For my entire working life, customer service has been at the core of my focus. It has been what has helped me increase business, smash budgets, build and manage teams, expand departments, earn promotions and succession plan. It is easy and the domino effect within your business is profound.
What exactly is it about customer service that has enabled me to successfully do this?
First of all lets look at the definition.
What is it I mean by customer service? My interpretation is pretty close to the Wikipedia definition:-
"Customer service is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase. The perception of success of such interactions is dependent on employees who can adjust themselves to the personality of the guest."
For me, I put myself in the customers shoes. I make my role about understanding the customer - what they want, why they want it, why it is important to them to achieve it. And then I deliver. Beyond their expectations. I anticipate what else they may want before they ask for it. And I see everyone as the customer, even if indeed I am theirs.
Purely because of the results I achieve, it has been suggested to me time and time again over the years that I should think about doing sales. My response is always the same: I am not a sales person. I do not see myself as a sales person. What grows the business I work on is not my sales skills but my customer service skills.
Customer service is not hard. Customer service is as easy as spending money. Yet it continually baffles me in this day and age why a good customer service experience seems so rare. Mediocre is the current trend. To the point where when I receive good customer service, I have mixed emotions. I am happy to have had the experience yet sad it was so noticeable. Great customer service on the other hand just about blows my mind. I am not hard to please. I just believe that delivering customer service is not difficult. And why, as a boss or business owner, would you not expect this from yourself or your staff when it means growth in your business and therefore your bottom line.
Customer service is a win / win situation.
I will be covering more on this in the coming weeks, providing examples and giving you ideas of how you can improve your level of customer service. You will be amazed at the positive effect this has on your role and your business.
After all, as the image says, 'Nobody raves about average.'