culture

I Think I Think is Wrong - 10/20/20


I think that’s not going to be feasible.  I think we can do that.  I think you’re on the right track.  Methinks thou dost protest too much. Please forgive the Shakespearean reference, but it seems to fit well here.  When we are talking to co-workers and customers, and we’re giving Read more

Be Slowest, and Be the Best – Chick-fil-A - 10/13/20


About one week ago, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution had an article that analyzed the results of a SeeLevel HX research engagement on the customer experience at fast food restaurants.  The results were seemingly contradictory.  The fast food chain with by far the overall best drive-thru experience was Chick-fil-A, and yet Read more

Connect During Customer Service Week - 10/6/20


It’s Customer Service Week…woohoo!  This week should be all about the customers we serve and the staff who serve them.  This should be about conveying we value other people, and – hopefully – having other people convey that they value us.  It’s a week about people – about us. This Read more

Temper the Tone of THE VOICE - 9/29/20


The television show The Voice is a singing competition.  The opening episodes of every season begin with individuals singing while judges have their backs to the singer.  The judges can’t see the singer, so they are evaluating the performer purely based on their voice. Oftentimes, when the judge turns around, Read more

Keep On Going - 9/22/20


Thomas Edison once said “Many of life’s failures are experiences by people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” You are close to success – Keep On Going. Winston Churchill once said "If you’re going through hell, keep going."  This quote has been taken Read more

Lessons Learned for COVID Era Sporting Events


Since the sports world has begun inviting fans back to their events on a limited basis, CSS has been fortunate to work on multiple events with our sports clients.  Much of our work is fan research-oriented, where before or after events, we are engaging fans to identify expectations, potential Read more

Create a Common Definition of Customer Service - 9/15/20


Peter, Paul, and Marie are co-workers. They are all customer service representatives.  When Peter thinks of good customer service, he defines it as being friendly to the customer. “And I am friendly,” Peter says.  “That’s why I don’t know why they send me to customer service training.” Paul thinks customer Read more

COVID-19 Demand Management Strategies for Customer Service Channels


We all want demand for our products or services.  This helps us to generate revenue and to provide something of value to our customers and communities.  But customer demand does not strictly relate to products and services.  Demand also relates to communications, information, issue resolution, education, and other aspects Read more

Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance? - 9/8/20


This is a quote by Edgar Bergen.  He’s one of the most famous ventriloquists of all time, but I guess he wasn’t necessarily one of the hardest workers of all time.  By sharing this quote, I am not supporting the idea that we shouldn’t work hard…or am I? We only Read more

Reach Out More for COVID-19 Customer Retention


Ever since the Coronavirus pandemic became a reality for individuals, their communities, and their countries, it became clear that people were going to be hurting…that lives were going to be changing…that the realities of the past were going to be very different from the current and near-term future realities. When Read more

Take a Football Approach to Changing Corporate Culture

Posted on in Business Advice, Sports Please leave a comment

As the NFL regular season draws to a close over the next 3 weeks, it’s a good time to get in some football analogies – particularly analogies that relate to business. Many coaches attempt to create a team culture, believing that how they work, communicate, relate, and interact on an ongoing basis impacts their on-the-field success.

We agree.

Consider these keys to creating your own corporate culture just like a successful football coach.

Target the Super Bowl

· If a healthy culture is defined as having everyone on the same page, going in the same direction. You have to define the “direction.” Leaders need to set long-term goals for the organization – a Vision of what it wants to achieve or what it wants to become. To most professional football teams, it’s the Super Bowl. Create that Vision.

Score More than the Other Guys

· Understand that getting to the Super Bowl (your Vision) requires you to accomplish certain milestones along the way. Know those milestones, those nearer-term goals for your organization. To an NFL team, they cannot get to the Super Bowl without winning games, and winning is defined simply as scoring more than your opponent. Define your organization’s milestones.

Know Who to Block

· Make sure everybody understands their individual roles. Lack of clarity for an Offensive Lineman can cause his quarterback to be sacked. Lack of clarity for a customer support person can cause an organization to lose a customer. Be clear with everyone on their individual role.

Huddle Like a Football Team

· Teams huddle to call out the play. When do you get all your individuals (or individual departments) together to discuss how you’re going to work on the next project or initiative? Everybody needs to know how their role will fit into the team picture, and they need to know the roles of others around them. Huddle with co-workers.

Get First Downs on the Way to Scores

· Don’t always through the long-bomb. Winning a game involves about 150 plays. If you keep moving forward on offense 10 yards at a time, you’ll keep progressing toward the goal line. Don’t feel like you have to do it all at once. Have a plan. Work the plan. Celebrate each first down, celebrate more on scores, and celebrate like crazy when you win.

With the right Vision, understanding of near terms goals, clarity of roles, communication, teamwork, and great execution, maybe your last celebration will be your Super Bowl!

Read our New Book – “Ask Yourself…Am I GREAT at Customer Service?” http://www.amigreatat.com/

Listen to our latest podcast episode of “Stepping Up Service” on The MESH Network at http://themesh.tv/stepping-up-service/

Interested in improving your company’s customer service? See more at our new website! http://www.cssamerica.com/


Before Getting into Social Media Customer Service, Do This

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

Why Social Media Customer Service? Because if you’re not in it, you’ll be left behind…no, that’s not credible. Because everybody wants their customer service through Twitter or Facebook…uh…no they don’t. Because in this day and age, all your customers are constantly in Social Media…well, not really.

In your personal life, I sure hope you don’t do things for the sake of doing them. You don’t quit your job to create a startup just because all your buddies are doing so. You don’t drop out of college because Gates and Jobs did so. You don’t skydive without a parachute because someone told you what “an awesome rush” it is.

When you do something significant in life or in business, do it with a purpose.

Getting into Social Media Customer Service is no different. Companies who are investing in consulting, resources, and technology to get into Social Media Customer Service typically do it for several reasons including (1) To protect their brand, (2) To reduce cost/unit of providing customer service, (3) To be more responsive, (4) To meet their Social Media-savvy customers where they’re located and/or where they’ve purchased, (5) To improve retention and sales.

You have to have a reason to enter Social Media Customer Service, because the people, process, technology, and cultural costs will be expended upfront before the benefits are realized down the road.

One aspect of Social Media Customer Service that everyone should agree on is this – get your current customer service processes, policy, and training in place and effective before you migrate them to Social Media. If your back office support functions are slow and of poor quality, Social Media will just speed up how quickly the customer realizes those shortcomings. If your people are poorly trained, Social Media creates more real-time interactions where that training is less masked by slower Q&A processes. If your policies are unclear, Social Media will facilitate the spread of misinformation more quickly.

Before diving into Social Media Customer Service, get your current customer service house in order.

Read our New Book – “Ask Yourself…Am I GREAT at Customer Service?” http://www.amigreatat.com/

Listen to our latest podcast episode of “Stepping Up Service” on The MESH Network at http://themesh.tv/stepping-up-service/

Interested in improving your company’s customer service? See more at our new website! http://www.cssamerica.com/


From Harvard’s Calculator to Your Ears…and Eyes

Posted on in Business Advice Please leave a comment

The Harvard Business School promotes its version of the “Customer Lifetime Value Calculator.” This is a method of determining the true potential financial impact of your customer to your business.

There are 5 main pieces to the impact-calculating puzzle:

· Base profit – Transactional profit

· Profit from increased purchases – Profit from multiple transactions

· Profit from price premium – Profit from willingness to pay more per transaction

· Profit from reduced operating costs – Profit from less expenditures to retain than acquire the customer

· Profit from referrals – Profit from less expenditures to get customers via referrals than marketing/advertising to acquire them

So if this is the financial “Why” of customer retention, what is the “How?” The “How” comes from 3 things:

· First, you have to have what we call a Client Relationship Development (CRD) strategy to continually “touch” and develop relationships with customers over time – even when they’re not spending a dime with you.

· Second, you need to have a Client Experience Management (CEM) strategy – where you build a service and sales experience that hits all the key hot buttons.

· Third, you need a Service Culture that creates the people, processes, attitudes, structures, communications, and general alignment of everything the organization is about…toward the customer.

Calculate your customer’s potential lifetime value, and then create the “How” strategies to tap into those dollars.

Read our New Book – “Ask Yourself…Am I GREAT at Customer Service?” http://www.amigreatat.com/

Interested in improving your company’s customer service? See more at our new website! http://www.cssamerica.com/