What makes a company great, makes it stand out head and shoulders above the rest; has not only loyal but repeat customers who go back time and time again?
Is it the size of the company – bigger is always better?
Is it the amount of profits they make – well they must be good if they are making all that money – right?
Is it maybe they are the only business which has a particular item – hardly.
Or is their marketing excelling, taking full advantage of ALL media including online, social, TV and broadsheets as well as radio and tabloids.
What is their secret?
The truth is there is no secret, it all boils down to one thing – no matter size, profits, products, services or marketing plan, if you don’t have this one thing you may as well shut up shop and go home – and that one thing is Customer Service.
Don’t get me wrong the other things do help in some small way but Customer Service is King.
It should be natural and not forced. How annoying did “Have a nice day” become? It was novel at first but…
So how do you achieve great Customer Service?
Try following these dos and don’ts as guidelines:-
Do smile when talking – seems strange I know but it works, try it and see the difference.
Do listen and hear what your Customer is saying but don’t sit in silence use audible nods and empathise then repeat to show you have been listening using expressions like “If I have heard you correctly… ,” or “If I may repeat to make sure I have understood you… ” Goes a long way and also informs customer that you have been listening.
Never use the expressions “You need to… ,” or “You have to… ” They neither have to nor need to do anything.
Do ask permission “Is it OK if I take some details?” “May I have your name?” “Can I take a message?” “Are you happy to give me…?”
Don’t swear, be rude or argue back, tempting as it maybe, wait till your are of the call/ customer has gone/can’t see you, if you must vent/rant.
Don’t take it home, and never carry it over to the next customer.
Do treat each customer individually and although you may think that they are Bat Crap Crazy/stupid or what they are contacting you about is trivial, always remember to them it is important.
Don’t take it personally, they are just wanting to rant at somebody and don’t know you, all they want is for someone to take responsibility, not pass them from pillar to post and to listen.
And finally always end on a positive note, even if it’s a simple thanks for your call.
Follow these guidelines and you will notice a difference, not just in your customers but also in your staff who will be happier in their work and less stressed and if they are less stressed then they are willing to go that extra mile.