There’s this one commercial on TV. You’ve probably seen it. At one point a girl promises that “when you call Customer Support, I will treat your problem like my problem”.
No. When I call Customer Support, my problem IS your problem. THAT’s what Customer Service is. There is no “like”.
A whole lot of businesses these days have lost sight of one basic fact of business: your customer is your sole means of support. Lose customers; lose money. It’s that simple.
When a customer has a problem, the business must take that seriously and try to resolve it in a reasonable manner. This is not to say that you should put the customer’s demands ahead of the needs of the business. Anybody who has spent time in any Customer Service job knows just how unreasonable people can be. Sometimes, a customer just will not be satisfied. That is an unfortunate reality. However, the vast majority of customer issues can be resolved simply by listening to the customer, making sure that both sides understand the other’s position, and then acting positively to remedy the situation.
“Going the extra mile” has become a meaningless cliche over the years. It sounds fine, but is very seldom put into practice. Going out of your way to help a customer is not “going the extra mile”, it’s normal, acceptable practice. “Going the extra mile” means taking initiative, being creative in your problem solving, and leaving the customer feeling like he or she is the most important person in your life at that moment.
One of the more unfortunate outgrowths of the whole self-esteem movement is that people are less willing to subordinate their desires to the needs of their customers. This is not in the least debasing or disrespectful. I can tell you from my own personal experience that providing top quality customer service will drive your customers to respect you more.
A key facet for a quality Customer Service Rep is the ability and willingness to give without expectations of reward. Helping others gives rewards beyond the monetary. Helping others helps you feel good about yourself and builds REAL self-esteem.
Quality service is every customer’s right and every employee’s resonsibility. If you’re not getting it, let your wallet do the talking.