Responding Quickly

impatientIn the days of texting, instant messaging, and tweeting, customers are getting more and more demanding about how long they will wait  – on the phone – getting an answer back – or a product they ordered.  Couple this trend with the fact that many businesses are operating with less than full workforce – we have a major customer service challenge!

 We’ve been talking about Garold’s service to me when I called to ask about a part for a drawer. This is great service – I received a call from Garold within hours from when I contacted him!  

 Perhaps one inexpensive way you can honor your customers is to create a culture where both external and internal customers will get a call back from a customer request within 24 hours.  Sound impossible?  Over 15 years ago, this was the philosophy that Federal Express taught every employee and their business results showed.  What can you do in your business to equip your “customers” with what they need to be able to respond quickly?   Here are some ideas:

  • Providing customer service reps with an easy reference tool to answer the most frequently asked questions
  • Training new employees on the value of responsiveness in their service to internal and external customers
  • Establishing easy performance measures for such things as how long a phone rings before someone answers, how long a customer needs to wait before an acknowledgement, how long a customer waits for a response

Creating a Service Experience

Drawer A few months ago, my husband and I had a wonderful experience of service.  I had purchased a bedroom set back in 2006 and unfortunately, one of the drawers in my dresser broke.  We went back to the store where I had originally bought the furniture, were told to order a new drawer glide, and ordered it from a hardware store, (who had ordered it from a local manufacturer, Accuride).  However, upon receiving the part, my husband couldn’t figure out how to attach the glide to the drawer.  I called Accuride and left a message with one of their representatives, Garold Harford.

What Garold did in just a few simple actions helped transform an ordinary service transaction into a memorable service experience.  In the next four excerpts we’ll be dissecting all the small behaviors that Garold did for us and I bet you can apply these actions into your own business.

 The question for you to ponder for today is this  – how can you transform ordinary service encounters into true service experiences?