customer experience | Customer Service Solutions, Inc. - Page 10

“You’re the Boss” - 2/20/24


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 Read more

Customer Understanding Leads to Relationship Growth - 2/13/24


We’ve worked with educational organizations at all grade levels over the years.  One special and unique characteristic about the staff who work in these organizations is that there’s a clear intent to know about the students as individuals, to focus on them rather than purely focusing on what’s delivered Read more

Define Customer Service Success Differently - 2/6/24


When I’m watching television, listening to the radio, or listening to a podcast, it’s always interesting when the topic moves to the question:  How can you be a success?  The speakers often discuss the process of becoming a success with the assumption that people believe success is defined by Read more

Care Enough to Give Them a Heads Up - 1/30/24


Nothing bad at all might happen.  Every day in the office could seem like every other day.  Sights and sounds and smells might continue to be the same.  But we have a lot of construction going on around our offices, and the building manager knows the type of work Read more

Be Better than AI Customer Service - 1/23/24


There was a recent CBS Sunday Morning Show story called: How artificial intelligence is revamping customer call centers. The journalist described how artificial intelligence is being used in customer service, and he noted the millions of pieces of information that can be processed in a matter of seconds. There are clear Read more

Recognize the Situation, and Pivot - 1/16/24


The customer has a complaint, or they may have an important question about an order or their account.  You may be talking to them in an emergency room, in the lobby of the government building, on the phone, or in a video conversation.  And in many of these Moments Read more

Sharpen Your Service Delivery - 1/9/24


You work so hard at being responsive and providing high quality information.  You work hard at fixing problems.  But is your delivery…dull? I’m not saying that it has to be exciting, but let’s think of the word “exciting.”  It means that something’s interesting, has energy, is positive.  Just by its Read more

Make Empathy Your Superpower - 1/2/24


I was facilitating a Service Excellence Training class for a Higher Ed client in the Northeast several years back.  As I was walking through the portions of our technique for defusing the angry customer, I talked about empathy.  I talked about accepting responsibility. Immediately, one of the hands in the Read more

Holiday Poem 2023 - 12/26/23


The days are getting longer, The skies are getting brighter. Festivities behind us, And festivities before us.   There’s ups and downs and change coming, And we can’t predict when or where. There’s challenges and joys and opportunities around, Of which you may or may not be aware.   But one thing we know as we look at each Read more

Refresh, Rejuvenate, Refocus - 12/19/23


It’s that time of year.  We’re going 100 miles an hour, and holiday time is upon us.  We not only have all the work to do, but we somehow have less time to do it.  We somehow have other things that are of competing interest, and even though those Read more

Thanks for Reading – 8/1/23

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

My company, Customer Service Solutions, Inc., just celebrated our 25th Anniversary!  We love the work we do for our clients, and we definitely love our clients.  We’ve developed many friendships over the years, and we’ve tried to provide consistently high quality and personal support for whatever may be their particular goals or needs or issues.

For about 24 of those 25 years, we’ve written these tips of the week.  So, thank you for being a Tip fan, and Thank You for Reading!

CSS conducts a lot of research for our clients, and among all the different types of research we provide, we’ve conducted well over 1,000 surveys.

Sometimes these are web-based surveys where – in lieu of or in addition to completing the survey – the customer or account holder will e-mail us directly, since we’re the survey administrator.

If they have a question or a need or an issue to be addressed, we always reply.  It’s amazing how many times that survey respondent replies to our reply by saying: Thanks for reading! By saying: I can’t believe somebody actually responded. By saying: Thanks for taking my issue seriously.

It’s interesting that the customer is showing appreciation just for somebody reading their message.  Just for getting a response.  Just for feeling like they are being heard.

It’s amazing how simply responding – simply allowing people to feel heard – has a tremendous impact on how the customer feels.  And as Maya Angelou once said:  People will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

And it makes me feel great that you all have read all these tips, and hopefully they’ve helped you a little bit over the years.

Thanks for Reading!

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Share the Why to Value the Customer – 7/25/23

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

We encourage our clients to explain “The Why behind the What” to the customer.  Usually we suggest that staff explain Why so that the customer understands the reason for a change or can buy-in to a particular solution.

However, explaining the Why is also effective when you’re doing some very routine things for the customer.  When you explain Why you’re doing the task, the customer understands the benefit to them.  It makes them feel valued.  It often makes them feel important.

I’ll walk you through this document, so you’re clear on the main takeaways and are comfortable with the next steps.

To keep you informed, I’ll send you an e-mail on Friday with an update.

To protect the carpet and floors in your home, I’ll be wearing covers on my shoes.

I’ll share a copy of the contract using an encrypted document to protect your privacy.

I’m providing you this 1-page map of the event site so you can quickly get to the activities of most interest.

I’ll give you my cell phone number so you can easily get in touch with me if you have any questions or if other needs arise.

If you just take the action noted in the 6 statements above, then:  You share a document, you send them an e-mail, you wear shoe covers, you send the contract, you give them a 1-pager, you give them a phone number.

However, if you explain Why and focus on the benefit to the customer, then: They feel comfortable with next steps, they’re kept informed, their carpet and floors are protected, you’ve protected their privacy, they save time getting to the activities of most interest to them, and they can easily get in touch with you as needs arise.

Even when you’re doing the routine, try to describe it to the customer.  State what you’re doing, but also share Why to help them feel important and valued, to ensure they understand the benefits of what you do for them.

Share the WHY to Value the Customer.

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Navigate their New Experience – 7/18/23

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

Everything is changing for customers.  How they buy products and services…how they get customer service…where they get information from, and who provides the information.

So, confusion and frustration can ensue.  Let’s help customers navigate our new world, our new systems and processes.  It’s about Empathy and Expectations; it’s about Input and Improvement:

  • Empathy: If customers are upset or frustrated, and you show empathy, they’ll feel you’re listening. Listening conveys that you’re an understanding person who cares about them, their situation, their feelings.  Don’t argue or interrupt; instead, agree with some of what they say.  They’ll feel that they’re interacting with someone who’s on their side, and that can bring down the emotion.
  • Expectations: If customers are used to different processes, systems, and wait times, be proactive in communicating what they should expect from now on; in e-mails, texts, letters, onsite signage, and in discussions, explain processes simply and succinctly.  Describe timeframes, and share what they need to do v. what will be done by the company.  And when the customer is engaged with your business, ensure that your best teachers are charged with engaging the customers on the new steps.
  • Input: Getting through the implementation of change is a success; but it’s just the start.  How can we get feedback from the customer?  If satisfaction and retention of the customer are important, then we need to find ways to get them to weigh-in on the process.  What’s the experience like from their perspective, and how can we be set up to pivot based on the input?
  • Improvement: Take the customer input; use it to consistently improve the processes, systems, communications, and training.  Consider 90-day post-implementation action planning – make continuous improvement just how you operate.  Seek input to drive progress.

When changing the customer experience, help the customer to navigate their new world.

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