Providing service to customers is not as hard as some make it seem. It does take diligence and lots of effort to do it exceptionally well. In its simplest form, it is about treating customers with courtesy and respect. Unfortunately, in the business world we often lose sight of that.
When doing business leads to unsatisfied customers, it is time to reevaluate how business is done. Companies are competing for the same customer, and if all things are equal, customer service is usually a deciding factor for the consumer.
How can you as a contact center leader help your agents to be successful in providing “amazing” service above and beyond?
Exceptional service allows agents to offer immediate solutions without getting bogged down in processes or policy. This leads to happy, loyal customers. In turn, your contact center will see an improvement with CSAT. Removing barriers that prevent exceptional customer service will lead to a more engaged service center. I make it practice of regularly reviewing processes, policies and procedures impacting our customers and agents. As business needs change, policies should be reviewed and updated if necessary.
I’ve never met an agent who enjoys denying customer requests. On the contrary, they have a desire to satisfy them. Team members have often requested that they be allowed to offer a good will credit to customers. This request was due to their willingness go beyond good service to amazing service. They knew that random acts of kindness made customers happy.
What I learned is it empowered them and made them feel a part of the decision-making process. Upon implementation, we were able to see how this directly impacted customer and agent satisfaction.
I’ve always treated my team as customers. In my opinion, showing them what great service looks like is more impactful than telling them. When they see it alive in you, they will emulate it amongst one another and customers. Leadership must be committed to improving and should regularly attend training, seminars and conferences.
Front line supervisors, leads and managers are a great source for ideas. Allowing them freedom to develop CX initiatives will ensure they are customer focused and invested in organizational goals. I recommend that all leadership review customer feedback and CSAT performance as a team. Some of the benefits in doing so is everyone is aware of department/team performance, problems can be identified, and new ideas can be presented to the group.
Below are 4 simple and immediate steps you as a leader can implement on your journey to customer service excellence.
- Empower agents- accept feedback, include in decision-making process
- Be transparent- honest and effective communication (internally & externally)
- Be accessible- provide support in multiple channels, expand support hours
- Be attentive- your own active listening allows agents to better assist customer and anticipate future needs
Sean is a Customer Experience, Contact Center and Help desk manager with over 12 years of experience. He has a terrific pulse on incorporating innovation into the contact center. He's implemented social, outsourcing partners, new technology, and new products, while maintaining an award-winning contact center.
His contact center is a past winner of the ICMI "Global Call Center of the Year" for Small to Medium-Sized Centers. In addition, he was named one of of ICMI's Top 50 Contact Center Thought Leaders on Twitter. Follow on Twitter @SeanBHawkins or connect on LinkedIn.