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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

A Complaint is a Gift - 5/7/24


A complaint is a gift.  Okay, so the complainer is not always a “gift.”  The customer’s delivery of the complaint is sometimes more like a stocking filled with coal than a vase filled with roses.  But this is why we need to be able to differentiate the complaint from Read more

Mastering Confidence in Customer Service - 4/30/24


It’s not what you said…it’s how you said it. If you’ve ever had someone say this to you, raise your hand.  (I just raised my hand) Usually this is being said when someone is upset with you, but regardless of the reason, that phrase illustrates that HOW we say something often Read more

Be Amazing - 4/23/24


Watching Michael Jordan steal a pass and then dunk a basketball is amazing.  Taking a rocket to the moon is amazing.  The taste of my mom’s homemade beef soup is amazing. We all have our personal examples of what is amazing.  Usually, it’s something that we cannot comprehend, that we Read more

Talk About Yourself to Build Customer Confidence - 4/16/24


When you’re dealing with somebody who is anxious or nervous about a situation, a customer who feels like they don’t have much control, an individual who is unsure and uncertain, it’s important to put the customer at ease.  It’s important to build their comfort level.  It’s important to help Read more

The Problem with “No Problem” – 5/18/21

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

The man asked for his girlfriend’s hand in marriage, and she said: That’s not a problem!

The customer walks into the bike shop wearing a cast and notes that the new bike he just bought had brakes that failed and that need to get fixed. The employee responds:  No problem.

The employee picks up the phone, and the customer says:  Thank goodness I finally got a live voice! I’ve been on hold for 15 minutes!  The employee responds:  No problem.

These are just crazy examples…or are they?

I wish we could strike “no problem” from the list of acceptable phrases in the world of customer service.  The problem with “no problem” is that it is literally saying that the customer is not a problem for the employee.

In the example above, the girlfriend’s sentiment is to shout Yes, but she says “no problem.”  Oftentimes customers do their part in a process or are doing something nice for the employee, and instead of employees being appreciative, they say “no problem.”  Where is the positivity and appreciation?

With the customer in the bike shop, there was an issue that was caused by the company, and instead of the employee being empathetic/understanding and accepting responsibility, he basically ignores all that and instead states “no problem.”  Why would you just tell somebody who you’ve created a problem for that helping them is no problem?

Just because the customer who’s been on hold 15 minutes says “thank goodness,” that doesn’t mean that the employee should respond “no problem.”  A 15-minute wait actually IS a problem.

In customer service, we talk about body language and tone of voice a lot, but the words matter, too.  Appreciation for customers matters.  Accepting responsibility for problems a company causes matters.  Conveying some empathy for the difficulty customers had to go through to get to us matters.  And all those things that matter don’t come across in the phrase “no problem.”

Realize the problem with no problem.  Make sure the words we use convey the right message to our customers.

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Social Media and Customer Service – Are you integrating?

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

It’s a big buzz in the customer service world and in the business world in general. It’s all about social media – Twitter, Facebook, whatever your preferred flavor may be.

In the article Carriers using social media to measure & improve customer service, an IBM exec notes during a forum in Dublin, Ireland that a recent study indicates 33% of consumers overall look for product information via social media while 50% of 18-25 years olds search the social platforms.

Panelists on the topic agreed that “Effective social campaigns to measure and improve customer experience require individualized attention and an increased response speed.”

Let’s stop. Forget about the fact that we’re talking about social media; I’ll even take that word out of the statement. Think about your store. Your online business. Your hospital. Your bank. Your sports team or club.

Now read this statement again: “Effective campaigns to measure and improve customer experience require individualized attention and an increased response speed.”

This fact is NOTHING NEW!

It applies to your storefront, your web, your phone response systems, and – yes – social media. Social media may set an expectation for more immediacy since people using that vehicle are part of a demographic typically looking for quick information and response. Also, from the company’s perspective, since social media can “go viral” to many hundreds or thousands of people quickly, there is a need to address issues fast to maintain the brand and minimize customer churn.

But the core point applies throughout any business; it goes beyond social media. If you want to measure and improve your customer’s experience, get to know your customer as an individual. Communicate with them as an individual. Respond to them quickly…as an individual.

Integrate Social Media and Customer Service in your business, but when you do it, keep in mind that you’re not using Social Media just to promote and sell to existing clients.

You’re doing it to serve your customer as an individual.

Read our New Book – “Ask Yourself…Am I GREAT at Customer Service?” http://www.amigreatat.com/

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