Over the weekend, I had a very bad customer experience with a very large retail company. This was not the first time. In fact, I had grown accustomed to the bad service. In some way, I have accepted it in exchange for their low prices. This experience caused me to put on my customer service hat even as I waited in line for service. After fifteen minutes of waiting, I was not upset. Instead, I was inspired to offer some advice to the manager in the hopes of preventing future customer service failures.
My advice was simple: “Get back to the basics.” So often, we outsmart ourselves in an effort to be innovative or on the cutting edge of industry. As it relates to customer service, I am all for innovation, growth, and change. However, this should not erode the foundation of quality service. I often hear a local radio advertisement for a home improvement company in which the owner says, “We shall do quality work; at a profit if we can, at a loss if we must, but always quality work.”
In customer service, I believe there are six basic requirements that must be met with each interaction. When these are met, customers will not merely be satisfied, but they will also be delighted. Together, these form the cornerstone to a successful customer service strategy.
- Know your product
- Know your customer
- Be accessible
- Resolve problems quickly and accurately
- Solicit (and implement) feedback
- Serve with empathy
Yeah, I know, this isn’t rocket science. That is exactly the point. While the method of customer service has changed over the years, the message is still the same. It doesn’t take data, charts and in-depth surveys to give customers our reasonable service. It takes desire!
Sean is a Contact Center manager with over 13 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" award for Small to Medium-Sized Centers.
Follow on Twitter @SeanBHawkins