There are a lot of business owners and leaders who tell us that the reason their company stands out from the crowd is because of their quality and customer service.
Now, if you have been reading this blog for a while, you will already know that these two things are not what we would consider to be differentiators. They are simply what is expected, if you ever hope to have your customers return. Without them, it is pretty hard to build a business because you would have to continually invest in attracting new customers so that you can disappoint them.
You laugh, but in some cases this is true. There really are businesses who struggle, because they are choosing to make their issues, their customer’s issue and in the end they find there is no more customers.
So how do you make sure you are following through on providing excellent customer service?
Change the meaning of customer service – Many organizations treat customer service as really the role of the complaint department. Customer service is not a department. It is the responsibility of each and every person in an organization. Without customers, there is no business and when there is no business, there are no jobs. There is a level of service your customers are paying for and understanding that is the meaning of customer service.
Set the standard – Your organization and how it operates is a reflection of what you see as important. You know your customers better than anyone and should know what is important to them. Customer service is not about what is important to you. Customer service is in the eyes of the customer. If you know something is important to your customers, then make sure you demand that level of attention from your employees so that they are always delivering that level of service to your customers.
Own the issue – When you receive feedback from a customer; don’t make excuses, don’t justify the reason it happened, don’t make it their problem or tell them why they are wrong, no matter how in the right you think you are. Whether you realize it or not, this is an opportunity for you to really demonstrate how you are different. They are already expecting you to do all these things and in truth, are hoping that you won’t. When you do these things, you are only proving them right.
Welcome negative feedback – There are a lot of people who don’t like conflict and because of that, they will never provide you feedback no matter how unhappy they are. Instead, they will go out and share their story with others. When someone is willing to tell you that they are unhappy, relish this as much, and if not more than someone who give you praise. Negative feedback is an opportunity to sharpen your skills and to continue to pick up your game.
If you are a company who prides yourself in your customer service and quality and want to use this as your differentiator, then you also need to be willing to put in the work to make sure you can back this up. Provide exceptional customer service and quality and you know they always will!