6 top customer service skills that will grow your business. A good business must pay adequate and necessary attention to all parameters that contribute to its survival. Apart from finance, “good customer service skills ” remain key players that will always drive the business to an enviable height among the leagues of competitors.
That being said, this guide will concentrate solemnly on customer service and how you can use it to your business advantage. The beauty of this article suggests that both starters and the existing business owners will reap great values and dividends, but this will only come to fruition if the details contained therein are jealously and strictly adhered to. Let’s start by answering the below question.
WHAT IS CUSTOMER SERVICE?
Customer service means different things to different people, however are the same from organizations to another. Customer service is a practice of providing solution to a customer’s problem, which could be a complaint, enquiry or general service delivery within the ambit of the business structure.
It’s as simple as that, void of any form of confusion whatsoever. Customer service must provide the aforementioned values otherwise the aim is defeated, when it fails the business will pay dearly. A rootless entrepreneur must step on toes if need be to ensure the employees acquire the necessary Customer Service Skills.
CUSTOMER SERVICE OFFICER:There’s no boundary to who can be a customer service officer in a business organization. This is a collective responsibility for every member of the organization ranging from the top management to the drivers, cleaners and the securities. All parties are drivers in this struggle as the bottom line is having a satisfied and happy customer that will patronize the business for the good days ahead. This is a collective task.
Let me give a scenario, say a customer who patronizes ABC group of company arrived the company’s corridor where probably he should be ushered in by an external security personnel who was so careless to notice the customer, the said customer battled to gain entrance through what seems to be a difficult glass door to decipher the entrance. He finally made his way in anyways. However,
The same customer visited another business office say EDS and co. Where on arrival he receives greetings and was treated like a king by the security personnel, then the door was thrown open for him to access the entrance without stress. Which of these business offices gave a good customer service experience from the entrance point? EDS and co of course, right… Believe it that the customer’s mood had already been fractured entering into ABC group of company and will have doubt in getting satisfaction from the next employee he interfaces with.
Thus the parlance that first impression matters, and this is why customer service is the collective responsibility of every employee, in their various departments.
CUSTOMER SERVICE SKILLS: These are the compulsory skills a customer service officer must possesses and get conversant with in his/her everyday business activities. Below are some of the Customer service skills you must boast of if you’d really want to remain and record significant growth in business.
1. Customer centric employee:The love and passion for whatever you do in life is a motivating factor to success, where this is lacking you might just had embarked on mission in futility. Being customer centric is one of the customer service skills that must not elude your employee. This is the love a customer service officer exhibits to the customers, you must like to see these customers faces at all times. A customer centric employee must wear a smiling face genuinely from the heart, it’s an effective invitation to the customers signaling they are highly welcomed.
If you have an aggressive employee who will hardly put up a smiling face, the best place for such people must not be the customer service point please, otherwise you will record a very high bounce rate in business. These category of employees must not be positioned to interface with the customers.
2. Good Product Knowledge:Show me a customer service officer without a good product knowledge and I will show you a failed business.
As simple as that, effective customer service skills entails you must have a firsthand background knowledge of the brand you have become its ambassador. You must have the ability to provide insights and valuable information to your customers who are in constant need of them.
It’s an embarrassing scenario for a customer to understand he/she knows a product even better than a customer service officer who represents the business organization he/she intends to transact with, this will lead to a loss of confidence in the officer and the brand in question.
It therefore becomes the duty of the management to provide sound training on the job to sensitize the employees towards product knowledge, if done right will win further avenues for a progressive business ground, customer service officers who provide sound information and markets the brand professionally are often times the customers favorite.
3. Patience: Patience has proved a virtue that conquers, a good customer service officer must not be found fidgeting or talking to a customer in a rude manner. You see, these customers are the reason why you were hired in the first place, if machines get to do most of the jobs you can do then you’ve got no business being employed.
Understanding the reason behind your employment will suggest you appreciate the customers while exhibiting a high level of professionalism attending to their complaints, enquiry and suggestions.
Statistics had shown that unsatisfied/irate customers are very dangerous to your business. Do all you can to satisfy them because they are very bad ambassadors that will easily raise propaganda and tarnish your image before your prospective customers? A good customer service skills entails you practice patience with perceived humility, you will attract the customers to your brand with this quality as well grow your business.
4. Empathy: The role and importance of empathy in a business setting can never be over stressed. This is your ability to listen to the customer’s plight then put yourself in his/her shoes to give them a sense of belonging.
If a customer comes complaining about your services, give a listening ear first and do not engage the customer in a hot argument, you know why, you will end up losing the customer to your competitors because they’ll have this feelings that their prides had been intimidated, the customer is a king and will always be so far the theory of myth, business and patronage stands.
When a customer is done laying complaints, ask if you can now talk and if approved by the dissatisfied customer, kindly start by rendering apologies no matter who is at fault. Doing this you must take ownership approach and apologize on behalf of the entire business team. Then look for a way to solve the problem and prevent a reoccurrence of such event. This way, your customers will stick with you for patronage ahead.
5. Good listening and communication skills: Your ability to hear the customer without compromise will help you approach and proffer solution to issues being presented, the customer will be most embarrassed if your response after his/her complaint is parallel from what they stressed initially. It means you do not have their interest at heart.
When you listen and respond accordingly, even if you couldn’t get the task resolved, they will exhibit a level of confidence and trust in the brand again.
Your ability to speak and communicate fluently especially in a language they understand makes for active bonding. When you choose to speak English, kindly avoid grammatical blunders.
6. Good time management:Customer service skills is embedded in good time management. A customer service officer should respond to customer’s enquiry timely either on telephone conversation or customer being present in the business office.
Avoid scenarios where you will promise a customer to carry out specific task and fail to deliver, instead do not make such promises. It pays to surprise the customer with your performance than make empty promises.
There should be a turnaround time (TAT) and customers should be attended to within these provisions as anything beyond that defines service failure on the part of the business, does not encourage patronage.
Conclusion: Good customer service skills if well practiced will establish your business while providing an edge ahead of your competitors within the business and beyond. All the above listed points go a very long way to determine the success of your business, now you know,why not take advantage today?
Raphael Orji is a Digital Marketing Expert, Seasoned and Dynamic Freelancer, with interest in Banking, Personal finance, Entrepreneurial development. A Councillor and Motivational Speaker.
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