employee morale

Challenges Create Opportunity, People Create Change - 4/20/21


There are so many great things that have been said over the years about overcoming challenges, pushing aside the roadblocks of life, dealing with difficulties.  And these are important points of discussion because challenges are all around us.  There are challenges with our personal health or in our personal Read more

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

Make Service a Habit

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

You need to do it. You want to do it. Do it.

In life, there are three levels of action. First, you do things because you need to do them. Next, you do things because you want to do them. Lastly, you just do things – they’re a habit.

When most organizations want to get a culture focused on customer service, one way they try to drive that culture home is to put some points of accountability in place. Typically it’s something in a performance evaluation or a customer survey that rates how effectively an employee is providing service. This gets staff to serve in a certain manner because they NEED to in order to get a rating or not get “dinged” on their evaluation.

Many organizations create incentives to drive customer-oriented service behaviors. They do this so that staff will WANT to provide good customer service. Employers also look to hire staff with an orientation that is very customer-focused. They look to hire employees who naturally WANT to help others.

But beyond the need-based and want-based efforts to deliver good service, companies need to strive for the third level of service delivery – it needs to become a habit. It becomes a habit when staff intuitively act to serve. They naturally act in a way that’s focused on and interested in the customer. They are not making mental decisions on whether or not to serve because they need to or want to; they serve because it’s just how they act; it’s a habit.

Think about your habits – good or bad. Where did they come from? They probably came from the role models you had, they came from your practicing something repeatedly, they came from your doing something the same way over a long period of time, they came from doing something simple rather than complex, and they were reinforced from the results you received.

When you’re attempting to foster a culture of service, don’t just convince staff they need to serve or try to make them want to serve. Help them to make it a habit.

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


If we were only treated like our pets…

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

I went to the veterinarian last week to take in our family cat – the one that had been in a fight with another cat and didn’t exactly win. Squeaky was on the mend, but the vet wanted to make sure that the antibiotics had worked and that her temperature was down.

When we walked into SouthPark Animal Hospital in Charlotte, NC, the two front desk staff greeted our cat like she was their long lost sister. “Hi, Squeaky!” they exclaimed. “We’re so happy to see you! How are you feeling? Are you better?!” Their love of cats (or at least in our mind, OUR cat) was evident. They took care of her, brought her back to the exam room to take her temperature, and when they brought her back out to the lobby, the vet assistant told my daughter and I that “We love Squeaky!”

Wow! It’s just a cat…isn’t it? Not to them…and not to us, either.

Let’s think about how this relates to us human beings. How often do you go into any other business and get a reception like this? How often do people’s faces light up, they smile, their voices convey enthusiasm at the sight of you? How often do they repeat your name? How often do they tell you how much they love (or at least enjoy) caring for you? How often do they enthusiastically give you the impression that you’re the most important person in the world at that moment?

What a great customer service world it would be if businesses conveyed how much they cared about us the way the staff at SouthPark Animal Hospital convey that they care about our pets!

If a business can muster this enthusiasm for Squeaky, let’s try to muster something similar for our 2-legged customers.

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


Take the Pulse

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

Organizations often have to deal with internal rumors. Maybe it’s the staff that think they’ve heard about the possibility of a leadership change or a facility relocation or a reorganization or layoffs or changes in wages or benefits.

Rumors are typically negative, often foreshadowing something that could happen down the road that people don’t want to happen. The negativity of these rumors can start to eat away at the framework of an organization’s culture, just like thousands of tiny termites eating away at the foundation of a home.

If these rumors are not dealt with, then their negative impact will grow and grow and grow to the point that the culture suffers, the productivity suffers, the service suffers, the internal relationships and the work environment suffer, and – in the end – the customer will suffer, too.

To make sure that rumors are identified quickly and acted on, and to make sure that leadership has a strong ongoing understanding about what’s going on at the staff level, one thing organizations can do is to implement an ongoing system of taking the employee pulse. These are typically very short but very frequent and ongoing surveys that focus on several key questions that are high-level indicators of employee satisfaction and morale.

If leaders want to make sure that they have some good, objective data telling them the direction of their employees’ satisfaction and morale, they need to proactively seek it on an ongoing basis (at least monthly in most organizations).

To make sure that the foundation and core of your organization are not slowly but surely being eaten away by rumors and a negative internal work environment, make sure you’re getting frequent and objective feedback from your employees.

Continually take the pulse of your people.

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