Excellent Customer Service for 2012
1. Focus on the Customer: It may seem obvious that we must focus more on the customer in 2012, we all are sufficiently tempted by plenty of day-to-day distractions that divert your attention away from doing the things that engage and excite consumers about our product, service or brand.
Have a much greater focus on the customer experience and do everything you can to ensure that all of your systems, processes, programs, policies, initiatives and procedures have one end in mind: to strengthen your focus on the customer experience.
Everything you decide to do in the coming year, from a strategic, operational or budgeting perspective, must revolve around this one resolution: Putting Our Customers at the Very Top of Our Priority List … and Keeping Our Customers at the Top of the List.
2. Focus on the Customer Service Representative: The front-line employee who interacts directly with the customer is the single-most important ambassador a company has; they should be the standard-bearers of your Company’s Vision and Brand. The company’s very reputation and Brand Promise must be conveyed to your valued customer.
As Customer Service Leaders, resolve in 2012 to start recognizing your front-line customer service representatives. They are your customer service soldiers in their role. As leaders, start understanding your role is to shape the resources, systems and processes as tools the front-line customer service representatives can use to heighten and improve the customer experience. Make sure you are providing your customer service representatives with the competencies and skills to do their job well, and then reward them in tangible and meaningful ways when they are successful.
Invite them to be the face of the company in a meaningful way … then observe in wonder as they gain the ability and the motivation to knock the customer’s socks off.
3. Focus on Each Individual Customer Service Touchpoint: In 2012, focus on the critical value of the singular Customer Service Touchpoint with your customers; the one interaction – the next call, e-mail or chat – the single customer service interaction that might be your one chance to carry that customer to loyalty and maximum profitability.
The power of that one customer experience touchpoint is undeniable. You have to do everything you possibly can to transform that customer experience touchpoint into a customer loyalty experience that will have the customer buzzing about the way you answered his question, solved his problem or gave him direction.
You just never know what might come out of the singular customer service touchpoint with a customer. It could be that as soon as the customer disconnects from the call, email or chat or he walks out of your store that he will forget about you. However, it could also very well be that immediately after having had a great customer service experience or a horrible experience that he tweets a message, posts something on his Facebook page or shares his experience with a party of six at lunch.
Copyright 2012. Reprinted with permission from Barbara Wold’s Retail & Consumer Tips