A standard can be defined as “the ideal in terms of which something can be judged”. We all talk about having great customer service standards- but what does that really mean? I would challenge you to think about your entire customer experience from end to end. Identify the points of contact along the way and how you can make it ideal. Meeting customer’s expectations is satisfactory, but exceeding them gives them something to talk about and remember you by.
Here are some points of contact you might consider:
- When they first contact you;
- When you answer the phone;
- When you contact them;
- How you deliver your product or service;
- How you give and receive information;
- How you handle problems or conflict;
- When they have to cancel or return something;
- When they have a special request;
- When they don’t need anything at all;
- When they order or re order something;
- When you invoice them.
Here are some aspects of that point of contact to consider:
- Do you smile and look them in the eye?
- Do you recall their names and their preferences?
- What is the tone of your verbal and non-verbal communication?
- How do you treat challenging customers and situations?
- As an annoyance or as an opportunity to learn and grow?
- Is the level of your customer service consistent, no matter which team member is providing it?
- What makes you different from all your competitors, and keeps your customers choosing you?
- Do you impress them with your knowledge, skills, attitude, and helpfulness?
- How do you leave them feeling?
Think of it this way: Every time you have a point of contact with your customer you have an opportunity to make a deposit or a withdrawal in their “emotional bank account”. When you make enough deposits to draw against – you earn the right to make the occasional withdrawal, which may come in the form of asking for a referral, a repeat order, or forgiveness for a mistake or delay. Make it your goal to always be building a healthy balance, and they’ll keep coming back.