World of Customer Service

Customers Appreciate Your Kindness - 7/7/20


The 3rd grade teacher had a phrase she used with her students. She wanted them to be “kind-hearted.” It was a phrase she used over and over again; no matter what she taught, this was an overriding emphasis on how she would communicate with students and how she expected Read more

6 Common Sense Responses to Customer Service Encounters - 6/30/20


I’ve run into this personally and professionally, and it drives me batty! Sometimes there’s a lack of common sense in the customer service provided by companies. And often that lack of common sense is due to the preference of a business to provide service in a certain method, to Read more

Caring for Co-workers through COVID - 6/23/20


A recent Buffer.com study asked employees who are working remotely due to COVID-19, what was their greatest struggle. While there were many different responses, the Top 2 totaled 40% of the struggles identified - Loneliness and Collaboration/Effective Communication. When you hear something like this - that individuals working remotely are Read more

React, Reflect, Respond - 6/16/20


Sometimes you can’t help it. You gasp. You get upset. You get angry. You have this look of shock on your face. You say something defensive. You react. I love people who are in customer service roles. These are the folks that people say things to in the business world Read more

Serving the Technology-challenged Customer - 6/9/20


The IT helpdesk representative was on a call with a customer, and in trying to troubleshoot an issue, the employee said, “Let’s start by opening Windows.” The customer said “OK,” and there were 2 minutes of silence. The employee twice asked, “Are you still there?” with no response. Finally, Read more

Address the 4 P’s for a Customer-friendly COVID-19 Walk-in Experience


This is not about what is medically most effective – please see the CDC for those guidelines.  This is about how to help your customers have a great experience as an onsite visitor at your facility or storefront.  For a comprehensive approach to a customer-friendly COVID-19 experience, address the Read more

The Deeper Reason to Transform the Customer Experience - 6/2/20


Why are government offices putting up plexiglass between their staff and their customers?  Why is restaurant takeout being done in such a way that is contactless and yet still fosters engagement between the employee and customer?  Why have so many traditionally onsite businesses converted to delivery businesses? The answer is Read more

Motivating Yourself when Working Remotely - 5/26/20


For any of us who are working remotely, we are finding ourselves more and more having to be self-motivated. And while many people are naturally self-motivated, others need to have that manager who gives us the encouragement. Many of us need to have that ongoing informal dialogue with co-workers Read more

Defining Organizational Agility in a Time of Uncertainty


You may have heard references in management theory over the many decades about the importance of a business being an “Agile” organization, but oftentimes that is a word thrown out in generalities to illustrate vague points about how organizations should be managed and make decisions.  In this time of Read more

Change Management – Facts about Past Decisions Reduce Fear about Future Decisions


Change can result in fear.  Particularly where change is thrust upon someone very suddenly, it can create shock or disbelief.  Sometimes that change is not something an organization can plan for; it therefore cannot adequately prepare its employees for what’s ahead...at least initially. In this COVID world, Change Management is Read more

Higher Ed – All About Customer Service for Student Success?

Posted on in Business Advice, Education, World of Customer Service Please leave a comment

blog-10-5-16I was presenting results of mystery shopping research years ago to a Higher Ed client.  There were about 150 people in the room, and in the middle of the presentation, two professors stood up on opposite sides of the auditorium and starting yelling at each other.  They were arguing over whether students should be viewed as customers.

Without rehashing the details of that conversation 10+ years ago, let’s juxtapose that visual to the visual of Universities looking at customer service as a key to Student Success.

The transition is starting to happen – even in Higher Ed.

In the article Customer Service May Be A Key Ingredient To Increasing Successes And College Rankings Without Increasing Costs, the author highlights all the many initiatives that colleges and universities have underway to maximize student retention, graduation, and other measures of Student Success.

She states “Many schools are creating infrastructures that consider its students as customers; it wants its students to feel that the University is working for them rather than against them. This manifests itself in how students are treated in all aspects of their interactions with their university. It includes attention to course scheduling, ease of registering for courses, early provision of financial aid packages, etc. They want to make sure that students have a good experience.

She offers as an example “Too often, classes are scheduled for the convenience of the faculty rather than the student resulting in most courses being scheduled between 10 and 4 Monday through Thursday resulting in conflicts for students when many of their classes are scheduled at the same time.

The author highlights a University that has hired an executive to oversee the student experience strategy and to develop metrics to gauge performance.

Just as with any organization/business, it’s not all about the Education or the Price that keeps the student in school or facilitates their graduation.  Sometimes it’s conveying to the student that they’re valued, and customer service in the development of organizational strategies and the 1-on-1 Moments of Truth where those strategies are implemented can be the difference between a student feeling valued or looking elsewhere.

Use customer service strategies and techniques to show you value the student.

Would you like to learn about how CSS helps Education-industry organizations succeed?  Visit http://cssamerica.com/education-industry/


Government Opinions Driven by Bad Customer Service

Posted on in Business Advice, Government, World of Customer Service Please leave a comment

blog-10-3-16Have you ever had an issue with your water bill?  How about the appraised value of your home?  Concerned you’re overtaxed?  Did the building inspector fail to show up as planned?  Did the City leave your yard in a mess after digging up a water line?

These are all negative situations with local governments, but they don’t have to be entirely negative experiences.  There are 350 million people in the U.S., and local governments interact with all of them, so there are going to be issues, but often opinions of the government are not formed based on the issue itself.  Opinions are largely formed based on the employee’s reaction to the complaint.

In the article Water bills: City Council ‘displeased’ with customer service, numerous complaints about customer service at the City are noted.  However, although the situations dealt with unexpectedly high water bills, the complaints that rose to the level of City Council were about the City’s handling of the issue.

Customers complained that their issues were “ignored and brushed off by city employees” and “employees have (had) a short temper.”  And one Councilman noted “The thing about customer service is, if you have one bad experience, that’s what gets out.”

Unfortunately for local governments, their reputation for serving the community isn’t determined similar to many private sector businesses who try to “delight” the customers or create the “WOW” experience.

Reputation is created in the responses when questions and issues arise.

What is your organization’s response plan? How do you deal with the irate customer or the complaint?  How are staff trained, and what tools are they given to rectify the situation?

Don’t just focus on the creating the WOW.  Create a plan and an organizational personality that shines greatest when the complaints come flooding in.

Interested in learning how CSS supports local government customer service?  See more at:  http://cssamerica.com/government

 


Find Assets that Build Fan Affinity

Posted on in Business Advice, Sports, World of Customer Service Please leave a comment

blog-9-30-16What do football fans care about other than winning?  Lots.  Some care about having a kid-friendly environment, some care about being treated special – that customer care, and some care about food!

To some it’s the halftime show and to others it’s knowing the direction of the team – hopefully a positive direction.

So it’s important to highlight an organization like the University of Kentucky as noted in the article UK football season ticket holders tour practice facility.   They didn’t get to tour the Chancellor’s office or take home any championship trophies; it was JUST a practice facility.

But to some fans, it was something special, unique for them, something that shows the direction of the team, something that proves a future investment, something that tightens that relationship with the program.

So what are your organization’s assets?  What are those events, activities, facilities, or awards that could be leveraged to build relationships and make the renewal process flow easier?

You can’t control what happens on the field, but you can control much of what else drives relationship and renewals with STHs.

Find your organization’s assets, and use them to make fans feel special.

Want more ideas?  See what CSS can do for Sports Organizations at:  http://cssamerica.com/sports 


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