Importance of Customer Service Essay example
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Importance of Customer Service
Today’s organizations fail to realize the value of their customers when it comes to the success of their business. Without customer loyalty the success of your business will always be uncertain. Organizations must sensitively tailor the designs of a successful firm to the particular challenges of understanding, attracting, and keeping valuable customers. “Having satisfied customers just aren’t good enough”. Kenneth Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles, co-authors of Raving Fans, believe this concept is needed to have a successful business. I agree with this concept of customers being the focal point of any business. I would want more than just a satisfied customer; I want a “Raving Fan”.…show more content…
Discover What the Customer Wants
After creating your vision, try to discover what the customer wants or what their vision is. The customer will focus on just one or two things and it will be up to you to fill in the gap with your vision. You will then pick and choose which ideas you want to use to complete or build up your vision. Not every idea of the customer will be used or has to be used. Some ideas may not be feasible or even applicable to what you have envisioned.
Deliver the Vision Plus One Percent
This is where the vision becomes reality; make it happen just as you envisioned it. Work out the bugs and keep doing what ever it takes to make this vision come alive. Start out with something small that you know you can maintain and be consistent with it. Once you have mastered that idea, add to it, make it better by just one percent. Continue to do this with each new idea, always producing better ideas by one percent. This way the customer is not promised something that you will not deliver and you’re not promising something too big or complex to consistently follow through with. Consistency is critical; it creates credibility.
I have always believed customers are the focal point of any business. I found that having satisfied customers does not mean you are doing a good job. It may mean the customers are satisfied because their expectations are so low and there is no one else doing any better. Having
Dealing With CustomersGood customer care is about understanding and meeting customers’ needs and expectations. The objective should be to win and keep customers.
Customers can be classed as internal or external. External customers include consumers or businesses who buy goods and services as well as suppliers to the firm such as agencies and lenders. Internal customers include colleagues, shareholders and other stakeholders.
Why is good customer service important?
Good customer service is important as it’s easier and cheaper to keep existing customers happy than to keep finding new ones. Word of mouth is a powerful method of marketing and a happy customer will most likely refer their friends and relatives to a company that they have had a good experience with. They will probably also be loyal and keep coming back. Conversely research shows that an unhappy customer will tell a minimum of nine other people about the problems they’ve encountered. Spreading bad news in this way undermines a business and damages its reputation.
Most companies have a customer services team who will be responsible for dealing with customer complaints and queries. However every member of staff needs to take ownership of customer care and be proactive when dealing with customers so that problems do not arise.
Under-promising and over-delivering is an often cited way to manage expectations and can be applied when dealing with internal colleagues as well as external customers. When working with or serving others we should put ourselves in the customer’s shoes and think ‘how would I like to be treated in this situation?’ and then deliver that. It’s also good to remember the classic Bananarama song title ‘It ain’t what you do; it’s the way that you do it.’
It’s not just about day-to-day activities however. The customer should come first in everything that an organisation does and this starts with business plans and policies that are customer centric. For example, companies should be asking themselves: are we selling products that customers want to buy? Are our systems and processes built around our needs or the customers?
Customers must also be considered when setting internal targets and key performance indicators (KPIs). A call centre may want to reduce its call waiting times and so target employees to keep calls short and answer the next call as quickly as possible. However this can have the knock-on effect of call handlers rushing calls and processing people rather than serving them. This means that they may miss opportunities and not provide extra information that could help the customer. A fast service can be at the expense of a quality service so things like this need careful consideration.
Training is also very important. Every employee must be aware of their company’s customer care values and be empowered with the knowledge, resources and skills to provide excellent customer care. There are many customer services courses available to help businesses train their staff. This can help give employees listening skills to understand what the customer wants as well as how to manage expectations and say ‘no’ when necessary.
At the end of the day the customer is the only person that can tell you what they want and how well you are doing at providing that. This makes research perhaps the most fundamental thing in providing good customer care.
Focus groups, surveys and testing panels are good ways to get to understand the customer and what it is that they need and expect. On-going research into satisfaction levels is also vital to give a company a feel for how it is doing. Mystery shopping and customer satisfaction surveys after the completion of a service or sale are useful tools, that once completed can be updated and used to set targets and measure performance against. Large-scale surveys in particular are great to identify areas of weakness that need to be addressed.
Source: Essay UK - http://www.essay.uk.com/free-essays/business/dealing-with-customers.php
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