Monday, 29 April 2013

The 4 Pillars of Excellent Customer Service


We all know that the business we run and are involved in has some level of customer service. In fact, most businesses will claim to have customer service to some degree and rightly so, as all businesses have it in some form or another. From one extreme of ‘you call and we’ll put you on hold and we will never answer’ to the more favourable ‘order today and get it yesterday’. Have you ever asked yourself if you deliver good customer service? Have you ever measured it. Would you say you have systems in place that allow your customers to have great customer experiences when they interact with your business?

You need to change the thinking on the words ‘customer service’; not to change the words, but change what they imply. Customer service is not really about the customer and the service. These are very important elements of the business cycle. Excellent customer service is about the 4 pillars behind the delivery of your service or products: 1) Systems 2) Culture 3) People and 4) Expectations.
Customer service is  about the systems your business has in place to give a smooth delivery of your products or services. Great systems help staff to deliver great customer service and to easily cope with any unseen problems that may arise in the buying process for your customer.

It’s about the culture in which the people work. It’s about the place where you operate, the people who you employ, the tone of your office or shop, the canteen where you eat, your professionalism and manner towards customers, the speed at which you work and the environment in which you work. It’s about the meetings you have day in and day out and the results you achieve when you set goals.

It’s about the people and their capability to work to their best abilities within the processes that you set to deliver your service and products.

And finally, it’s about the perception and expectations that your customer’s have when they interact with you and your capability to meet them. This goes back full circle to the systems you have in place to deliver the customer's expectations and prove that their perception is indeed merited.

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