Your customers are people too and would like to receive personal attention to their needs. A North Jersey article highlights the woeful state of phone based customer service.
How turned off are we? In a U.S. survey by Amdocs, an international billing software company, 80 percent of respondents said they’d rather go to the dentist or sit in traffic than deal with an unhelpful customer service representative.
Despite the bad reputation of call centers, there are some who excel at quality customer service. The article provides a wonderful example of a company representative who is very personable and helpful. The customer experience can be summed up as:
A helpful, understanding voice easily accessed from the automated system. A quick resolution. A coupon for a freebie.
When customers call your company give them two important things:
- courteous service
- problem resolution
Treat your customer with respect. If you need, take a step back and remember what the customer wants. You can diffuse a lot of anger and stress by simply being calm and understanding over the phone.
Your customers usually don’t call you just to chat. They want to place an order, return a product, get some support, or find an answer to their questions. You need to be prepared to handle these scenarios. Train your employees so they are empowered to solve customer’s problems.
Don’t go overboard!
On a trip to Target this weekend, the checkout clerk went a little too far in being personable. As she scanned every product, she’d pick it up and make a comment or two about it before proceeding. This delayed our departure from the store and made my wife and I feel a little uncomfortable.
In your efforts to add that personal touch, don’t over do it. If you go too far, you’ll have the opposite effect on customers. Instead of endearing them or making them feel good, you’ll alienate and annoy them.
Remember the golden rule: treat others as you want to be treated. Combine this timeless rule with a friendly personal demeanor and you’ll keep your customers happy.