“Quality in a service or product is not what you put into it. It is what the client or customer gets out of it.” ~Peter Drucker

You might not like this very much, but you will see the word “you” quite a bit in the next few moments.  Not “you” in the personal sense, but definitely “you” in the business sense.

Any business with customers is in the customer service industry. Which pretty much includes most, if not all businesses, and most, if not all of you.  No matter what you do in the business world, it will be necessary to deliver good if not great customer service.  For some of you it may be every day, and for others, maybe just a few times a month.  Nevertheless, you still have to deliver.

Unfortunately, when it comes to delivering quality customer service, some people, and some companies are simply more skilled at it than others. And to be honest, great customer service isn’t good enough anymore. Businesses that stand out from the competition do so with excellent customer service.

This is where you come in.  It doesn’t matter if you are an Owner, Executive, Middle Manager, Front Line or Back of the House employee, how you deal with the customer, both internally and externally, is key. Dealing with the public takes special skills when there are problems to be resolved, and as I’m sure you’ve experienced, not everyone is cut out for the job.  How many of you have refused to return to a business because of the way you were treated? I know I have.  Just yesterday, I walked out of a retail store because the salesperson was too busy texting on his phone to be bothered helping me locate a product.

This is why the attitude and approach that is taken with customer service is so important. You and your employees must want to engage with your customers, must want to deliver a superior product and must want to make sure your customers remain loyal.

Delivering superior customer service begins with the hiring, and continues with the training. There is a great quote that goes “Hire for Attitude, Train for Skill”, and for most businesses that should be their mantra.

And while the title of this piece is “Creating The Experience of a Lifetime”, it’s important to remember that not every experience will be so grand.  You can start with “Creating The Experience of the Moment”, because no matter what business you are in, you have the power to create moments that your customers could remember for the day, the week, the month or longer.  Not only will they remember the moment, but they will remember how it made them feel.  That could last a lifetime.  And that is what will keep them coming back over and over again.

We have developed a four-step process to help companies, both large and small create a More Than Perfect™ Customer Service Model.  These four steps include:

  • Assessing where your Customer Service standards are right now
  • Developing policies and procedures that align with your company’s vision, while establishing customer expectations
  • Training of employees to deliver those expectations
  • Gathering customer feedback to evaluate, improve and exceed those expectations

 

Customer Service is just one part of the Customer Experience, but it is an integral part. When this four step model is implemented correctly, it helps create those experiences of a lifetime. For more information about assessments and other resources you can use to help give your customers the ultimate experience, you can click here.  This is the foundation on which to build a loyal, vocal customer base that will sing your praises for all to hear.  And it all begins with you.

Paul Rutter is a customer loyalty, repeat business and customer service expert, a keynote speaker, corporate trainer and business author. He has had the unique opportunity to live with his customers and co-workers for months at a time traveling the world, and shares his experiences with land based businesses. For more information on More Than Perfect® Service, contact Paul at Paul@PaulRutterSpeaks.com, follow him on Twitter on @RealPaulRutter or visit him on Facebook/PaulRutterSpeaks.

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