easy

The Passive Predicament - 4/13/21


The employee is speaking to you.  Do they have that look in the eyes like they’re hanging on your every word, like they’re processing, interpreting, and getting ready to quickly respond to your key points and questions?  Or do they have the look of somebody in the 2nd hour Read more

Regain Lost Motivation - 4/6/21


For many of us over the last 12 months, our home has also become our workplace.  Our work interaction has been 2-dimensional through the computer screen as opposed to the 3-dimensional experiences we’re used to with co-workers and customers. We are all motivated in our own unique ways.  Some are Read more

The Answer is Right, but the Service is Wrong - 3/30/21


Maggie was irate.  The gift she ordered needed to be received by the 20th of the month so she could give it to her cousin for his birthday.  It was the 19th, and Maggie couldn’t find any shipping update online, so she called the company.  The employee said “Oh!  Read more

Question Everything, but What’s the Question? - 3/23/21


The new leader joins the organization, and she decides she wants to question everything.  She wants employees to question everything.  Why have we always done it this way? Why do we continue to do it that way? Is this the best way to work? Sometimes it’s a great management Read more

The Resourceful Rep - 3/16/21


One of our clients is seeking to develop Customer Service Standards.  We’re working with them to identify those key expectations of staff that will enable the organization to deliver a consistent high-level customer experience.  One of the key attributes that this organization is seeking from its team members is Read more

Be Proactive like a Pro - 3/9/21


We constantly work with clients, encouraging them to become more proactive with customers.  Don’t just be reactive, waiting for the customer to ask questions or to complain.  Instead, go to the customer, anticipate their needs, suggest something to them. But many of us, frankly, don’t know how to be proactive.  Read more

Find One Unique Thing - 3/2/21


Many of us are not in a position to develop long-term relationships with our customers.  Our encounters are often one-time only with a customer - very brief and likely to be our only time chatting with this individual. And even though there may not be a long-term professional relationship developed, Read more

Should I Stay or Should I Go? - 2/23/21


Should I stay or should I go?  That’s not just a classic song by The Clash.  It’s also the question customers ask more and more, especially during difficult economic times. A recent study in the Charlotte Business Journal noted that 50% of North Carolina businesses are concerned with how to Read more

Optimism – A Force for Good in Customer Service - 2/16/21


Will 2021 be a better year than 2020?  I have absolutely no idea.  Maybe it would be nice to see into the future and know for certain, but I can’t and I don’t.  But as I wade further and further into this year, I can hope that the water Read more

To Assure, Ensure You Do This - 2/9/21


Vince Lombardi – famous professional football coach – became a big hit on the speaker’s circuit during his time coaching.  He applied many of his principles in football and life to business, and one of his great business quotes is:  Confidence is contagious and so is lack of confidence, Read more

Customers Want Easy, but Easy is Difficult – 1/12/21

Posted on in Customer Service Tip of the Week Please leave a comment

New employees go through days of training to learn products and services.  They have formal workshops to learn how to use their office applications, web functions, and whatever programs are specific to their department.  They test new technology, and they get quizzed on knowledge of policies.  This is hours or days or sometimes weeks of training so that the employees can do their work consistently and effectively.

Customers of our companies typically go through no training.  There are no half-day workshops to learn how to lodge a complaint or request a refund or ask a clarifying question or check on a status.

Customers are not and should not be expected to be experts in our business.  Customers want EASY – Easy to find, easy to access, easy to understand, easy to use.

But Easy is difficult.

I once worked for an administrator in a hospital, and I noted how in certain aspects of operations, we needed to simplify some processes – make it easier on employees to deliver consistently high-quality service.  The administrator responded that his peers don’t think Easy is challenging. I replied:

Making something easy is actually one of the most difficult things you can do in business.

It’s not difficult to have a new procedure or policy, a new function or feature, and just add it on top of what currently exists.  It’s not difficult to just add 5 pages at the back of the standard operations manual.  It’s not difficult to just let incremental complexity grow on a day-by-day and year-by-year basis.

What is difficult is taking a step back, seeing everything through the lens of a customer or an employee, and trying to make it as easy as possible for the employee to deliver great service, or as easy as possible for the customer to have a great experience.

If your organization wants a challenge that will benefit your customer, take on the challenge of Easy.  Find ways to make it easier on the customer to find you or your service offerings.  Make it easier for them to access the information and the solutions they need.  Make the information as easy to understand as possible.  And once they are accessing that product or service, make it as easy as possible to use.

If you need a challenge for the new year, try to make it Easy on the customer.

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Use Millennials’ Favorite Words – 10/3/17

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Okay – you got me. This tip doesn’t JUST apply to Millennials or JUST their favorite words, but I’m going to use that title as a jumping off point.

In recent research conducted by Prosper-Insights & Analytics, the 5 key terms that Millennials most frequently use to describe excellent customer service are: Helpful, Quick, Returns, Easy, (Fix/Resolve) Problems.

Essentially this is how Millennials define excellent customer service. There are 2 ways we’re going to suggest you use this information.

Self-Analysis
The first is self-analysis (for you or your organization):

  • Are you helpful? Yes, you may provide facts or information, but do you help the customer address their goal or need? This is second level customer service – going beyond the response you provide to the result the customer desires.
  • Is your service quick? Do you respond to the e-mails, calls, chats, needs, and issues expeditiously, and do you ask for the customer’s timeframes so that you know how they define “Quick?”
  • How do you handle returns? Is it as simple for them to return as to buy; are the employee attitudes as pleasant when customers return and want the refund as they are when customers buy and make the payment?
  • Do you make it easy for them to do business with you? For them to understand their responsibilities v. the company’s? For the customer to communicate with you?
  • Finally, what do you do when things go wrong? How are you at fixing/resolving problems? With many customers, your response to the issue tells them far more about your level of customer service than your response to the sale.

 
Phrasing with Customers
The second way we suggest that you use this information is to incorporate it into your daily phrasing with customers – particularly the words helpful, quick, easy. “I want to help you. We want to make this a quick and easy process for you. How else can I help? What’s the easiest way to keep in touch with you?”

When customers tell you what’s important, use that information to improve. And use those words in your customer conversations.

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For Some, It’s All About This – 1/20/15 TOW

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We often say that companies need to make it “Easy” on the customer to do business. It needs to be easy to schedule a doctor’s appointment. It needs to be easy to renew season tickets. It’s got to be easy to reserve a park shelter. We’ve got to make it easy for parents to register their children for school.

By let’s look at “Easy” as it relates to logistics. We did a brief research study for a grocery chain many years ago, and we asked where customers shopped and why. The #1 reason why people shopped at a particular grocery store was its proximity to their home. It was all about…convenience.

You have to make it convenient for the customer to get to your products/services, your policies/procedures, your processes, and people.

How close – literally – are you to your customers? Can those customers who prefer or need the face-to-face get to you quickly?

How about those that prefer the phone? Can they call one basic number as the window to access all your services, all the answers to their questions? How accessible is the number to the average first-time customer?

Think about those loving the web and smart phones for communication – is contact with your organization available at a click or a voice command? Is your business (again) literally at their fingertips?

Before working to make your organization incredibly easy to deal with once the customer gets to you, first make yourself convenient to them.

For Some, it’s All About Convenience.

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