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Six Steps to providing Superior Customer Service

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The current global economic down turn is increasingly putting pressure on businesses to provide superior customer service. The problem is how to get employees of companies to operate on the same wavelength as their managers in terms of providing superior customer service. How do we get employees to see providing great customer service as the main reason for working for the organization? Here is a six step guide to ensure that your employees provide superior service to your customers.

1.            Talk to Customers and Employees:  It’ s strange but true even in this 21st Century, most businesses talk about customer service without hearing from the customer what  aspects of service delivery that are of utmost importance to them.  Service excellence means different things to different people. Even for the same customer, it may mean different things on different occasions. For hospital clients, customer service may mean quality of attending physician or Nurse while for air travelers, customer service may mean safety. For the bank customer, it may mean ambience or timeliness in processing loan requests. It is critical to find out aspect(s) of service delivery that are of utmost importance to the customer.  This exploration must be done with your employees on board. After finding out what is important to the customer, it is time for the organization to craft how to provide a superior service experience to the customer.

2.            Train Employees on Customer Service: Once the organization has designed a system that provides superior service experience for its clients, it is time to train its employees on customer service and how to delight the customer. Training is key to getting the employee to deliver the promise that top management made to clients and its value cannot be over-emphasized.

3.            Set Service Goals and Rewards: The next step in the superior service delivery process is to set service goals which must be in tandem with the service dimensions preferred by the customer along with the rewards and of course sanctions for employees who meet/exceed or fail to deliver them. Rewarding employees who meet those service goals while sanctioning those who fail to meet them will help entrench a culture of high performance in the organization

4.            Observe and Measure Service Quality:  Measure the service quality delivered to your customers. In measuring customer, it is vital to involve customers so that you measure what is valuable to them

5.            Hand out the Rewards: Hand out rewards and sanctions to deserving employees to instill a culture of service excellence in your business

6.            Return to the Customer: Finally, return to the customer quarterly or annually to report your service delivery process/progress and find out new dimensions of customer service required by her.

 

The Author, Dr. Kennedy Ononaeke, a business growth strategist  is the Managing Consultant /CEO of Winning Edge Consulting Limited, a healthcare consulting and training firm.

Enterprise Development Centre

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