The 3 Non-Negotiables of Customer Service
It doesn’t matter what type of organization you run or what products you sell, if you don’t know how to treat your customer base well, you’re not going to be successful. Your goods and services may intrigue people and attract their business, but unless you know how to practice good customer service, they will quickly find other places to go. Fortunately, you can always improve the way you interact with your customers. If you follow some basic steps, you can see a significant difference in the way you communicate with and respond to the needs of your clients. This will result in tremendous benefits for your company.
Give Proper, Effective Training
It’s hard to imagine anyone, regardless of the profession, that doesn’t understand the value of excellent customer service. This doesn’t mean everyone knows how to translate this into action. In addition, some people simply don’t have the natural tendency to treat people with genuine kindness and helpfulness. This is why it’s so crucial that you teach your employees how to work with customers. First, establish basic rules of services. These could be characteristics such as knowledge, courtesy and how to listen. Emphasize how essential it is to make these traits part of every interaction. You may need to drill this into your employees’ minds through frequent workshops, team-building exercises, seminars and one-on-one conversations.
Learn How to Handle Negative Feedback
In any line of work, you’re never going to please everyone all the time. If you work in a restaurant, you’ll always find people who complain about the quality of the food or whether you got the order right. If you work in the medical field you’ll have to deal with patients who get upset over wait times. The list can go on. Though you may be tempted to become defensive, your best approach is to stay calm and patient and express empathy. Acknowledge their dissatisfaction and apologize for it. Then, ask what you can do to make things right. You don’t want to lose a valuable customer; reacting with annoyance or frustration could drive people away.
Open Your Ears
Few things will cause a customer to go elsewhere than if he or she feels as though you aren’t listening to their concerns. When you speak with a customer about an issue, look him or her in the eye, and let the person explain the entire problem before you respond. Much of the person’s feedback could be relevant and valuable.
Customer service is an essential element of your business’s success. Make sure you apply these principles in your daily work.