During our recent online poll, we asked the following question:
What upsets you the most when receiving poor customer service?
Eighty percent of the poll participants said the “I don’t care attitude" of the person serving them upsets them the most.
Businesses lose billions of dollars of revenue each year because customers feel the organizations don’t care about their business enough to make an effort to keep them. It takes five times more effort to win over a new customer than to keep an existing customer.
Then why does this happen? No training or poor training has a lot to do with it.
Here are five secrets to showing your customers you really do care about their situations when interacting with them:
Take the time to listen to the “pain" the customer is trying to share with you. There is a reason why we have two ears and one mouth. Listen for the content and not the method of communication the customer is using. Use active listen skills such as
* Nodding your head
* Leaning forward to show interest
* Saying “I hear what you saying, " “I see what you mean, " or “tell me more"
* Stop doing something else and devoted all your attention to listening.
* Look at the customer
* Be patience and not interrupt the customer before adding your thoughts
You might be the first person that day that took time to listen to that person. Make the most of it.
Respond to the customer in the following ways:
* Use inflection in your voice (avoid sounding monotone)
* Don’t use “whatever, " “yeah, right, " “if you say so"
3. Check your body language
Make sure your body language is saying to the customer, “I want to help you. " Make sure you are doing the following:
* Stand erect
* Hands at your side, but never on your hips
* Avoid leaning against the counter or slouching in the chair (especially while speaking on the telephone as the customer can hear your disinterest)
* Look and act alive
4. Show Empathy (Understand the Pain)
Show the customers that you understand their “pain. " Make comments such as
“I can understand why you would feel that way. "
“If I were in your shoes I would feel the same way"
“I would be disappointed, too, if that happened to me. "
Most customers just want to be listened to and understood. Show them that you understand their “pain" and solution come much earlier.
5. Commit to Action
Let the customer know that action will be taken; and then act. One without the other is just a broken promise. Share with the customer your clear plan of action such as the following:
“I am personally going to take care of this for you. What we are going to do is…"
“I need to get additional information before I take care of this for you. I am going to talk with my manager. Would you mind waiting?"
These are just some of the tools you can use to keep your customers happy and increase revenues. Apply them today to show that you care about your customers.
Ed Sykes is a professional speaker, author, and success coach in the areas of leadership, motivation, stress management, customer service, and team building. You can e-mail him at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org, or call him at (757) 427-7032. Go to his web site, http://www.thesykesgrp.com , and signup for the newsletter, OnPoint, and receive the free ebook, “Secrets, Stories, and Tips for Marvelous Customer Service. "