As the meeting commenced, the director announced to the team that an informal survey had been conducted, the results of which would be shared with everyone. Not only had they called customers to ask what they thought of their reps, but they also reviewed call recordings and email exchanges to better understand the quality of service they had been providing to their clients.
Some smiled and sat up straighter, while others appeared ashen and faint.
Truth is, there was no such survey. And what started as a little joke (it was April 1st after all) was far more revealing than anyone expected.
Which got us thinking, what kind of customer service are we offering when no one is listening?
We’ve all been on the receiving end of poor customer service. It’s the words “Ma’am or Sir” used one too many times. It is the repeating of the phrase “that’s our policy.” It’s script reading so monotone that you ask pleadingly are you really a human being? to which they answer “Yes, Ma’am.”
But while it is easy to identify poor service when we receive it, it may not be as easy to recognize poor customer service when you are the one handing it out. Often the difference between adequate service and exceptional service relies on the team member’s understanding of the importance of their role.
Consider the following about your team:
- Do they feel comfortable with the information and services they are providing?
- Do they value a positive customer experience over proving themselves ‘right’?
- Do they feel empowered to resolve conflicts on their own (regardless of who is ‘right’)?
- Do they have the emotional intelligence to read their customer’s needs and moods and respond accordingly?
- Do they understand the tremendous impact they have on the company’s success?
Thankfully, the problem was not that the ashen and faint co-workers had been providing terrible customer service – it was that they feared the service they had provided was not good enough.
By clearly outlining expectations, showing appreciation and giving your reps authority, they will have the confidence to be great, not just when they think you are listening, but more importantly when you are not.
Need a hand with this sort of stuff? Give us a call. We’re always listening.