Customer service has an impact on both existing customers and potential customers. A recent survey found that 68% of consumers would react to a bad experience by telling family and friends about it or by posting it on a social network.
Most customer service problems are related to attitude problems. Being warm and friendly is the starting point. Customer service starts with a smile. When you are in a face-to-face situation, a warm greeting, a nice smile should be the first gesture, followed by attending to their need in the most appropriate manner. Even when handling customer service requests via telephone, a smile can reflect in you voice, so make sure you’re ready to be friendly.
Show Respect to your customers irrespective of who they are. Customer service can often involve emotions, so it’s important to make sure you and your team are always courteous and respectful.
The utmost sign of respect to a customer is listening to your customers. Listening means hearing what your customers are saying out loud and in a personal encounter, what they are communicating non-verbally also matters. Say for example, when you are attending an irate customer, he or she may be sounding calm but their body language showcases the control they are trying to have in their talks.
The purpose of listening to a customer is to respond to customers needs more appropriately. It’s important to respond quickly to all inquiries, even if it is only to say you are looking into the issue and will get back; when you say you will get back, make sure you do. One of the biggest factors in good customer service is speed, especially when a client is requesting something that’s time sensitive. Customers don’t want to be put on hold or kept waiting when they have pressing need.
Customers want to deal with people who are accountable and who are willing to go the extra mile. To deliver exceptional customer service one must possess the qualities like patience, attentiveness, clear communication skills, competency, tenacity, consistency and above all the ability to own 100% responsibility for ones own actions and behavior. In most customer service situations, it’s about fixing own mistakes. Therefore a sense of maturity in dealing with unpleasant emotions is paramount. A calm presence of staying cool under pressure and the willingness to help another person to resolve any situation makes up for a great customer service professional.
Excellent customer service often comes down to consistently checking in with your customers and making sure they are happy with not only the products and services you’re selling, but also the process of purchasing, ordering, working with you, etc. If you do that successfully, you are on your way to becoming known for providing excellent customer service.
For more ideas you can refer to the book ‘Delivering Happiness’ to create great customer experience and a team focused on it.