What Does It Take To Deliver Great Customer Service?

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Regardless of the sector of business or niche, one of its key pillars is its customer service. No matter how good the product is, if the customer service component is broken, the business will ultimately be hindered. The following contributed post is entitled, What Does It Take To Deliver Great Customer Service?

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Image – CC0 Licence

It is certainly one of the fine arts of getting a business to transcend to the next level. While there are numerous aspects of a company that needs fine-tuning on a near-constant basis of the major issue that any business needs to overcome is improving on that relationship between them and the customer. As the golden rule, customer service is vital. This means that we have to ensure that our business delivers it in spades, but what does it really take to deliver great customer service?

Keeping Behind The Scenes Well Oiled

The front of house services cannot function unless the people behind the scenes are operating at 110%. This means that come out regardless of the business you have, you must think about everything that goes on behind the front line so that the people that have the duty of dealing with customers face to face can have the ability to forge that important relationship. This means utilizing one very simple component: technology. Whether it is restaurant accounting software for your small eatery, or it’s is organizational software so that everybody knows what’s going on at any one time, as well as new changes, keep everything running smoothly behind the scenes makes it easier for the people at the front to do their jobs properly. It’s not a case that the people on the front line rely on those behind the scenes, but it’s about providing a symbiotic relationship between the two. You have to remember that the bigger picture is the important thing especially when it comes to delivering customer service. With something like a restaurant the premise is simple, you deliver food to the customer that tastes great alongside impeccable service. These things as simple to explain, but in order to ensure that everything is running like clockwork, there are so many different components to get right.

Having The Passion To Deliver Customer Service

There’s a major disparity between the millennial generation and the baby boomers. While this is not the place to get into major quibbles about either generation, it appears that the younger generations that have been raised on social media have to work that little bit harder on face to face communication and soft skills. Having that passion in a business and striving to deliver amazing customer service is the bedrock of any successful company. Customer service is about going the extra mile for them, but when we look at the skills our employees have, we’ve got to make sure that they know the basics before they can build upon those. Something like soft skills and establishing that rapport with a customer can be difficult to implement, but some tips and tricks can help, such as open-ended questions. It’s these things that our workers need to know because when an employee develops this rapport with the customer, the relationship will soon follow, and then we make a great impact on the customer. As such, when we see an employee delivering excellent customer service, even when we are the customer, we will remember this. These days, you provide feedback forms, but we remember the person more than anything, and maybe they did something for us that day to make our experience more pleasurable, or even easier. And we can see that those people have the passion, not just to deliver customer service, but it’s a part of who they are. That doesn’t mean that we need to hire exclusively people that can have a passion for customer service, but for those people who want to do well and have the skills of building a rapport, they are like gold dust.

Providing Morale In The Ranks

The focus is on the customer for her, but we have to remember about the people that are providing this service. We have to keep the morale up, and in one respect, we need to treat our employees like our customers. Giving them the respect that they need, listening to the problems they have, and being genuine in our support for their development. As customers need to see the journey that we go through, we have to remember that our employees can have much more of an insight into what we do, and this can easily filter back to customers. For example, if an employee is unhappy, we can see it plastered all over their faces, and the service they will deliver will naturally be subpar, even if they phone in the performance. This will make us think, as the customer, what is the problem here? Is it to do with them, or is it a much wider, more endemic issue? This is why we have to ensure our employees are happy, and morale is up. It’s about creating that environment which belies a dynamic and thriving workplace. It’s a very difficult thing to implement, but if we start to work on morale, by imbuing the company culture with something more than a strict hierarchy where the people at the very bottom don’t feel supported everybody can feel the benefit. It’s not enough to tell them to put a smile on for the sake of the customer, because this is fake. But at the same time, if we don’t give our employees reason to smile anyway, we can’t be surprised if we have complaints from customers.

Encourage Employees To Have Awareness Of Their Language

On the most basic level, soft skills work wonders at building a report that we’ve also got to think about how our employees present themselves. It isn’t just about the clothes, please to do with how they stand, the intonations they use, as well as the body language, all in conjunction with the words that come out of their mouths. Having employees develop an awareness of how they are in one respect, productive, but in another way, it could be counterproductive because they are constantly watching themselves. We don’t want our employees to feel that they are being marked for grammar and poise all the time. At the same time, we need them just to have some sort of awareness of what they do that inspires a certain adverse reaction. Body language is an essential thing, but when we have employees speaking to others over the telephone, we might think that it’s not so important. But body language does have a lot of sway, especially in terms of how we communicate. There have been plenty of resources over the years that highlight just how you stand can impact your vocal strengths. Something like the Alexander technique, which, in essence, is a series of stretches, can have a great impact on how somebody performs. And when we start to get into these things, we can realize just how much of an impact we can have on a conversation, by saying it in a certain direction. Naturally, we cannot afford to send all employees on a mini drama course to become aware of their body, but by asking them to get a better understanding of the words they use, the posture a present, and how they sound, these things will all work towards a more self-assured employee.

Document!

If we document times when we interacted with a customer effectively, we can use these moments as benchmarks. Documenting interactions that we have with customers gives us the opportunity to build on our rapport with them and also understand where we may have fallen flat. Going back to the soft skills it’s about those subtle movements that we can undergo within the course of a conversation, vocally, physically, and even in terms of the subtext. Ultimately, we’ve got to work at selling something to a customer, that the customer is so sorry now that they don’t appreciate the hard sell. Instead, taking the counseling approach where we offer to help and provide a resolution for their problem makes it a more subtle approach to selling. And when we start to document the approaches that work in the ones that don’t, we are investing time into research and development so we can improve our business across the board.

A business will always be judged on the prowess of its customer service. And delivering a great experience to a customer is most definitely a fine art. When we start to look at each individual component, we can be here until the cows come home. But we have to think about giving the customer the experience that they deserve. You can look at your marketing, your products, your employees, and how they all work together, but when we deliver great customer service, we can sell ice to an Eskimo. Because customer service is the pinnacle of any great business, we have to invest more time into delivering a more effective strategy. And while we can entice people in with flashy gimmicks, when they walk away, they will remember how they felt. As such, delivering great customer service is something that we need to delve deep into. It will be the savior of the company.

Author: anwaryusef

Anwar Y. Dunbar is a Regulatory Scientist. Being a naturally curious person, he is also a student of all things. He earned his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Michigan and his Bachelor’s Degree in General Biology from Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU). Prior to starting the Big Words Blog Site, Anwar published and contributed to numerous research articles in competitive scientific journals reporting on his research from graduate school and postdoctoral years. After falling in love with writing, he contributed to the now defunct Examiner.com, and the Edvocate where he regularly wrote about: Education-related stories/topics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Financial Literacy; as well as conducted interviews with notable individuals such as actor and author Hill Harper. Having many influences, one of his most notable heroes is author, intellectual and speaker, Malcolm Gladwell, author of books including Outliers and David and Goliath. Anwar has his hands in many, many activities. In addition to writing, Anwar actively mentors youth, works to spread awareness of STEM careers, serves on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the David M. Brown Arlington Planetarium, serves as Treasurer for the JCSU Washington, DC Alumni Chapter, and is active in the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace Ministry at the Alfred Street Baptist Church. He also tutors in the subjects of biology, chemistry and physics. Along with his multi-talented older brother Amahl Dunbar (designer of the Big Words logos, inventor and a plethora of other things), Anwar is a “Fanboy” and really enjoys Science-Fiction and Superhero movies including but not restricted to Captain America Civil War, Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Prometheus. He is a proud native of Buffalo, NY.