June 20, 2017
Every time a customer contacts your company, he or she doesn’t care what your title is, what your job responsibilities are or what department you’re in. Frankly, all your customer really wants to know is, “Are you willing to help?”
The words most dreaded by customers are, “That’s not my job. You’ll have to talk to someone in…(name the department here).” But even if you aren’t the person who will ultimately resolve that customer’s issue, you are making a lasting impression just by the way you handle that interaction. No matter what your job, you are the company and everyone who works there is all one team. That’s the way your customer sees it.
Research shows that 68 percent of customers who stop doing business with a company leave because of an attitude of indifference by a single employee. That person could be a CEO, manager, supervisor, human resource director or any employee because everyone within the organization is part of a customer service chain. If anyone in the chain weakens the link, the whole chain goes down—taking customer and employee loyalty with it.
Companies will continue to drive customers away until they start treating the causes of poor customer service and stop treating only its symptoms. Companies will lose customers and employees in record numbers unless executives evaluate their companies’ culture to identify root causes of their retention problems. Failing to have a policy of customer and employee loyalty is one of those causes.
The #1 loyalty killer is the difference between a customer’s expectations and his or her actual experience. Often, the worst offenders are CEOs and upper managers who do not give their employees the same caring service they expect the employees to deliver to the external customers. However, attitudes improve dramatically when employees see the CEO and top managers demonstrating great customer service skills, regardless of their department.Companies earn loyalty by consistently exceeding expectations through outstanding customer service. This can only be achieved when employees in every department are held accountable for their internal and external customer service skills.
Many companies provide customer service training for call center employees but not for employees in other departments. Customer service training needs to start at the top and be available to all employees. CEOs and upper managers must realize that their primary customers are their employees.