Customer service goes wrong when the first reaction is to deny a problem exits. The most successful service happens when the promise to the customer is kept.
Every transaction contains a promise to the customer. This product will work, you will get fast delivery from our on-line store, pressing one will get you to technical support, and our waiting room is comfortable, you’ll be called shortly.
Customer service is everywhere. Schools have students they are the customer. The barber has a customer sitting in the chair. Your cellular provider has subscribers.
It is the person who receives postal service mail, the person pushing the shopping cart, and the person channel surfing on their HD TV.
What every customer wants to know is that you’ll keep your promises.
You will educate my child, give me a great haircut, and keep my cellular network up and running. You will also deliver my mail, keep good store hours, and give me great television entertainment at a reasonable price.
Often the root of the problem starts with the perception of a promise not kept. The first interaction conditions what will happen next. Unfortunately, often the first message received is denial that a problem exists. Denials aren’t always verbal, sometimes they are visual.
The website contact page takes you only to a form. A waiting room has only three chairs, one is broken, one is a child’s chair, and one has food on it. You can watch any one of the 15 stations in your TV subscriber package but you only want one.
It could be that none of those represents the promise that the customer expected, so they’ll often take what they can get, they will accept it as is. They’ll fill out the form, stand in the waiting room, and occasionally watch the one channel in the package that they actually enjoy.
Successful service is a promise kept. It is not closing the sale. It is not denial that there is a problem.
Customer service is only effortless when you don’t believe the customer could ever have a problem.
Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.