• How Serious Are You About Customer Service?

    Customer service.  We all talk about it.  We all pontificate about how critical it is.  We all want and expect it when we are paying.

    Why then is it so hard to get right?  Why is it that we all have horror stories about the crappy customer service we experience?  It is so frustrating!

    More importantly, when you screw up serving a client, it has a tangible cost. So how come it keeps happening over and over again around the world?

    I think it is because the mediocre majority of companies do not ‘really care’ about it.   They are truly more focused on costs and getting more for less from their systems, processes, policies and procedures.  All of which were designed exclusively for the comfort and convenience of some executive’s bonus plan.

    Case in point, a former corporation that once hired me to ‘fix’ them, had three different executive bonus plans:  the CFO was rewarded for Working Capital, the CMO was compensated for customer retention, the VP of Sales was chasing new customers.  Results?  Confusion, chaos, internal competition and historic customer churn.

    Customers pay our salaries.  All of us.  Yet, the majority of roles in most organizations are not customer facing.  HR, Finance, Executives even Marketing, etc., never actually spend time on the floor where customers are.

    I am horrified by the number of turn around projects I have done where the executives cannot tell me the last time they called their own customer service line or went into their own shops as a mystery shopper.

    Here it is as simple as I can make it…  Happy employees, that are trained well and are informed of the strategies and their role and responsibilities, will emotionally connect with customers and create lasting bonds resulting in a profitable business.

    Robert Murray is a Business Strategy Consultant, partner at Incrementa Consulting Inc., #1 Best Selling Author, and International Keynote Speaker. For further advice, insight and inspiration on how to unlock your inner leader, follow Robert on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

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