When Customers ask – how can I help

This blog has more focus towards B2B  – After recently reading a number of articles on customer service I find there is a plethora of information but often this information is conflicting.  For example there are those that espouse the opinion that by having happy employees you will attain happy customers, others state that happy employees have nothing to do with happy customers.

One claim I read, there was research proving that customer’s who have experienced near perfect after sales customer service are more loyal than those that obtained a perfect product and had no need to contact customer service at all. Then there is the classical, identify your customer, identify what they value and then keep assessing their satisfaction. Does this mean always build in one flaw? (only if your after sales is great).

The quandary I have when reading these articles/thesis is that they are all correct –  sort of, but the proponents all appear absolute (all or nothing). Yes, it is about learning who your customers are and what they want, not being everything to all customers (or, knowing who you do want as a customer), making sure your staff are happy (they may not make your customer happy but at least they will not make them unhappy), and finally work WITH your customer.

After asking the standard question “what can we do for you”, find out how the customer can help you.  They may be doing something just because they always have or think its easiest for you. Discuss with them both side to the relationship there may just be that “A-ha” occasion and everything works better and everyone wins for example delivery sites/times, order timing, etc.

Yes it is all about really finding out:  who you want as a customer, what that customer wants, then what fits best for both – see if the customer can help you, do what you do better !