Ginaherald's Blog

May 28, 2010

Customer service is great

Filed under: Uncategorized — ginaherald @ 1:51 am

When it comes to efforts like the ones I referred to in my last post, I’ve had people say to me “well sure, that’s fine for you; it’s just how you are when it comes to customer service.” “My people aren’t like that; don’t have that attitude toward service.”  To that I say:  “Why not?”  “Why do you let them think that it’s OK not to have an all out service attitude when it comes to taking care of your customers?”  Sure, I’m probably a bit over the top in my expectations but in my own experience many more things are possible than we are sometimes led to believe.  I’m not sure if it’s just my natural inclination to take on a problem and solve it because I love a challenge.  That may play in to it.  I’ve never been one to be able to wait on someone else to take care of something or make something happen.  Therefore I chose to equip and empower myself to take care of my clients versus waiting for someone to give me permission.  Of course it was the culture at Nordstrom which is probably why I enjoyed working there so much.  It is a culture that can be created in any company that wants to commit to doing some work to create it. 

 If we examine a couple of the 4 “E’s” of great customer service (mentioned in my first few postings) they are things that are pretty easy to do.  First is set the Expectation.  It’s communication that calls for clarity around what customer interactions should look like. Second is Equipping.  What equipping takes is teaching, on the part of those in management/leadership, about the resources and information that are available to team members when it comes to solving problems. I think sometimes those on the front lines simply don’t know what kind of latitude they may have on behalf of the customer and they are too cautious to just make a decision.  Understandable for sure.  It requires a time investment in training and communicating with front liners on a regular basis.  Using teaching opportunities as they arise in daily interactions. And that requires leaders that are on the front lines with their people.  Are you there?  If not it may be affecting your service levels.

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