Giving Solid Customer Service — That is the requirement

I’ll admit up front that this post has nothing to do with technology. However, it has everything to do with communications, contact centers, and customer service.

I’m going to build on a good post from Matt Taylor in April 2010 titled, "Excessive Customer Service blah blah blah" http://www.inin.com/Blog/archive/2010/04/21/pet-peeve-excessive-customer-service-messaging.aspx In the post, Matt talks about his over-done experiences at fast food drive-thru windows. Though different, my experience was equally annoying and offers a similar lesson.

I was staying in a hotel as part of a conference group last month. I’ll forego mentioning the hotel name, but it is a chain that prides itself on delivering superior service. At dinner, in response to just about everything I said, the response was, "You’re so very welcome." By the end of the night, to me it sounded more like, "You’re sooooooo VERY welcome!!!" And the repetitive (not just consistent, but repetitive) use of the words "my pleasure" didn’t overcome the fact that at the patio restaurant the chairs at our table were wet, we didn’t get menus when we were seated, and an item was left off of one of our food orders. 

My point is that customers, including contact center callers, aren’t looking for bad service to be masked by some smiling person from happy-land who uses a lot of nice, well-crafted service phrases. Sure, be polite, but customers just want their problems solved and their concerns addressed. They simply want good solid service. This goes straight to the heart of the contact center. Make it a part of your focus and you’ll see your customer service scores improve.

Agree or disagree with me? Please comment.

Joe Staples —  A promoter of solid customer service