Customer service remains one of the most vital aspects of running a business. Even in a world where technology is rapidly changing how we communicate, people still value good customer service above all other aspects of using a company’s services or buying a product. However, reaching high standard of customer service can take time. When businesses provide their employees with Customer Service Training they should not overlook development of these essential skills.
First and foremost, your employees need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively with customers and clients. The essence of good customer service is resolving problems and going the extra mile to meet customer’s needs, so your employees need to know how to get straight to the point whenever there is a complaint. However, they also need to balance being direct with being friendly and approachable to build relationships with customers and encourage them to return to your business. Finding this middle-ground can be difficult but people with good communication skills should be able to achieve it.
Working in a customer-facing environment can be challenging at times. Remaining positive in all situations is an essential skill for delivering excellent customer service; the moment you let your emotions get the better of you, is the moment that you lose a customer. In addition, when dealing with problems, it’s important to put a positive spin on your language to avoid drawing attention to the inconvenience caused. For example, stating that an item will be available next month, instead of saying it’s not available now.
It is difficult to provide good customer service if your staff can’t provide the answers to customers’ queries. Regardless of your sector, everyone who is dealing with people on a daily basis should have a deep understanding of how your company’s products work and why they are beneficial to the customer. Extensive training and additional resources may be required to hone this skill over time.
Spending a considerable amount of time with customers, or talking to them on the phone, is important for building a relationship. However, it’s important for your staff to be able to draw a line between being friendly and being efficient. Good time management skills are vital for being able to know when you’ve done all you can do help a customer and when there is simply nothing more you can do to help. Don’t waste customer’s time, this won’t help you to gain a favourable reputation.
In an environment where you are working with unpredictable customers, you and your employees need to be able to take control of any situation quickly and politely. Being assertive doesn’t mean being aggressive or controlling, it simply means being direct and focussed when dealing with customers so you can lead the situation in the direction you want it to go in. This is a skill which only comes with confidence and experience, so new employees may need time to learn their role before they can deliver effective, assertive customer service.