There are more than 4 keys to great customer service but it starts with these 4. Without these 4 basic keys you’ll fail and the nightmares will begin.
You were awakened last night from a sound sleep by a nightmare. In your dream, a disappointed customer posted a not too complimentary video on Facebook. It went viral. There you were, all over the world, millions of shares. Nightmares that could become true are the worst, aren’t they? Customer service is more critical to your business’s well-being than ever because consumers have a more prominent voice.
A few years back, I was privileged to lead the service team of one of the top 50 home remodeling companies in America. This industry isn’t known for its customer service. Home remodeling is a 300 billion dollar per year industry in the USA. There are tens of thousands of providers and just as many stories of unhappy consumers. Our team was recognized nationally during my tenure, winning prestigious awards for our customer service. We were also the only Indiana company from any industry to win the BBB Torch Award for ethics in business for four consecutive years. Here’s how we did it.
4 Keys to Great Customer Service
We Were Honest
We didn’t make unrealistic promises to appease a consumer. If a part would take two weeks to procure, we told the customer 2-3 weeks. Our philosophy was under promise and overdeliver.
Communication Was Critical
We didn’t wait for the customer to contact us. Our installation and service people completed a signed written survey when work was completed with the customer, and then our staff followed up by calling every new installation and service customer the next day.
We Came Prepared
Our teams had the tools and training for nearly every service contingency we might face.
We Did Great Work
In the home remodeling industry, things can go wrong regardless of how professionally something is installed.. Glass windows break, bath connections leak and siding doesn’t stand up to 150 MPH winds. There are enough potential service issues without sloppy, unprofessional work.
You’re probably not in the home remodeling business, so what’s this got to do with you? Good basic customer service is the same in any industry, whether B2B, B2C, or NFP. Although providing excellent customer service is hard work and takes dedication, it’s not complicated. Be honest, communicate, come prepared, and do great work upfront.
No matter what, you’ll have customer service challenges. Like I said, stuff breaks, but you can eliminate self-inflicted service issues. And when you do, you’ll sleep better. Are you a master of customer service? What sets you apart.
How Can I Help You?
I like to help people and organizations, but I have three criteria I consider before taking an assignment – I believe in what the organization stands for, I know I can help, and it looks like fun. If you have any questions, Contact Me.
Does your business have a management training plan? Businesses and universities use my book, The New Manager’s Workbook, a crash course in effective management, as the basis for their leadership development program. I’m also available to conduct training.
Image by Tumisu, please consider