Everyone has an opinion about customer service, good or bad; and with most people experiencing it on a daily basis there are many of us who could make a real difference if they had the opportunity, by taking up a customer services role. Katrina Raposo, Acorn’s Regional Manager for South Wales, shares her thoughts in the company's monthly echo column about what you need to do to start a career in customer services.
Good customer service is crucial for business success and comes in many forms. Whether you deal with customers face-to-face, on the phone, or via social media, you’re ultimately responsible for representing and selling the business you work for, and ensuring that customers have a positive experience in return.
Fundamentally you are an ambassador and your efforts and interactions will embody how a customer views the organisation you work for. Excellent customer service is priceless and can be the difference between making or breaking the opinion of a business.
Most jobs today have some element of customer service within the role, however if you have a passion about providing a good service and are not in a position to do so, today is the day to switch.
I’ve pulled together six tricks of the trade to ensure you are the perfect fit for a customer service role:
Prospective customers are much more likely to engage with someone that they can establish a rapport with. It may be a challenge to remain approachable on a wet winter morning, but if you adopt a cheerful and positive disposition, you are much more likely to make a massive difference to the customers you are dealing with. Remember, a warm welcome can instantly make people feel more positive to you and the business you are working in.
This skill is vital and transferable to all different types of industries. Speak clearly and loudly enough to be heard using positive language, in an upbeat tone. This is essential both in person and on the phone. It also still stands in written correspondence – make sure your grammar is correct and what you’re saying is clear to the customer you are liaising with.
Take the time to listen and identify the needs of the customer you’re speaking to. Customers will feel valued and appreciate it much more if you demonstrate that you have heard their query or concern and understand exactly what it is they want actioning.
Know the business you work for inside and out. This will help you show customers that you are an expert in your field and can answer their questions directly. The more you know about the products and the company you are working for, the more helpful you can be.
Trust is crucial to good customer service and if you stick to your promises, people are more likely to believe you when you say you will address their queries or concerns. Don’t make promises you can’t keep – avoid making a rod for your own back.
Ensure you are dressed appropriately so that customers feel at ease – people often respond better to an individual who is well turned out. Ultimately, positive body language is the best thing to adopt, as it will leave a long lasting impression and speaks volumes to your customers.
Do you have what it takes to deliver exceptional levels of customer service? If so, put these tricks into play today.
* Katrina Raposo has more than 16 years’ experience as a recruitment professional and joined the Acorn Group in 2013.