Drug testing

Customer Service Is Dying - and Im Not Feeling So Good Myself

Have you ever called a company and been greeted with the phrase "Hold, please"? How do they know you can hold? They don't even know who you are. Maybe you can't hold; maybe you have 10 seconds of juice left on your cell phone and your hair is on fire. Then you finally get someone on the phone, only to be told, "I can't actually help you; I'm just paid to apologize, and I'm really sorry about that."

Being frustrated by a lack of customer service is nothing new. It just seems that in the last few years, companies have become more innovative when it comes to not helping you solve your problems. I recently asked a hotel employee to help me with my luggage. He told me to hold on and he would have someone look into it. I thought, "Hey, you're someone-why can't you look into it?" I realize that we are as busy as we have ever been, and that many younger people were not brought up in the traditional culture of customer service. But none of these excuses will protect your business in today's challenging economy, where customers are questioning value even with companies they have known for years.

Maybe it's time to get back to basics and make service a real priority. Sure, plenty of companies claim to offer great customer care. But raising your service standards requires more than a promise; you need to set concrete goals and establish effective procedures to meet them. Whether you own the company, handle key accounts or just accidentally encounter your customers, you'll reap huge benefits by applying the following customer service goals:

On the Phone

  • Be friendly! No one wants to send a check to people who seem to be bothered by their call.

  • Ask permission before putting a caller on hold. If a customer is greeted with "Hold, please," what the customer really hears is "Hang on! Someone much more important than you just called in."

  • Keep it professional. Smoking cigarettes, slurping a drink, and playing the drums on your desk makes callers feel like they are getting advice from a guy in a bar.

  • Make sure that callers don't have to repeat themselves. Someone who has explained a problem three times to three different people hangs up angry, whether or not the problem is solved. All the Time

  • Create a positive image to attract business. Remember that squirrels are just rats with good publicity.

  • Display compassion for people who are upset. People who don't think you care won't value your solution.

  • Be very clear when you explain a process. When customers don't know what you're talking about, they assume you don't either.

  • Do what you say you're going to do. When you don't follow through, people don't think you have forgotten. They think you don't care.

  • Know when to bring in someone else. When it becomes clear that the customer thinks you are the problem, set your ego aside and send in a fresh face.

  • Establish a simple, easy-to-implement, customer service plan. When something is really complicated, it's hard to tell if it's working.

Well, I think customer service will survive- and I feel better now that I've written this article-but it's important that we help nurse that ailing customer service to a full recovery, ensuring a healthy prognosis for today's businesses. The companies that attract and keep the best customers are usually the most effective at managing expectations and emotions. Successful companies train their people to anticipate customer needs and to solve problems before the customer knows they exist. But before you can do any of this, you have to start with the basics. If you really want customers, set customer service goals. Remember, if you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there.

Garrison Wynn is a nationally known speaker, trainer, and coach. He is the President and founder of Wynn Solutions, specializing in The Truth about Success.

About The Author

As a speaker, advisor, and entertainer, Garrison has worked with some of the world's most effective corporate leaders and salespeople, from multi-billion dollar manufacturers to top New York Stock Exchange wire houses. He has a background in manufacturing, entertainment, telecommunications and financial services. An experienced actor and former professional stand-up comedian, he has hosted PBS television specials and national radio programs.

www.wynnsolutions.com, garrison@wynnsolutions.com

limousine chicago service
In The News:

Mastering Challenging Service Situations

During the course of everyday business, many of you encounter... Read More

Cheap To Keep

You've heard it all before when it comes to stats... Read More

When the Customer Demands: Give a Discount or Lose the Order

Periodically every sales person encounters the customer who refuses to... Read More

Making The Most Of Newsletters

Newsletters can be wonderful tools for communicating with your customers... Read More

Develop Loyal Customers for a Lifetime ? part 2 (11 ? 20)

Traditional marketing strategies encourage business owners to continually grow their... Read More

Accountability

The Call Center world is an intense pressure-driven environment continually... Read More

Hit The Jackpot With Customer Complaints

Our most powerful instinct is to avoid customer complaints, but... Read More

Proofs of Delivery and Logistics: Speeding Throughput and Avoiding Pitfalls

It should be a straightforward business scenario: making sure that... Read More

A New Way To Handle Complaints, Or Is It?

What a lot of money we have been wasting on... Read More

How to Win the Hearts of Your Customers and Friends

Those of us doing business over the internet have to... Read More

What Every Manager Should Know About How to Prevent Customer Service Conflicts

There are five techniques that have been proven to be... Read More

Complaining Consumers

The salesman's job is to be well informed; extremely well... Read More

CEM Can Improve Customer Loyalty

'A 5 percent increase in customer retention increases profits by... Read More

Have You Hugged a Customer Today?

It all started a couple of weeks ago when a... Read More

The Dissatisfied Customer

We, as small business people, naturally dislike complaints from our... Read More

How Not to Get Stiffed, Improving Your Collection Procedures

Some businesses have slow paying customers or past due balances... Read More

How to Provide Instant Customer Service

Customer service is an essential component of any business. Clearly,... Read More

We Sell For Less and Our Stores Are a Mess!

What kind of image do you present when marketing your... Read More

Making the Connection: Customer Relationships That Build Your Business

Have you ever wondered why you often find a coupon... Read More

Is Your Food Establishment Clean?

Is your restaurant, bar or hotel clean? I mean really... Read More

The 7 Principles of Business Integrity

If you have integrity, nothing else matters. If you don't... Read More

Foolproof Customer Service Strategies (That Only A Fool Would Try!)

Ever notice how customer service varies from store to store?... Read More

Moments That Matter

Many years ago, I was a first year apprentice assigned... Read More

Client Service as a Competitive Advantage

As someone who has been heavily involved facilitating strategic planning... Read More

Customer Service A Chickens Way

Anyone who knows me knows my favorite fast food restaurant... Read More

high bay led lighting industrial led light Pete's produce ..