Ask anyone providing a service to customers. They will tell you that they understand the concept of “the customer is always right” and the customer is the most important person/company to their business and they consider themselves customer centric.
But realistically, the intent may be there but in practice it often gets lost. Part of the problem are the vagaries, Who really is a customer? What standards have we set? What can a customer expect from us? What is our commitment to the customer? Who do we direct a customer complaint to?
All these questions should have an answer and there may be generic or function specific answers. More importantly every employee should know the answer (and where to find it).
Has YOUR company produced a Customer Service Charter. A document informing customers AND staff of the standards for the relationship. Having one not only ensures the customer is informed but it also means there is a defined direction and protocols in dealing with customers. This is not an onerus task but it does have many benefits.
If you don’t have one, try draw one up for your own company/function? Aimed at the relevent level, it should contain:
- An introduction
- Your Mission
- The Outcome (or Goal)
- Your Values
- Your Commitment to the Customer
- How Customers can provide feedback
- How Customers register a complaint
Staff now have something to work with, customers also get that warm fussy feeling knowing that you are not only professional but also considerate in the service you provide – you have formalised a way of LISTENING to them.
I am available if you would like some assistance in reviewing your needs and requirements.