Education | Customer Service Solutions, Inc. - Page 12

Find a Connection Point – Part 2: Situational Connection - 10/4/22


Last week we highlighted key topics to consider when you want to find Personal Connection Points with the customer.  Today, we’ll cover some key questions to ask to uncover information about today’s situation that you can use to establish a rapport with the customer.  This is Part 2 - Read more

Find a Connection Point – Part 1: Personal Connection - 9/27/22


Some people are born almost like a master at communication.  They know how to establish rapport with just about anybody, and they do so in a way that seems so natural and so real.  They can form relationships and be laughing with somebody they met two minutes ago like Read more

Be Proactive without being Pushy - 9/20/22


Delivering great customer service isn’t just about responding and reacting.  It’s also about being proactive.  Developing relationships involves reaching out first, not just extending our hand when somebody reaches out to us. But it’s all too clear that those of us who are in service roles prefer those roles to Read more

Be Kind to Yourself When the Customer Isn’t - 9/13/22


I was having a debrief call with one of my clients recently, and this was regarding a survey of employees who work events.  One of the survey questions asked employees for advice on how to improve the customer experience.  When the employees shared their input on the guest experience, Read more

Being the Emphatic Employee - 9/6/22


Empathy is the key quality of somebody who’s great at customer service.  We talk about it often - what it is, how to convey it, what it looks like, and how it makes the customer feel. But along with knowing how to be empathetic, we also need to know how Read more

The Good, the Really Good, and the Ugly of Customer Service - 8/30/22


Here are three helpful customer service stories.  They may not be from your specific industry, but it’s always good to learn from others. The Good… Paula submitted a ticket to the I.T. vendor.  Below the signature line in the reply she received was the following:  Please share your comments or needs Read more

A Great 2-Minute E-mail - 8/23/22


I know.  You probably get e-mails all the time from customers griping about some aspect of your organization or their experience.  You’ve got too much to do and too little time to do it.  I could not begin to tell you how many times I’ve been told by staff Read more

When They Want to Talk to Your Boss - 8/16/22


“I want to talk to your supervisor.” That’s their opening salvo.  Before you can hardly finish your greeting, the customer is asking for your boss.  This is done by a customer who has tried to get an issue resolved, and it hasn’t worked, so they want to go to somebody Read more

When Passive Voice is a Good Thing - 8/9/22


It’s all your fault, Mr. Customer! We may want to shout it from the rooftops, but other than venting and absolving ourselves of guilt, this wouldn’t help much in the grand scheme of things. We have a customer sitting in front of us or on the phone, and maybe they are Read more

They’re Stressed, So You Can… - 8/2/22


Wow!  That customer looks stressed!  Maybe it’s their body language or their expressions; they could be fidgety or talking really fast. In the past, when we offered guidance in these situations, we focused on how to navigate the conversation step-by-step - what points to cover and what points to avoid. But Read more

Learn from Schools without Attending

Posted on in Business Advice, Education Please leave a comment

Nothing like being in school and getting a report card – that moment of truth when you’ll be smiling or wondering how you’ll subtly get it in front of your parents when they’re in the best mood possible.

Well just like students get report cards, now many schools, colleges, and universities are getting them as well. These report cards are akin to Balanced Scorecards in the rest of the business world, but it’s interesting to note the unique twist that these institutions take in reporting their information. Many elementary schools’ report cards include information on student-to-teacher ratios as well as percentages of teachers who are board certified, and much of this data as well as performance data is listed versus district and state comparatives.

At the 4-year university level, they look at graduation rates, year-to-year retention rates, student loan default rates, student satisfaction scores, measures of student learning, end-of-program assessments, and job placement.

So what can you learn from these educational institutions? From the elementary schools perspective, they offer comparative information. They show how many dedicated resources they have for their students. They note qualifications/experience of their teachers. Do you measure and convey this information to your customers?

From the higher education perspective, they look at retention and loss, they gauge satisfaction, and they analyze impact on the customer. Do you track, measure, and analyze these three key pieces of information?

We all went to school to learn. Let’s take a minute as businesspeople to learn again.

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

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EF Hutton and MIT…

Posted on in Business Advice, Education Please leave a comment

When MIT talks, people listen. Okay, so that’s a bad take-off on the old EF Hutton commercials, but there is a comparison to the old EF Hutton commercials. If you remember from back in the 1980s, EF Hutton (a brokerage firm) had a series of television commercials where one person would be talking to a friend in a crowded place (like an airport, a classroom, a restaurant, a golf course, etc.), and once they stated “EF Hutton says…” everyone around would stop what they were doing and listen intently to the person talking. They wanted to hear what EF Hutton said (to see some of the old commercials, go to www.youtube.com and search on EF Hutton). But I digress…

MIT does something on a biannual basis that all companies should listen intently to and consider. They perform student satisfaction surveys (http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2010/student-satisfaction.html). While that may not be an earth-shattering revelation, keep in mind that MIT is a preeminent university. They have a fantastic reputation and brand. They could operate with the assumption of their own self-worth, but instead they ask students – those 18-21+ year olds – “How are we doing?” They ask “How can we do better?” And they ask their research partner “How do we compare to others?”

They ask because, like their students, they want to learn. And who better to learn from than your customers.

MIT asks about its impact on the student over time at the University (a true outcomes-oriented focus) in terms of the improvement in student’s analytical thinking abilities, their knowledge, their communication skills, their ability to plan/execute projects, their ability to function independently, their ability to relate to others, their self-esteem, and their ability to write.

If the student is – to some extent – both customer and product, than one of the best ways to measure outcomes is to see how that student has grown in these ways and many others over time.

MIT is outcomes-focused. What outcomes do you measure in terms of your impact on your customer?

MIT’s students talk, so MIT can listen. We should listen, too.

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


Customer Service Leads to Customer Involvement in Schools

Posted on in Business Advice, Carolinas, Education Please leave a comment

Several South Carolina schools were given "Red Carpet" awards for excellence in customer service. That’s right, high schools, middle schools, elementary, and other school-types received recognition for being "family friendly." An article (http://www2.scnow.com/scp/news/education/article/schools_win_awards_for_family-friendly_atmosphere_customer-focused_service/157334/) published yesterday noted that the winners of these awards received actual red carpets to display in their school lobbies – great form of recognition!

Schools had to describe their "family-friendly philosophies and environments, along with the methods used to promote and self-evaluate those efforts. They also were required to include copies of their school’s communication plan."

Examples of the winning schools included how one school made their library open to the community to use (particularly for internet access); another school opened its gym to community leagues/groups; another ensured it had extra coverage of phones and the front desk during the busiest hours; another increased their bilingual capabilities to match the changing mix of local residents.

It’s wonderful that schools understand and embrace the importance of customer service. The winners realize that they need to create a positive environment through their facility and their people. The examples of winning schools illustrate some key points which apply to any business including: be accessible to your customers to attract them (note the library and gym examples), make sure that you match your staffing to your workload to minimize wait times (note the front desk example), and change your service offerings and the way you do business based on your changing customer base (note the bilingual example).

Customer service is a large part of what customers consider when they’re evaluating any business – even schools.

Learn from these schools to attract customers to you, to minimize customer waits, and to make sure you’re delivering on your customers’ changing needs.

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