phrases | Customer Service Solutions, Inc.

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 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

It’s Not What You Did… – 12/12/23

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

The statistic we have quoted a lot relating to customer retention is that 68% of lost business is due to perceived indifference. That means that about 2 out of every 3 customers were lost because the customer perceived that that company was indifferent to them.

It’s kind of an odd way to look at things. This statistic does not suggest that the company specifically did something to lose the customer.  This statistic can be interpreted to convey that it was what the company did not do that lost the customer.

So, let’s think about this as it relates to our individual roles…

The reason for the customer loss may not be the billing error as much as it is the LONG process to get the error rectified.

The reason for the customer loss may not be the content of the e-mail in response to the customer complaint; instead, the reason may be the lack of empathy conveyed in the company response.

The reason the customer decided to start buying the product elsewhere may not have been the callback from the company after the customer left a voice message with a question; the reason could be the fact that the customer call was not returned for a week after the message was left.

The reason they didn’t renew their annual membership wasn’t that the membership was a bad value. It’s just that the only time the organization contacted the customer was when the company was trying to sell the customer something.

When you think about how to better the customer experience, instead of always focusing on how to improve what’s currently done, consider what aspects of the experience lack urgency on behalf of the customer, lack empathy, lack responsiveness, or lack an intent to develop a relationship.

To improve retention, don’t always focus on what the company did.  Sometimes focus on what the company did not do.

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Talk Up Your Teammate – 12/5/23

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

It happens all the time in business. The salesperson transitions the new customer to their service representative.  The nurse tells the patient about the doctor about to come into the room.  The gatekeeper tells the customer about the supervisor they’re about to transfer the customer to, in order to address an issue.

An employee is handing off the customer to a teammate.  At this point, the initial employee has a few options.  They can (1) Simply conduct the handoff, (2) Make the handoff with a little ambivalent or not-so-positive statement about their co-worker, or (3) Talk up their teammate in the handoff process.

We should strive to set our co-worker up for success.  We also want to deliver a great customer experience, one where we’re infusing positivity and building customer confidence.

So, let’s be intentional when we’re making that transition, discussing the co-worker about to enter the conversation, or transferring that call.  Let’s be intentional to infuse some positivity and confidence.

Our account holders love working with Jenny!  She’s very upbeat, is very responsive to requests or concerns, and she really enjoys getting to know our new customers.

Dr. Smith is excellent.  He asks about you, likes to listen and learn, and he’s cared for and helped patients in situations such as yours for over 20 years.

Julio’s definitely the best person to answer your question and help you resolve this issue.  I’ll let him know the details of the situation, and I’m sure he’ll ask you questions to confirm things.  He’s good at determining the cause of the issue, identifying a solution, and following through on his promise.

Part of delivering a great customer experience requires that we strive to be a great teammate.  And when we have to do those handoffs of the customer to a co-worker, be intentional about infusing some positivity and building customer confidence.

Talk Up Your Teammate.

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Use Silence Wisely – 11/28/23

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

Silence is golden…until it isn’t.

Silence is an excellent tool to use when talking to the customer.  Silence can convey that you’re listening, that you are patient, that you are being kind and are deferring to the other person.  Being silent can convey that you’re intentional about what you say, pausing before speaking.

And the benefits of silence are not just about the effect it can have on the customer, silence can also benefit you.  By being silent, you’re allowing yourself time to understand the other person.  You’re allowing yourself time to formulate a response.  You are oftentimes able to relax yourself by breathing rather than speaking, by thinking rather than feeling like you have to immediately react to the other person’s statement.

But there are times when even silence can be overdone.  Particularly when you’re dealing with somebody who has an issue, silence can mean – to them – that there is a bigger issue than even they had anticipated.  Silence can mean – to them – that you’re not understanding their situation.  Silence can mean – to them – that you’re having trouble finding their order, coming up with their account, accessing their appointment information.  And silence can mean – to them – that you just don’t care that much, that you aren’t very interested in engaging with this person.

So, even though we’re not communicating verbally with someone when we’re silent, we are definitely communicating with them.  If we use silence intentionally, we’re silent to convey a certain message, or to be more thoughtful, or to ensure we’re just listening as sincerely and as productively as possible.

But think about, as well, these examples for when silence is overdone. There are times when that customer needs that dialogue, needs you to convey that understanding, needs you to convey the steps you’re going through on their behalf.

Ensure you understand the situation before you determine whether and how to use silence.  Then, use silence wisely.

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