Wacky Ways

What wacky thing can I do today to make your day amazing?

When I’m not writing, I’m working. I have been in customer service for 25 years. I did the A-Z’s of customer service as a theme a couple years ago. One thing about customer service is there is always opportunity to learn how to do it better. It is ever changing. The room for improvement is never ending. If you have ever dealt with customer service on either side, I’m sure you will agree with me.

Sometimes after dealing with customers for so long, customer service representatives grow weary and complacent to just do what has to be done. That’s sad because the customer usually leaves satisfied, but not dazzled. They got want they wanted but it was mediocre at best.

You would be amazed how easy it is to make someone’s day by going over and above. Start by asking the customer “How can I make your day amazing?” Right away the customer knows you are there to help them and you want to help them. First impression means a lot because it creates an expectation of things to come.

Listen to the reason the customer contacted the customer service department. In most cases it’s a problem. Customer service people don’t get a lot of “Oh I just wanted to let you know how great your company is”. Once in a while we get those, but those are few and far between. Listen before responding.

Make sure you have all the details before you tell the customer what you can do. A lot of times customers will hold back with their issues and see how much they can get, and then they will add they had something else wrong. Make sure the customer has given you every detail of their issue before you try to make things right.

Most companies set up policies of what can be done to make the customer happy. There is a minimum and a maximum to close the sale. I know it is sad to say, but if you are in customer service you know it’s true … customer service people have the power to make or break a day.

If you have the power, you have opportunities to make that customer experience something that will go far with your company.  The company has researched this and they have set standards in place. You have power. A lot of customer service people think they are saving the company money by offering just what the customer is asking for instead of what the company has given them the capacity to offer.

Instead of giving the standard, go over and above. Give the high-end of the company policy scale. You are not in customer service to save the company money. You are there to make the customer happy.  You want that customer to come back to the company over and over again. That’s why the company has those policies in place. That’s why they hired you. Go over and above, impress the customer with unexpected service. The customer might forget what their issue was that they had with the company, but if you dazzle them, they will never forget how you made them feel.

I think this is the downfall of customer service. Too many people in the position take it personally, as if it’s their money they are handing out or they have an opinion on a stand. Just because you work for a company doesn’t mean you subscribe to their views or their stand on politics or religion or whatever the case may be. You are in the position to satisfy the customer and make the customer happy. Why not go over and above and give that customer service like they have never had before? MAKE THE CUSTOMER HAPPY.

What wacky thing can I do today to make your day amazing?



Ink Blots

Ink Blots

– not the ink blot test, however, I am an optimistic =
“Random thoughts from customer service”

It takes a special person to be a customer service agent. Unfortunately too many people who do work in customer service do not take their job seriously. I spent my whole lunch hour on the phone for an appliance yesterday and there was no resolution. The agents transferred me from one department to another, and every time I got a different person, they told me they had no control over what I was asking for.

I’m guessing that’s why I was put in the customer service position I was put in. To experience my frustration with customer service on the other side of the phone call. I’m not sure. I think a lot of people become burned out from doing it too long. Customers can be rude and insensitive. We, who take pride as customer service agents, will consistently put ourselves in our customer’s shoes, show empathy, own the call and make it right with even the most wrong customer on the planet. Trust me when I say, there are a lot of WRONG customers even though they will give a dissertation about how right they are and how much money they spend with the company and blah, blah, blah.

• A piece of chocolate with my coffee helps me smile when I take my calls.
• It is not my fault you waited fifteen minutes on hold before you got me.
• Don’t shoot the messenger, I only can do what the policy says I can do.

We live in a world of work at home jobs, where so many companies outsource their customer service department to teams of agents who have not been properly trained in the product they are answering for. As customers we have to be patient and show restraint when we want to tell the idiot on the other end of the line they don’t have a clue what they are talking about and they would be better off going to flip burgers at McDonald’s. As customer service agents, we have to be patient and show restraint when we want to tell the idiot on the other end of the line that they may be the customer, but in our world the customer is not always right and the policy stands. And, “No you cannot have one million dollars for pain and suffering after waiting in the drive-thru line twenty-two minutes to get your morning latte.”

• Work politics suck.
• Customer service is pretty much non-existent, (unless you get me).
• A lot of people should not be allowed to have smart phones.

In conclusion I would like to say if you are calling for customer service, be nice. As that saying goes, honey works better than vinegar. If you already are in a bad mood that person you get is not going to be eager to help you fix your problem. If you are a customer service agent, smile when you answer the phone. There has to be some give and take on both sides of the call. You both can’t be right, but if you work together there can be a like-minded resolution.

• If you want to take the Ink Blot test to find out what kind of person you are, click here.


Zoo Zone

CSA’s must be a little zany
‘Else one is deemed to be just a trainee
We strive for perfection quite like zenith
Able to handle the worst Goliath

Satisfy the customer in the Zoo Zone
Careful not to urge the testosterone

Zombie on the line trying our patience
Tolerate the crass with certain cadence
Pushed to the limit by a scalawag
Some wacky tobacky in a zig zag

We serve our customer in the Zoo Zone
Being fully aware of our voice tone

Offer up some homemade zabaglione
Perhaps a free ride on a Zamboni
Invite the customer with zealous appeal
Satisfaction is hopeless without zeal.

Some days we’d like to be left all alone
But we’re loyal servants in the Zoo Zone.

Footnote: This year I decided to go with the A-Z of Customer Service. I’ve complained too long that customer service isn’t what it should be. Tell me God doesn’t have a sense of humor. He put me in a position make a difference in what I think customer service is and should be. This month I will share with you what I’ve learned about successful customer service. Hope you enjoyed the ride.  Love to hear all about your customer service experiences from both points of view.  Share them in the comments section below!