Moscow requires documents and the multifunctional centers bring it under one roof with talented employees. You can get your passports there. In the Twin Cities with over 3 million people, there are about 5 locations. You have to bring your passport photos. I got 6 for only 350 Rubles or about $4.80 to get 6 photos at most retail stores in the US would be $20.
  11. Everything is FREE except for the tax. No charge for almost everything they do and have. If there is a tax it is a fraction of what you would have to pay in the US.
  12. You can get your marriage documents for free and if you want you can get married there for another 350 Rubles They have a very nice layout for this. Each month each location processes several thousand marriage documents.
  13. Employees are empowered to find solutions to solve problems. Never happens in the US where government employees are rule and process-driven. They have thousands of cases where employees did remarkable things to help customers. All encouraged and celebrated by top Management.

I then visited their Poly Clinics which is the future of Moscow. Superior healthcare is a major initiative of the Mayor, Sergey Sobyanin, and Deputy Mayor, Anastasia Rakova There are minutes away from where people live. Most can walk to one. Everything is free.

The new Poly Clinic I visited was bright and colorful. Designed for children under 18. Friendly employees.  You can get a COVID test there and the vaccines. In the US when you go to virtually any healthcare clinic the first question they ask is what is your birthday. NO hi, hello, good morning etc. I also interviewed patients/customers. One lady had her 8-year-old and she said healthcare was good in Los Angeles but every time you saw a doctor it was $200 and you had to schedule it a week out. Bathrooms were clean, Picture of animals on the walls for children. Modern equipment. They have 130 locations in Moscow.