Excellent Customer Service Drives Customer Satisfaction
There are several attributes regularly displayed by staff who consistently perform at high levels of customer service delivery. These attributes are the ones that differentiate Service Excellence winners from other staff. They are also the attributes that managers will want to search for in future hiring and staff transfer decisions.
These attributes are:
Cares for the customer ─ Service Excellence winners are sensitive to customers’ needs and are frequently described as customer advocates. They display a sincere willingness to listen to customers and to assist wherever and whenever they can.
Displays Consistent Service Ethic ─ Service Excellence winners are committed to doing the best job possible every day. They assume ownership of problems in spite of adverse circumstances or conditions. They work well under pressure and adapt quickly to new assignments.
Exceed Production/Quality Goals ─ Service Excellence winners regularly exceed their volume, timeliness, accuracy, and quality goals.
Solves Problems Creatively ─ Service Excellence winners proactively seek alternative methods to improve procedures, reduce costs, and improve quality. They place customers’ needs above internal concerns.
Works Well With Co-workers ─ Service Excellence winners have excellent working relationships with co-workers. They are always willing to help others and to share knowledge freely.
Helps in Other Areas ─ Service Excellence winners display a desire to learn jobs outside their immediate areas of responsibility. They frequently volunteer to assist on task forces and special assignments, notwithstanding the longer hours required.
Exhibits High Energy and Enthusiasm ─ Service Excellence winners exhibit positive attitudes that impact morale within their units. They have the ability to motivate those around them to work harder and smarter on behalf of customers.
Can you teach the above skills? You can, in the same way that you can teach ethics, good manners, proper social behavior, and fellowship to mankind. For in effect, what really differentiates a service excellence deliverer from anyone else is how they interact with their customers, both external and internal. It is really a personal attribute, sort of like being a good citizen or being a good neighbor.
In addition to teaching the above skills, it would be best to create the right internal corporate culture where these skills and attributes can flourish. As we discussed the Monday Morning Marketing Memo on Creating A Culture of Service Professionalism, none of the tactics employed by service excellent companies to build employee professionalism are necessarily revolutionary. Most important, however, these tactics are energetically and comprehensively inculcated throughout service excellence organizations on an on-going, never-ending basis.
In our book The Best of the Monday Morning Marketing Memo we discuss the Five Dimensions of Service Quality Excellence, the 7 Cs of Customer Retention, crafting a Customer Service Creed, Creating A Culture of Service Professionalism, and other key attributes of service excellence providers.
The path to becoming a Service Excellence Company is figuring out how to integrate these concepts into your own comprehensive, energetic, interactive, on-going, and never-ending program.
For, at the end of the day, excellent customer service drives customer satisfaction; resulting in a strategic advantage for your organization with a direct impact on repeat business, customer recommendations to others, market share, revenue, and profit.
If your business focus is on customer satisfaction, all these other items on your corporate scorecard will fall naturally into place.
KEY POINT: the attributes regularly displayed by staff who consistently perform at high levels of customer service delivery are different from other staff.
TAKING ACTION: how do you recognize and reward staff who assume ownership of problems in spite of adverse circumstances or conditions?
How do you reward, recognize and celebrate your customer service success stories? How can these be ingrained in the culture and practices of your entire organization?
Do your training programs focus only on functional skills, or do they also incorporate activities that help to grow personal attributes, social skills, and interpersonal communications skills?
Is your organization or business unit a high energy one or a demotivating, energy-sapping one?
This article is partially excerpted from the book The Best of the Monday Morning Marketing Memo, available in paperback and Kindle formats at Amazon.