What makes great service?

If you want to build strong relationships with your customers, you need to establish certain customer service skills. Your customer service is essential to running a successful business. Luckily, there are a few skills that anyone can master that will dramatically improve their conversations with customers.

Here are 10 skills that will help you to master customer service:

1. Patience

Patience is important to customers, who often reach out for support when they are confused and frustrated. Great service always beats fast service. If you deal with customers on a daily basis, be sure to stay patient when they come to you confused and frustrated, but also be sure to take the time to truly figure out what they want.

2. Attentiveness

The ability to really listen to customers is so crucial for providing great service for a number of reasons.

Not only is it important to pay attention to individual customer interactions (watching the language/terms that they use to describe their problems), but it’s also important to be mindful and attentive to the feedback that you receive at large.

3. Clear Communication Skills

Make sure you’re getting to the problem at hand quickly; customers don’t need your life story or to hear about how your day is going. When it comes to important points that you need to relay clearly to customers, keep it simple and leave nothing to doubt.

4. Knowledge of the Product

The best forward-facing employees in your company will work on having a deep knowledge of how your product works.

It’s not that every single team member should be able to build your product from scratch, but rather they should know the ins and outs of how your product works, just like a customer who uses it every day would.

Without knowing your product from front-to-back, you won’t know how to help customers when they run into problems.

5. Ability to Use “Positive Language”

You need to have the ability to make minor changes in your conversational patterns that can truly go a long way in creating happy customers.

Language is a very important part of persuasion, and people (especially customers) create perceptions about you and your company based off of the language that you use.

Small changes that utilize “positive language” can greatly affect how the customer hears your response…

6. Time Management Skills

There is a limit on how much time you should spend with a customer, and you need to be concerned with getting customers what they want in an efficient manner.

The trick here is that this should also be applied when realizing when you simply cannot help a customer. If you don’t know the solution to a problem, the best kind of support member will get a customer over to someone who does.

Don’t waste time trying to go above and beyond for a customer in an area where you will just end up wasting both of your time!

7. Ability to “Read” Customers

You won’t always be able to see customers face-to-face, and in many instances (nowadays) you won’t even hear a customer’s voice!

That doesn’t exempt you from understanding some basic principles of┬ábehavioral psychology and being able to “read” the customer’s current emotional state.

This is an important part of the personalization process as well because it takes knowing your customers to create a personal experience for them.

More importantly, though, this skill is essential because you don’t want to misread a customer and end up losing them due to confusion and miscommunication.

Look and listen for subtle clues about their current mood, patience level, personality, etc, and you’ll go far in keeping your customer interactions positive.

8. A Calming Presence

You need to be able to stay cool under pressure and have the ability to stay calm. Often personalities like these are able to positively influence others around them when things get a little hectic.

9. Tenacity

Call it what you want, but a great work ethic and a willingness to do what needs to be done (and not take shortcuts) is a key skill when providing the kind of service that people talk about.

Many memorable customer service stories out there, were created by a single employee who refused to just do the “status quo” when it came to helping someone out.

10. Willingness to Learn

This is probably the most general skill on the list, but it’s still necessary.

Those who don’t seek to improve what they do, whether it’s building products, marketing businesses, or helping customers, will get left behind by the people willing to invest in their skills.

 

19 January 2018