You get what you want You have no problems in the process, service or product Your problems are resolved quickly You feel people care about your problem or issue You feel like people listen to you You feel like people understand your issues, concerns …
Represents the organization Is often inaccurately perceived as: ◦ Having the power the solve a problem ◦ Holding accountability for a solution ◦ Unhelpful unless a problem is resolved Deals with a great deal of stress Is often frustrated by situations that are out of his or her control
Organizational policies and divisions of responsibility that may limit what you can do A Customer’s ◦ personality ◦ Past experiences with the organization ◦ social skills ◦ Mood Lack of access to information that could allow problem resolution
Ways to store, track, and access needed information, particularly about reoccurring problems Department or group agreement on defining and handling customer issues 1 Developing a support system for customer service providers to manage stress and personal impact Implementing specific communication strategies that may help you to deal with difficult customer issues
Recognize your sparking events…stay aware and think about 2 ◦ How you feel ◦ Physical changes ◦ Emotional changes Find response thoughts and behaviors to your sparking events…everyone is different 2 ◦ Relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises ◦ Positive thoughts ◦ Remind yourself of your goal ◦ Any other reasonable thought, activity, and prompt, that helps you
Do: ◦ Greet the customer enthusiastically ◦ Show willingness to help ◦ Show concern for the person ◦ Use positive language ◦ Focus on the solution, information, or answer Don’t ◦ Recite history of a policy or other customers’ issues ◦ Explain policies (beyond clarifying requirements) ◦ Point blame toward the customer or other areas of the organization (even if it IS someone’s fault) ◦ Expect to make everyone happy ◦ Take frustrated customer behavior personally
Indirect or factual statements are less emotionally charged E.g. This copy of your transcript indicates that you still need a course in this area vs. You didn’t take this course! E.g., The system indicates that this form is needed vs. You didn’t turn in your form. Positive reminders of your attitude may defuse frustration E.g., We will figure this out. I can help you. Repeat and clarify what you will do and what you need the customer to do.
Nonverbal behavior can often be as powerful as verbal behavior in sending a message…maybe more powerful. 2 ◦ Body language, eye contact, and tone of voice all send a clear message. ◦ Positive behavior may often attract positive reaction, negative behavior is likely to increase negative reactions
There is a sincere desire to help, regardless of how frustrated a customer appears to be. Empathy for the person is important when implementing customer service strategies. ◦ Trying to understand the other person’s feelings Positive attitude is likely to increase success Remember your goal! ◦ Serve customer, reduce stress (yours and theirs)
1. Begin with open-ended questions, then ask closed ended question 2. Demonstrate comprehension by repeating facts and summarizing main points 3. Distinguish facts v. feelings and improve understanding by asking questions
4. Verify perceptions by asking questions about your perceptions of the speaker’s feelings 5. Apologize and Offer alternatives if possible 6. Agree on a choice and then reiterate agreement on choice or actions 7. Thank, follow through, and do something extra if possible
Role play with another person. Take turns being the frustrated customer.
Review the skill set from time to time Support each other, give each other a break if you can Develop a group consensus on how to resolve issues Find what works for you by trying new ways to manage your stress such as self-talk, visualization, breathing, keeping a reminder note or motivation note near you, take a break, (no candy!).
Angela Young 323-343-2896 ST 704 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org See http://instructional1.calstatela.edu/ayoung3 for a copy of this presentation. http://instructional1.calstatela.edu/ayoung3
1) Service charters create staff buy-in and lead to better customer service. May 2010. Club Industry. Vol. 26, 5, p. 24. 2) Quinn, R.E., Faerman, S.R., Thompson, M.P., McGrath, M.R., & St. Clair, L.S. 4 th Edition. Becoming a Master Manager. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 3) Solomon, Micah. 5/3/2010. Driving customer loyalty with customer service. B to B. Vol. 95, 5, pp. 1-2. 4) Hot Under The Collar. 2001. American Media Incorporated.