To stop seeing you close your eyes. To stop smelling you hold your breath. To stop tasting you close your mouth (and plug your nose). You have the ability to shut down most of your senses. But did you know you can't just stop hearing? And isn't this ironic because it's listening that we all seem to struggle with. We all learn more by listening than speaking but yet we generally do just the opposite when contacting the customer. In our quest to find the ingredients to great customer exchange, we arrive at an important aspect which we call, you then me. With - you then me - we prioritize the customer over ourselves. We listen, then respond, We give then we ask. Customer service cannot be a selfish exercise and thru things like "you then me" we are much better to make a connection and connections improve cooperation..
Seems like just yesterday that we were just some friends building a business out of the proverbial garage. The passion that made us work 100 hours a week has never gone away (though the 100 hour days mostly have). As organizations grow, the culture that made them great sometimes gets lost, Does growth automatically mean bureaucracy and indifference? How does your organization maintain its maverick personality?
Whether we know it or not, when we buy products or services from companies, they are putting us through a particular process. We don't see, Step 1, Step 2, Step 3, but it's there. The problem with most processes are they are one dimensional. They rarely take the untrained customer into consideration. So how do build processes that take your objectives and the customers goals and build a process with the fewest steps possible?
An old story states that the Sun and North Wind wanted to prove who had more influence. So they choose a simple test; who can make a man remove his coat. The North Wind stepped up and blew and howled at the man but it only made him hold on to his coat tighter. The wind blew and blew and blew but nothing changed. The sun instead just smiled and shown bright. The man feeling the warmth just took the coat off himself. While this Aesop's Fable wasn't talking directly about customer service, he was speaking to the benefit of being courteous over cantankerous. Agencies that want to persuade a customer towards a goal knows that treating customers as people instead of a function or a "call" or a commission are more successful. So how does an organization help their team members move from, "I had 200 calls today", to "I got to work with 200 people today"? Routine can sometime breed complacency. So how does your organization insure that the customer experience is woven into every customer interaction?