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Delivering Effective Customer Service

Delivering Effective Customer Service

Delivering Effective Customer Service

Customer service is based upon four key elements:

  1. Communication skills
  2. Positive Attitudes.
  3. Technical Skills and knowledge.
  4. High standards.

Your organisation can live long and prosper, only if it satisfies the needs of its customers.

These days, customers are more demanding and less tolerant of poor service than ever before. Therefore, in your organisation, customer service should be a high priority.

To improve your customer service, develop these four key skills:

1. Communication

The most obvious tool for effective customer service is excellent communication skills.

Communication skills are themselves composed of various subsets:

  • Listening skills: the ability to pay attention to, understand and remember what people say.
  • Questioning skills; the ability to get to the facts and understand how it induces feelings.
  • Speaking skills; the ability to explain things so that there are never any misunderstandings.
  • Negotiation skills; the ability to find a practical solution between two or more opposing positions.
  • Rapport skills; the ability to make an emotional connection with any type of person.

Communication skills are the result of developing the right mental attitude.

2. Mental Attitudes

Underpinning your communication style is your mental attitude.

Your attitudes are the sum of all the thoughts, feelings and beliefs.

You have attitudes towards everything; you have attitudes towards your customers, your bosses, your work; and your suppliers.

Your attitudes will shape your results because your attitudes affect everything you say and everything you do.

What should be your attitude when at work?

Your attitude should be a keen desire to add value to the other person.

You should strive to add value to your boss, your customers, your suppliers and your colleagues.

Add value to everyone you meet.

If that were your prevailing attitude, then your language and actions would satisfy the needs of your customers.

But, in order to add value to your customers, you need more than a good attitude, you also need technical skills.

3. Technical Skills

Attitudes must be backed by technical ability.

Your levels of technical ability define the limits of your service.

If suppliers are good at what they do, then you may forgive them for any failings in other areas of their customer service.

But if suppliers of services are incompetent, then no matter how polite their customer service staff are, you will not give them any more business.

Technical skills mean; skills relating directly to the provision of the product or service, for which you are being employed.

  • If you are a plumber, it means being proficient at plumbing.
  • If you are an electrical engineer, it means providing safe electrical engineering.

Any laxity or failing in the basics of your trade will be judged severely by customers.

For example: In our bathroom, we have discovered that the fitter failed to install a waterproof membrane behind the shower tiles, and this omission has resulted in the wall suffering water damage that has spread far beyond the dimensions of the shower cubical. Under these circumstances, there is not much the fitter can say to me that will induce me to trust him with more work, nor to recommend him to others. He fell below an acceptable standard.

4. Standards

Ultimately, you need to present work of such high standards that the customer will be ready, willing and able to give you continued work, and to recommend you to others.

You should hold yourself to standards that are HIGHER than your customers are likely to expect. You should do that for many reasons:

  1. It protects you from complaints.
  2. It generates new leads in the form of referrals from satisfied customers.
  3. It gives you the edge over your competition.
  4. It makes you feel good about yourself and your organisation.

Write down a list of standards and stick to them.

Keep your standards high.

Never compromise your standards.

About the Author: Chris Farmer

Chris

Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

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Further Reading in Communication - Clear Communication

  • Success Through Communication
    The ability to communicate ideas to the rest of your team, is a vital skill for your organisation's success.
    Read Article >
  • The Most Important Question
    Many people speak in vague terms, or they don’t make themselves clear, so don't be afraid to ask them for clarification. It is dangerous to guess their meaning; ask the all important question before jumping to conclusions.
    Read Article >
  • Ten Top Tips For Sending Professional Calendar Meeting Invites
    To ensure your meetings are well attended and productive, you need to ensure that your meeting invitations are professional. These tips will help you to clearly communicate the purpose of the meeting and help attendees prepare.
    Read Article >
  • The Importance of Business Communication Skills
    If you want to succeed in business, being a good communicator is essential. Not only do you need to communicate to others what, why and how a goal is to be achieved, you need to listen to feedback received in order to make adaptive changes.
    Read Article >
  • The Six Barriers of Successful Communication
    In order to be successful, we need to be able to communicate well with others. There are many barriers that can cause breakdowns in communication, which you need to be aware of and deal with effectively.
    Read Article >

Looking for Communication Skills Training?

If you're looking to develop your Clear Communication Skills, you may find this Communication Skills Training Course beneficial:

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25 May
Birmingham M6 J7
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30 May
London - Central
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13 June
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