The Customer Isn't Always Right, but Needs Exquisite Care
There's never been a time when great customer service mattered more than it does now. The economy is recovering, but consumer confidence is still down, and the customers who are buying have scores of choices of where and how to buy. And now almost every product and service out there has been "commoditized" (that is, by one definition, evolved to its lowest common denominator), so it's hard to determine who offers the best value; therefore many people shop based on price alone.
It's more important than ever for companies to differentiate themselves from all the others. It's critical to make sure that the whole value proposition is clear and is consistently delivered in a way that delights and even surprises customers.
This gets done two ways. The first is through a positive, customer-focused company culture that values, supports and nurtures relationships. The second is from the personal commitment and determination of the people that take care of the customers every day. When customer-facing people choose in every interaction to provide a level of care that is exquisite, they build big "emotional bank accounts" with customers that keep them connected to the company (even if they can't buy as much today as they did yesterday.)
While customer care is everyone's business and should be part of everyone's job description, the customer facing people have the primary responsibility to "be the company" in the eyes of the customer.
Since it's especially critical in these challenging times to take exquisite care of the customers a company already has, here are seven things every customer-facing person needs to know in order to do an outstanding job:
One has the power to spread positivity and make the world a better place. Everyone knows how important that contribution is these days. Take it seriously, and one can make a serious difference in the lives of one's customers and everyone they touch. Allow one's self to see the ripples of goodwill and well-being one is sending out into the world. Spread happiness and appreciation, and one will feel energized and build one's own good health. Optimists live seven to nine years longer than pessimists.
Use this list of "Seven Things" to start a lively dialog in one's organization. Spread the article around. Discuss each of the points, adding a few of one's own. Reflect on the good points of being in a customer-facing job. Appreciate the power and opportunity that rest in one's hands. Make the commitment to be the best one can be. Have fun and do good work.
Adapted from an article by JoAnna Brandt of http://www.customercarecoach.com/.
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