Customer Service Excellence Cartoon
Almost every one of us can spot poor customer service. A service-giver may fail to make eye contact, say little or nothing when taking payment or deal with you in perfunctory fashion. As if this behavior is not bad enough, the service-giver may roll their eyes, ignore you or communicate in an unhelpful or even rude manner.
Our response to such behavior is either to give as-good-as we get in the moment or (and this is much more likely) to walk away and perhaps never deal with that person or that organization again (simply determining that we do not wish to risk such a negative encounter for a second time). Hence, one person’s attitude and approach may have significantly damaged a business in commercial terms (and they may not even know this has happened).
Although we all have our service “war stories” at a personal level, it is equally true that we are all service-givers ourselves in our work lives. As such, we need to think very carefully about the negative impact of poor customer service when we talk to our suppliers and customers (whether they are internal or external ones). As a minimum we should therefore avoid being perfunctory or rude and once we can do this in a consistent way, we can start to think about how customer service which goes the “extra mile” makes us feel, and do this more often for the people to whom we offer service.