What qualifies as good customer service? How is that different from great customer service? Does it take the same amount of effort for us to be “WOW-ed” when we’re buying something worth a few dollars versus a larger or more expensive purchase? Is it only at the spa that we really feel spoiled? All of these are valid questions, and important ones to qualify within a particular business.
If you are a customer, try and keep your expectations realistic – the staff at Starbucks can only do so much to blow you away in the few minutes it takes to make your $5 latte. It’s more likely, and more in line I think, that you’ll feel really spoiled when you buy designer clothing or a new car, don’t you think?
If you are an employee, make sure you know what applies where you work. What does your boss expect you to do to deliver good (as in, acceptable) service. And how have the powers-that-be empowered you to offer great service (what I call a WOW). At some businesses, they are aiming to offer the WOW level as often as possible. In some high-end businesses where customers are spending a great deal or are loyal customers then a WOW is often expected – by the business and the customer – every time. After all, that is one of the ways you make, and keep, loyal customers.
If you are a boss, I hope you check in with your employees, to know they understand and can execute your service standards. Do you have mystery shoppers? Is there ongoing training to develop skills for your staff so they keep motivated and inspired? Do you have the kind of people employed who enjoy making other people’s day?
Here’s an added wrinkle… how about customer service for online business? If you allow your customers to buy online, what do you do to offer them a WOW? You can employ many of the old-fashioned methods in this new technology and be very successful. Usually it takes a combination of offline support from employees with a great online system, as one fellow blogger, Tony Logue, discovered. Read his post on an experience buying online and then following up in the retail store, called “Tony Burch sells $300 Coronas” .
I do hope, as Mr Logue comments, that Tony Burch employees all operate in the same way as Michelle, with whom he dealt. But at the very least, I applaud her initiative and follow up to ensure she WOWs her customers. I would bet she is a happy lady, and well paid if she works on commission!