10 things that confirm your customer service sux

Shocked monkeys.jpg

I recently had a call from a HR Manager desperately seeking help with some customer service issues in the business. When I asked what the problems were, the frustrated and very passionate lady took a deep breath and unloaded the following;

  • One employee, although great at the tasks of her role, is considered rude when interacting with co-workers. 
  • Some employees find difficult customers just too difficult to delight, so they don't try.
  • One of the Managers is part of them problem - they don't practise what the business preaches when it comes to service excellence.

In all honesty, this is a very common  scenario and it prompts someone in the business to call me and their hope is that Lightbulb Training Solutions has the answers....and they hope the fix won’t take too long or cost too much.

In the world of workplace training, that’s called putting a Band-Aid on it. Band-Aids by their very nature are a quick, cheap and easy to use solution; but they won’t fix a broken bone. As a Service Excellence Coach, I do not use or recommend Band-Aids for broken bones and customer service problems are broken bones.  

How do you know if your customer service sux? How do you know if your team has broken customer service bones? What are the signs?

Here are the top 10 things to look for:

  1. Staff are not getting along. Grumbling about each other and not working well together.
  2. Staff complain about customer behaviours. Staff expect every customer to be polite and friendly.
  3. Your staff and your customers seem “lifeless”. No smiles, no eye contact, no warmth.
  4. You don’t have repeat customers. They never come back.
  5. Your customer areas look drab. Out of date magazines, shabby furniture, stained carpets, crumbled brochures, marked walls.
  6. Customers don’t compliment your staff on their service. Regularly.
  7. Customers don't refer new business to you. You spend all your time wondering how to get more customers.
  8. Staff don’t come to you with ideas of how to delight your customers. They serve but they don’t observe.
  9. You spend time wondering how to get staff to provide consistently excellent service. You think it’s up to you to educate and motivate them.
  10. Staff don’t proactively seek ways to improve their service skills. They think it’s up to you to educate and motivate them.

If you want a business that staff love working in and your customers love to tell everyone about for all the best reasons, then you need to put customer service training at the top of your list of things to do and not just 1 session. 

Why? Because nothing sells and nothing satisfies more than a team of Customer Service Professionals.

By Cate Schreck -  Service Excellence Coach and Author of "The A-Z of Service Excellence"