operational excellence | Customer Service Solutions, Inc.

The Proven Value in What You Do - 4/9/24


Forbes wrote an article last year based on a compilation of the results of research on customer service and the customer experience; it was titled:  100 Customer Experience Stats For 2023. In reading the article, you’ll note that many of these key research findings are about you – the value Read more

A Tale of Two Texts - 4/2/24


Having to get allergy shots once a week is never fun, and for Janet, it became an even bigger frustration. She had the shots typically scheduled on Tuesday around 10:30 in the morning, figuring she would avoid the morning rush as well as the lunch rush by going mid-morning.  However, Read more

The Secret Sauce for Great Customer Service - 3/26/24


I was working with the League Office for a major American sport several years back, and one of the executives asked me to describe our Secret Sauce that helped our clients improve the fan experience and customer retention.  I gave him a sense of what makes us unique and Read more

The Miracle of an Apology - 3/19/24


Unfortunate but true story… The manager basically lost his mind.  He terminated his employee on the spot.  She had told the customer that there was going to be a delay in the shipment.  The employee called up the customer ahead of time to let the customer know what was about Read more

It’s Not About the 5-Minute Wait - 3/12/24


Robert went into his supervisor’s office to update her on a situation at the payment desk.  Robert said that a customer was about fourth or fifth in line, waiting to be served, and the customer was complaining loudly about the wait.  He was there to make a property tax Read more

Lessons from the Greats - 3/5/24


I was recently facilitating a workshop on the customer experience, and I made the point that it’s usually beneficial to look at your personal life for great experiences; identify what really resonates with you in a positive way in order to uncover ideas to improve your own customer service. So, Read more

The Empathy Roadmap - 2/27/24


For some people, empathy comes naturally.  There’s an innate desire to learn about the other person and to sincerely convey that sense of interest and caring.  But for many of us, sometimes it helps to have a communication plan.  It helps to know what to do in order to Read more

“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

Cloud and Customer Retention

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

Customer retention becomes a hotter topic every time the economy tanks. Most recently we noted in the early 2000s and starting in early 2009 that businesses were talking more about customer service, loyalty, and retention. That focus increased because the backlog of customers and the levels of disposable income greatly decrease in recessions, so the demand for products/services generally decreases.

As demand decreases, so does either volume or pricing, and thus begins the pinch on profitability. So organizations begin to realize something they forgot – that customer retention initiatives generally provide ROI multiple times that of acquisition initiatives, and to maximize profit, they have to redirect marketing dollars to retention.

With the advent of cloud computing, a new twist on customer retention can be taken. The cloud enables businesses to house the client’s data – using the cloud to hold and backup information so the client doesn’t have that responsibility. But to truly understand how the cloud really enables customer retention to grow, refer back to the 1990s book “The Discipline of Market Leaders.” In that book, the authors note that industry-leading companies typically master one of three key disciplines, Product Leadership, Operational Excellence, or Customer Intimacy.

Customer Intimacy focuses on generating loyalty by knowing your customers so well, having relationships so strong that your customers will stick with you. But don’t view “customer relationships” as some “soft” relationship, and this is where the cloud comes in. Build loyalty by having your products and services become vital to the day-to-day operations of your clients. Build loyalty by becoming integrated with your customers. Build loyalty by using the cloud, cloud computing in particular, or access to (or storage/backup of) client data to fill a need for your client.

To create more loyal clients and build your customer retention, find ways to use the cloud to get your clients housing their data on your systems. Use the Cloud for Customer Retention.

Listen to our latest podcast episode of “Stepping Up Service” on The MESH Network at http://themesh.tv/stepping-up-service/

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


What’s the Page?

Posted on in Business Advice Please leave a comment

Who’s on the same page in your organization? Who’s not? Let’s start with this question.

What is “the page?”

Most organizations try to create a certain culture. “We’re an entrepreneurial organization!” or “We’re leading-edge innovators.” or “We’re all about quality.” or “We’re about empowering employees.”

All that’s well and good, but what’s the point? You’re entrepreneurial to do what? Your being innovative why? You’re about quality for what reason? You’re empowering employees to accomplish what?

You’re trying to create a certain culture or image or mindset or reputation, but don’t create those things for the sake of creating them. Start with defining the goal, the Vision, the purpose, the Mission – the “page.”

Maybe being entrepreneurial isn’t the best thing if you need operational excellence to compete. Maybe being leading-edge isn’t the best thing if your customers are risk-averse. Maybe quality being the top priority requires your cost per unit to rise above competitors. And maybe empowering employees isn’t the best thing if your company is poor at defining parameters for decision-making, holding others accountable, and rewarding risk.

I’m not saying these characteristics of culture aren’t important. I’m saying “don’t get the cart before the horse.”

Know who you want to become and where you want to go. Only then should you identify the culture you need to get there.

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

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