Customer Service is Not a Department

Filed Under (OP Sales Training) by Don on 14-04-2008

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It’s an ATTITUDE! A customer centered attitude that takes humility, tact, passion, kindness, understanding and empathy.  I always loved the phrase “customer care” because it depicts the “care” that is required to sincerely understand the wants and needs of the customer.  To truly have good customer service and support you must genuinely care about people and you must have a subservient attitude.  Look at it this way, do you go to the doctor for “service”? No, you go for “care”.  Your car gets serviced but people get care.  When you call an company with a product or service issue you hope that you get someone on the phone who will care about you and solve your problem. 

I’m sure you remember the “Golden Rule” of your childhood.  Some people say it sould be re-written to reflect our culture.  That’s a load of bull-bleep.  It says what it says for a good reason. You treat others with the same care and respect that you want in return, plain and simple.  But don’t make the mistake of disconnecting your customer care people with your managements goals and principals.  To often we read and hear advertising about how much a company’s people care about their customers but when you shop in their store you discover that their people are rude, they ignore calls for assistance and often have a lack of product knowledge.

Use your CRM system to it’s fullest capacity.  A great CRM package lets you log as much information about the customer as your fingers are willing to type.  It’s more than just a contact database, it’s a customer care database.  An effectively managed CRM system gives you insight to the customers needs.  But the system is only as valuable as the information you enter into it.  The Goldmine product integrates very well into many of the backend systems that independent dealers use but to fully recognize the true value of this product it needs information.  This information pipeline is a valuable tool for sales and customer service people and when used to its fullest can become a valuable marketing/sales tool.  But the need to use this product or anything else has to be a culture and directive that comes from upper management.  Staples has been very successful using their CRM system and recognized early on the value of CRM.  So can you!

Customer care comes from customer champions like you and I. If we don’t care about the customer, who will? And when the rude customer calls with more issues and problems that Webster’s has words just remember to “kill” them with kindness. A little love goes a long way.

The last word, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people.” -Colossians 3:23