attitude | Customer Service Solutions, Inc.

The New Burger Experience - 7/16/24


Floyd loves a good hamburger. Any chance he gets to try a new spin on an old standby, he takes it. Recently, a burger joint opened near his house, and Floyd was very excited! It was owned by and named for a world-renowned chef, so it had to be Read more

Boost Customer Happiness - 7/9/24


There’s a cooking show that a friend of mine watches, and the premise is all about reverse engineering food.  They may take a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, analyze it, and determine the ingredients just by tasting it.  Then they figure out a recipe.  The cook will try to make Read more

Brainstorm to Better Yourself - 7/2/24


I’ve led enough sessions with clients on continuous improvement topics to have solid experience on how to lead ideation exercises, brainstorming to develop new ideas.  Oftentimes these sessions start with the right question; the first answers may not be the ultimate solution, but they can serve as a jumping Read more

The Power of the Pause - 6/25/24


When I’m facilitating a meeting, and it feels like it’s going off-track or the discussion is going a little longer than it should, I may say something like “let me pause the conversation so that…” or “let’s pause just for a minute and consider…” I don’t like the word STOP. Read more

Handle Interruptions Heroically - 6/18/24


In the middle of a project, Jimbo, the customer service team member, had to stop what he was doing because he received an e-mail from a customer complaining about their experience at a recent event. Later that day, Jimbo was asked by his boss to put everything on hold for Read more

From Employees to Teammates: The Shift - 6/11/24


Be a great teammate. Be a good team player. We’re all part of the team. We’re no longer employees, we’re team members! The phrase “Team” is used in describing co-workers so much more than it was used years ago.  Then, we would be talking about employees, talking about staff, talking Read more

Nurture New Relationships - 6/4/24


Freddie was a new business owner in town.  He was launching a franchise, had acquired some funding from a local bank, and was in search of staff who cared about customer service. All the while, he was in the process of renovating a storefront for his business, so he was Read more

There’s Positivity in Patience - 5/28/24


The employee at the financial services firm was working with a new client on a relatively simple loan.  The documentation was about as clear as it could get to the employee, but the customer had lots of questions.  The employee calmly, clearly, and specifically answered each question.  The meeting Read more

The Goal – A Great Experience - 5/21/24


The following is a narrative of a great experience (people, process, service, facility) at a minor league sporting event – key points that could apply to any business are in bold… Mark and I pulled into the parking lot, excited about the game.  The Slapshots had been on a roll Read more

Your Best Ability is… - 5/14/24


I enjoy watching sports, and I’ve even listened to some sports press conferences over the years, just to hear what coaches are saying.  Basically getting the leadership perspective from the sports industry either out of my interest or curiosity, or to figure out how to apply it to the Read more

“You’re the Boss” – 2/20/24

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

Terrence is excellent at what he does.  From a technical standpoint, he knows how to keep the facility clean.  He’s the lead custodian, and he knows that keeping things straight does not necessarily mean keeping things sanitary.  He knows what chemicals to use and not to use, how to make sure the floors get cleaned and waxed properly.  He knows when to hit the bathrooms, when to address the office spaces.

Although Terrence works in an office setting, the way his company is structured, he actually reports to managers in the corporate housekeeping department in a different location.

He was meeting with his facility office manager one day, and she was making a special request.  He responded:  Sure thing!  You’re the boss.

When it comes to Terrence’s specific job, she is not the boss.  He directly reports to the person with the hiring/firing authority – the person in the corporate office.  Terrence knows this, but in his mind, he treats the office manager like she’s the boss, too.

She is the ultimate customer.  She is the one that is trying to manage this facility, create the kind of culture she’s searching for with the staff.  She’s the one that’s trying to help the business become even higher performing.

And Terrence understands that his job is to increase his customer’s likelihood of success.

To Terrence, it’s a mindset and an understanding that the customer, in the end, is the true boss.

Reflect on the mindset that you bring into conversations with the customers.  The customers are the ones that you are ultimately doing your work for, the ones that you are trying to help succeed, the ones to whom you’re trying to provide a great customer experience.

Foster a mindset that’s a motivator to deliver a great experience to the ultimate customer.

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Help Me Help You – 7/4/23

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

With all due respect to the movie Jerry Maguire, this tip is not about the life of agents for professional athletes.  It’s about customer service and what it really means to help.

We’ve seen employees wear badges that say “Ask me. I am happy to help!” or “May I help you?” or “How can we help you today?”

But what are we signing up for when we ask these questions or make these statements?  Although the badge conveys our willingness to help and solicits questions from customers, what are we offering to do?

We are offering to provide information, to share our knowledge, to understand their unique needs and guide them toward the right solution.  These actions require a desire to take action on the customer’s behalf, a willingness on our part to continually learn about our role, our services, our organization, and the ability to ask the right questions, matching the need with a solution.

We are offering to overcome obstacles or eliminate roadblocks.  We are there to help them move to a next step or get through their day in a positive way.  We are there to find pathways to Yes rather than roadblocks of No’s.  These actions require a desire to address problems, to think through processes from the customer’s perspective, and to be pleasant in our engagement with others.

Being helpful may seem like a simple concept, but to truly help others, we need to have the desires, the willingness, the knowledge, and the ability to have a positive influence on those that we come in contact with each day.

Make sure that you’re equipped to truly help the customer today.

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Don’t Let This Shot Affect Your Next Shot – 11/15/22

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

When I was a teenager, I used to play a lot of golf, and I was pretty good for my age.  I’d have a good attitude and enjoyed the game, but if I hit a bad shot, I’d get upset.  And more often than not, that one bad shot and the frustration that followed would be followed by another bad shot and more frustration.  It would snowball, and everything would go downhill.

One day, I was playing the third hole on my home course with my Dad.  I was hitting my second shot, and instead of the ball going straight to the green, it took a sharp left turn into a big pine tree.  The ball pinged from branch to branch until it dropped to the ground.  Highly upset at hitting such a horrible shot, I flung my club into that same tree.  But the club did not drop to the ground; it was stuck up in the tree.

How My Dad Responded

Now my Dad could have responded in a number of ways.  He could have yelled at me for throwing my club.  He could have told me to climb up the tree and get it.  He could have given me a stern lecture on my poor behavior. 

He did none of those.  Instead, he walked over to the tree, climbed up, and got my club.  He then handed it to me and walked away.

I don’t know if I had ever been so embarrassed in my life.

How I Responded

Needless to say, I stopped throwing clubs.  Today, I rarely play golf, and when I do, I don’t play or score nearly as good as when I was a teenager.  But I seem to take more joy in playing.  And when I hit a bad shot, I don’t let it affect me much at all.  More importantly, I don’t let it affect my next shot and eventually ruin my round.

In customer service, you have many opportunities to get frustrated.  And while the immediate reaction – the frustration – is understandable, don’t let that bad situation affect the attitude you take into the next situation, the next conversation, the next encounter.

Don’t let one frustration snowball and ruin your whole day.

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