I’ve worked in the customer service industry for the better part of my adult life in one fashion or another – whether it be in person, on a phone, through electronic chat, or by e-mail, and one thing I have learned is that it’s really not hard to achieve good customer service. It takes a few key things to remember in order to make someone’s visit memorable:
– Listen………actively listen to what the customer is saying
– Have an upbeat tone – make them feel welcome, and perhaps a little bit special
– Show attention to detail – make sure they know that you heard what they wanted, and are ready to deliver
– Under-promise and over-deliver – give them that little extra “wow factor” that makes them remember you
I know it sounds like something you might read in a training manual, but it’s true. If you are going to work in any customer service industry, then you need to have a passion for it.
Yes – in this day and age, it’s really hard to be upbeat and polite when a majority of the people you encounter are selfish, entitlement-minded, bitter people who just need to be high-fived in the face with a shovel, but this is the career choice you made. If you aren’t ready to fulfill the expectations, then perhaps you need a change of vocation. One place I see this sorely lacking in is the fast food/restaurant business arena. People don’t listen, they don’t pay attention to detail, and they have no passion for what they are doing, and they don’t realize just how much this makes them look like an ass and makes the business look like they don’t care.
So, from a consumer standpoint, how do you make a difference in this arena that is slowly crumbling like the seashore coastline? It’s easy, and it’s right in front of you – when they push those surveys on you…………fill them out. Actually sit down, take some time, and tell each one of these places you do business with what you think of them. Backtrack through your experience, pick it apart, and lay it all out on the line. Any business worth their salt and gives one rat’s behind, will pay attention to these and do whatever it takes to make their businesses better.
If they do not change, and no experience ever improves, then you say what’s on your mind the other way – with your wallet. If you don’t like the service, then find another place that will do what it takes to make you feel special and welcomed so that you’ll want to come back again to them. I have seen many places rise and fall due to feedback like this. In our age of social media, that attention spreads like wildfire! There are groups on all forms of social media that specialize in discussing experiences with various places, plus you have many rating sites that also have postings listed right on their page that display each person’s experience and the rating they gave them. If you don’t think that matters, you haven’t been paying attention.
So when you go to a store – a restaurant – your favorite burger dive, and they ask you to fill out the survey to let them know how you did – take them up on it! This is your voice to tell these places just what you think of them, directly to their face.