superior

Superior Customer Service: Think Care Not Guilt


I hear some customer service reps, agents, and analysts — even leaders — say that you shouldn’t say “We’re sorry” to customers because it means “we’re guilty.” There is even one consultant who has written a book with this same idea. The problem is, it is simply not true. It’s a myth and a costly mistake to make.


Sorry doesn’t mean guilty. It means we care. In fact if we are thinking about who’s guilty, we aren’t even in the zone of delivering superior customer service and customer experience.


Don’t picture this …



Superior Customer Service: Image is words Mea Culpa

Superior Customer Service: Sorry Doesn’t Mean Guilty Image via Istock.com





Picture this …



Superior Customer Service: Image is Balloons w/ Sorry Words Celebrating!

Superior Customer Service: Sorry Means We Care!

Grateful for both images from Istockphoto.com.



Superior Customer Service: Think Care, Not Guilt!

Superior customer service is never about guilt. It’s about responsibility, desire, and passion to serve and to care.

  • Sorry doesn’t mean guilty. When we offer condolences at a funeral, it doesn’t mean we are guilty. Sorry is one of the many ways to express empathy. We’re sorry for your _________ doesn’t mean we’re guilty of it.

  • When customers are upset with us, we are responsible (not guilty) for the less than satisfying experience they had. Let’s not back away or defend ourselves. Let’s make it an incredibly great moment that customers will remember. Studies show that outstanding service recovery skills often create some of the most loyal customers! Many customers believe that some mistake is bound to happen and they are wowed by great empathy and service recovery skills.

  • Thinking that sorry means guilty says we are thinking of ourselves instead of the customer. We have misinterpreted the customer’s outburst as an accusation against us. It isn’t. Customers want care and resolution. Give them an unadulterated full out “we’re sorry”. Give them full commitment to resolve the issue and loads of care.

  • Customers can get upset for many reasons. Don’t analyze whether they are valid reasons. Don’t analyze who’s at fault. Don’t act neutral. All of these are wasted time and effort. Go all the way and show them true empathy. Empathize emotions; don’t analyze them.


  • Humility is not humiliation. Humility allows us to put the customers emotional needs ahead of ours. We are the professionals. This is not humiliation — the driving emotion behind the guilty/sorry debate. The debate is useless. It sidetracks us from the main goal of delivering superior customer service, memorable customer experience, and retaining the customers.

  • Live with accountability not blame. We are responsible for delivering superior customer service experience. This is a far cry from being guilty when we miss the mark.



Remember, if customers are complaining to us, they’re still interested in our business. We have a chance to show we care. A chance to wow. Don’t blow this chance by withholding empathy. Give a caring “we’re sorry”. It’s not a shameful “we’re guilty.”


Apologize to customers if they had a less than stellar experience. It is a chance for us to reaffirm commitment with true empathy. It’s a chance to show just how much we care about them. It’s a chance to improve our business and wow the customers even more.


Short 2 minute video with inspirational message for leaders and teams to deliver superior customer experience!


Replace guilt with care. Guilt doesn’t belong in superior customer service. Care does. Create a customer-centric culture that brings them back for more.


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Post:
Leadership: Breed Accountability Not Blame
24 Customer Service Tips That Make Loyalty Easy
Superior Customer Service: 5 Ways to Stay Calm AND Caring w/ Upset Customers

©2013-2014 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

 

 

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Superior Customer Experience: Innovate for Integrity


Superior Customer Experience: Image is sign "The Way Forward"

Superior Customer Experience: Revenue AND Integrity Image via Istock.com

Image licensed from Istock.com


CBS This Morning Show featured the documentation that wireless providers have refused to carry cell phones that have a “kill switch which would allow consumers to deactivate their stolen smartphones. Why? Because it would reduce the need for cell phone insurance policies that they sell. In other words, they would lose revenue!

Tough choice for business leaders:

Revenue or the integrity to help customers have a superior customer experience?



For a consumer, losing a smartphone is a horror story. More than just the cost, the threat of identity fraud and loss of privacy from information stored is huge. It is a nightmare. It is the opposite of a superior customer experience.


When major wireless providers stop the broad use of a preventive powerful technology — e.g. the kill switch — just to preserve their revenue they are aiding and abetting a customer experience horror story. Is it any wonder that that wireless and internet service providers hold 9 of the bottom 10 spots in 2013 Temkin Customer Service Ratings?

Superior Customer Experience: Innovate With Integrity to Win

Telecommunications leaders in wireless and internet service may be trapping themselves by thinking of this dilemma as win or lose. There are not just two choices revenue (win) and integrity (lose).


There is a third choice — innovate for revenue and integrity. Instead of blocking a technology that relieves customers’ pain just to preserve revenue, start innovating the telecommunications industry to build new revenue streams.


Find the start-ups with proven concepts and inventions that can be your next big product or service.


Wireless and internet service leaders, do you have the strength and courage to switch to a new model of integrity that produces revenue? Or will you continue to block the switch that would help consumers and reduce smartphone theft?


Do what others leaders haven’t — reinvent your own industry to win big with new revenue and consumer gratitude. Superior customer experience and integrity sustain revenue they don’t kill it.


Integrity and revenue are not mutually exclusive. Do the right thing! Lead us to a new era of superior customer experience in the wireless world!

From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

©2013 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results. Kate also invites you to connect with her on Google+, LinkedIn, and Twitter. She welcomes your interaction!

Superior Customer Experience: Succeed Through Empathy.

 

Superior Customer Experience: Image is letter A+

Superior Customer Experience: Power of Empathy Image by SalFalco.

Gratitude for image by Sal Falco via Flickr Creative Commons License


When you think of superior customer experience, do you think of empathy?  Many people think of empathy mostly as something to relieve painful moments.

 

The truth is that empathy also prevents painful moments. It establishes and celebrates connections. It creates outstanding experiences.

 

You deliver superior customer experience through empathy!

 

Superior Customer Experience: The Power of Empathy

When we think and act from the customer’s perspective, we are using the power of empathy. We are building bonds for success.

  • Empathy opens listening. Stepping outside of our own perspective through empathy, puts us in listening mode. This triggers the customer’s listening as well. BAM! Bonds for superior customer experience.

  • Empathy allows us to make it easy for the customer. When we design websites with empathy for the customers’ perspectives, we make it easy for them to buy from us. BAM! Easy is a big part of superior customer experience.

  • Empathy is the messenger of care. Every time customers interact with us, our words and actions must say “we care about you”. Empathy is that messenger. BAM! Care brings customers back because it delivers superior customer experience.

  • Empathy engages employees to deliver the best. Empathetic leaders inspire team members to be empathetic with customers. These leaders build a culture of care and model it to engage everyone to superior customer experience!

  • Empathy strengthens teamwork. Superior customer experience requires great cross teamwork through the company. When teams engage in empathy and see each others’ views, they can deliver that wonderful seamless trouble free experience every customer wants.


What threatens empathy? The myth that empathy means agreement. It doesn’t! Empathy means: “You matter. We matter. This matters. Let’s collaborate.”


If we think that empathy means agreement, we block our empathy when we don’t agree with someone. We stop listening and so do they. We actually create difficult moments — the opposite of superior customer experience. When we block our empathy, we block our influence.


When we consider others’ views before responding, we are using the power of empathy. When we think of the impact of our actions before making decisions, we are using the power of empathy.


Empathy is the applause for shared interests. It draws people together for infinite possibilities and bonds for tremendous success. It opens two-way listening and the doors to great partnerships.


Empathy is the engine of superior customer experience!


Will you offer examples of how empathy delivered superior customer experience in your life?


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™

Related Post:
People Skills: Empathize Before You Analyze

©2013 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results. Kate also invites you to connect with her on Google+, LinkedIn, and Twitter. She welcomes your interaction!

Superior Customer Experience: Fluency Requires 100% Listening


In part one of this series, I told a true story of how good customer experience turned bad because the business wasn’t listening to the customer. That large corporation missed out on valuable no-cost suggestions that would deliver superior customer experience.


There are none so stuck as those who will not hear. Don’t be one of them! Have your entire organization become and stay fluent in what the customer is saying.


Superior Customer Experience: Image is many ears.

Superior Customer Experience: Feedback Fluency Part II Image by KY_Olsen.

Gratitude for image to KY_Olsen via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Critical Listening Beliefs for Superior Customer Experience

It takes specific organizational beliefs to get all employees to listen to the customer.

  1. Customer feedback keeps the business alive. Although this may sound obvious, there are many businesses that don’t believe this. They write off suggested improvements as customer whimsy or a one-off opinion. Leaders must state and model that listening to the customer keeps the business alive. It delivers superior customer experience.

  2. All employees, regardless of title, can share customer feedback throughout the business. Silos, territories, politics stop employees from listening to the customer. They live within their job descriptions and the business loses out on no-cost opportunities for superior customer experience.

  3. Every employee is a customer advocate. If they aren’t, then your culture is not customer centric. It is company centric. How will you survive the new competitor who is listening to your customers?

  4. We aren’t here to maintain the present. We are here to create the future. Many employees who are not in the research and development part of your business don’t know this. Thus when the customer offers feedback for a superior customer experience, their minds tell them it’s not their job. We listen to whatever our minds tells us is important. Leaders must reinforce that it’s everyone’s job to listen to create the future.


Leadership Actions for Superior Customer Experience

As you develop the critical beliefs, take actions to support them. Else the beliefs simply become noise and blather that employees block out.

  • Engage employees opinions for improvements. Ask employees what the customers are saying. Actions speak louder than words and this action inspires employees to listen for customer feedback!

  • Have mechanisms for sharing feedback easily throughout the company. This is vital. Listening to the feedback is the first step. Sharing it facilitates superior customer feedback. Technology makes this sharing possible even in large organizations.

  • Encourage curiosity and teach all employees to ask great questions. What is the customer saying in a broader perspective? How can the feedback benefit our company and future customer experience? How can we reduce instances of the negative experience that spurred this feedback? How can we create superior customer experience from even the simplest suggestion?

    Be curious about how the feedback can be valuable! Customer feedback flops when employees are listening literally or defensively.


  • Stop reprisals on employees who highlight problems and solutions. If employees are punished for highlighting what needs to improve for superior customer experience, they won’t do it. Even when the top leaders model the critical beliefs noted above, managers sometimes take action against employees who highlight needed improvements. These managers mistake suggested improvements as an accusation of their managerial failure. Leaders, make sure you know what your managers are doing. Superior customer experience comes from inspired, engaged, empowered employees.



Get everyone listening to the customer. Break down the silos. Allow all to hear and use the free feedback for superior customer experience.

It’s a matter of today’s profitability and the company’s longevity. Companies go out of business when the customers’ needs and wants change and the company doesn’t!



What successes have you had getting real time customer feedback and using it to deliver superior customer experience?




From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™

Related Post:
Customer Experience Leaders, Remove the Never Ever Rules
6 People Skills Essentials to Seeing Others’ Views
Superior Customer Experience: Above & Beyond Question

©2013 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results. Kate also invites you to connect with her on Google+, LinkedIn, and Twitter. She welcomes your interaction!

Various comments on my last post — Don’t Fire the Customer, Fire Yourselves!showed that many use the phrase “fire the customer” as a display of power.


Leadership for Super Customer Experience: Turn Off the Power! Image via Istock.

In the aftermath of abusive customers or the challenge of clients who constantly change their minds, some leaders and business owners use that damaging phrase to validate the organization’s position and use it to re-motivate frustrated and demoralized teams.

Yet, the power playing approach leaves a trail of trouble for the teams, the customer service culture, and the company’s reputation and brand.

Turn Off the Power for Superior Customer Experience!

Power struggles establish the dynamic as right vs. wrong.

Customer experience is about perspective and connection.



Power words, like “firing”, conquer & crush.

Customer experience is about awareness, empathy, uplift, and success.



Power-based motivation like “employees first, customers second” sets up a win/lose mentality.

Superior customer experience is about win/win!



“When you lead and serve for power, get ready for a power failure!” There is no greatness in either/or.

Turn off the power struggles, power words, and power-based motivation. If you want to use power, give it to your customers to give you free feedback — communicated with basic respect.

Turn on the listening and learning. Turn on creative exploration for effective problem solving. Turn on innovative thinking for customer satisfaction. Turn on the honest diplomacy to set limits in abusive situations. Turn on the joy of delivering superior customer service.


Lead a culture of excellence for improved performance based in continuous learning — not in power.

How will you ignite the customer service greatness in your organization?

I welcome your perspective in the comments section below. And I am ready to help you the way I have helped countless others in the last 23 years.


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™

Related Posts:
Leadership success: Think Balance Beam Not Mountain Top
Super Customer Experience: Customers & Us in Harmony

©2012 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

There is a phrase becoming popular in the customer service world that threatens both the customers and all of us in the profession. It’s a phrase we need to decry and banish from our vocabulary especially in the powerful world of social media.

The phrase we need to remove is: “Fire the customer!”



Superior Customer Service: Remove Threat of One Phrase Image by:Quinn Dombrowski

This threatening phrase:

  • Diminishes our integrity instead of building trust
  • Undermines our caring purpose rather than succeeding through care
  • Broadcasts selfishness and greed vs. radiating greatness
  • Declares customer service to be a power struggle instead of a partnership
  • Makes all customers who read it more defensive instead of cooperative
  • Teaches a new generation of customer service professionals a skewed view
  • Projects a tug-of-war mindset rather than a winning collaboration




Are there times when we can’t meet a customer’s need or expectation? Sure.
Yet how we part company — and speak about — echoes our brand throughout the global reach of social media.

For those business owners proudly using the phrase “fire the customer” all over Twitter, Facebook, and beyond, it’s worth a moment to consider an alternative.

The times I have not been able to continue with a customer, I have said:

“Although I cannot meet your needs and must pass on this opportunity, I wish you success …”



I am not “firing the customer”, as the current threatening phrase likes to power tout. I am firing myself! How we say things in difficult moments affects the future of our brand.


Current customers and social media tell future customers what we believe; they wonder how we will treat them. Every tweet, every post, every statement tells the world what we think of customers as a whole.

Customers talk about us too; what they say is actually up to us!



I vote to give superior customer service — not to be superior over customers. What do you want customers to say about you and your brand?


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™

Related Posts:
Free Your Mind to Give Superior Customer Service in Difficult Situations
What Do We Want Customers to Feel, Experience, and Remember?

©2012 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

A recent CBS Sunday Morning Show featured behind the scenes details of derogatory names companies have for their customers.

Leaders, THE Threat to Superior Customer Experience Image licensed from Istock.




Some Wall Street firms refer to their investors as “muppets”.

Hillbillies - Infrequent Travellers

Airlines nickname their infrequent passengers “hillbillies or Clampetts” referring to the old TV show The Beverly Hillbillies.

They dub very frequent customers as “Platinum Trash”.

Credit card companies nail the tag “deadbeats” to their customers who pay their balance in full every month.


As a customer service/experience pro, I listened with some outrage, sadness, and then wonderment.

The leaders of these companies don’t get it  Even if they don’t use these words themselves, they have not done enough to establish a positive culture of valuing the customer.

THE Threat to Superior Customer Experience

Corporate Narcissism

Loving Everything But the Customer



Misapplied Thinking That Fuels This Threat

  • Freedom of speech. Freedom of speech does not justify hating the customers. If you cannot respect customers, then perhaps it’s best not to build your livelihood on serving them.

  • Bluntness relieves stress. There are days when individual workers may find working with customers frustrating. They may blow off some steam privately and offline to relieve the stress.

    Yet the leadership is there to correct that course to ensure it doesn’t become a culture of disrespecting the customers. Leadership is there to teach and remind everyone what it feels like to be a customer and what the customer means to the business.


  • Treat the employees well and they will treat customers well. Not necessarily. If leadership and employees treat each other well and collectively disrespect the customers, it will not produce superior customer experience. You cannot hide loathing.



I travel a great deal and can always spot flight attendants and hotel staff who think positively about the customers and those who don’t.

I’m not psychic. It’s in every gesture and word they say. It’s in their proactive help or their indifferent delay.

When company leaders tolerate thinking that degrades customers – even behind the scenes — they are agreeing to it. From thinking comes attitudes and daily behavior with long term strategy not far behind.


How Sad
Picture flight attendants thinking, “I wonder how many platinum trash I will grovel around today?” Can you imagine flight crews dreading the boarding process with so many hillbillies?

Will these crews come across as personable and caring or resentful, impatient, and patronizing?

Do the employees of credit card companies know the value of a customer who pays their balance in full every month? It would be much more valuable to have each employee know that than to foster or tolerate corporate disgust of customers. If there is no business value, why keep them as customers?

As for Wall Street, the world has witnessed the outcome of runaway disregard for customers and their money. From the epithet of investors as “muppets”, we can see the thinking that produced the second greatest economic crisis in modern history.


Good News
There are many companies who have established a customer valued culture that inspires the thoughts and the actions of all employees.

There are airlines now helping the customers as they traverse airport concourses as well as on the flights. They are using kool technology, like Ipads, yet realize that the care comes from the heart.

As other airlines redesign planes to have more economy plus seats with extra leg room in coach class and fully reclining seats in business first, hopefully they will redesign the culture to value everyone who buys and flies. Why improve anything for people you view as trash?

As companies like Ritz-Carlton, Nordstroms, and Zappos, and outstanding hospitals like St. Jude’s Childrens’ Hospital and magnet nursing centers continue to shine their customer care for all to see, we can encourage leaders in other companies to see the true benefit of a customer valued culture.



Call to Action
CEOs and their leadership teams of confused corporations would do well to look at how companies have embraced customer value.

Delivering superior customer service experience doesn’t come from fancy technology, or marketing, or metrics, or branding. It starts at the heart of how a company thinks about customers and brings that thinking to life in its strategy, policies, and interactions.

Thoughts breed actions and many companies ask customers for feedback on their actions. What are your customers saying about your thoughts and culture? That’s worth exploring.

I am honored and thrilled to be working with many companies and professional practices that want to move beyond surveys and go all the way to a customer valued culture.

April is customer loyalty month. Let’s get started!


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™

Related Post: Simply Great Choices for Super Customer Experience

Special thanks to CXJourney on Twitter for sending me the URL link for the airline story.

©2012 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. If you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please first email info@katenasser.com for terms of use. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on customer service & experience, employee engagement, teamwork, and leading change. Kate turns interaction obstacles into business success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

National Customer Service Week 2010 is coming to an end yet the endless demand for superior customer service lives on.  I continue to learn and build my expertise even after 20 years of working with customers across multiple industries.  To honor all who work with customers, I share the following insights to retool, refuel, and revive your spirit even on the toughest day.  I believe you will find inspiration in them for training the best technical support analysts and customer service reps.

In business you get what you want by giving other people what they want. ~ALICE MACDOUGALL

Inspiration for Training the Best

  1. Procedures and protocols can block listening. Life is not a protocol. Business is not a protocol. Customers don’t fit into protocols; they build our business. Listen and adapt to them!

  2. Compete against yesterday’s high point — not against each other. Some team members are motivated by competition. Replace competition between team members with competition against yesterday’s best service. Beat that everyday and watch service and teamwork soar.

  3. Impact beats intention. A Twitter colleague and employee engagement expert, Ava Diamond, wrote that intent does not equal impact. In customer service, I go further and say impact beats intent. Your words and actions must have a positive impact! Your intentions are of little value when the impact of your words was negative.

  4. An authentic smile changes everything. Yes, customers can tell when you authentically care and the smile (in person, on the phone, in online chat) is the window to that caring.

  5. Being positive to thorny customers does not teach them to be ruder next time. A technical support analyst asked me “Why does a difficult customer deserve to be treated well when s/he is acting badly? Read the answers here … 5 Things to Think With Difficult & Rude Customers.

  6. Empathize before you analyze. Verbalizing empathy and commitment to the customer paves a smoother road to problem solving.

  7. Kindness Transcends Constraints. A blog post by The Knowledge Bishop reminds all that kindness to the customer keeps the loyalty bond alive while you work to solve the customer’s problem.

  8. Scripts are a monologue. The best customer service is a dialogue.

  9. Personalize and localize for legendary service. When a customer gives you her/his name, use it when speaking to them. Else you are treating them like a data point. Secondly, learn, understand, and adapt to a customer’s culture. Here’s one positive step in that direction: Regional Differences in American Customers – What They Expect!

What would be your #10 for this list? It could be your original thought or a favorite quote. Leaders, share this list with your team as an inspirational exercise and have them create #10!


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach and customer service guru, continues on in her 21st year of inspiring teams in customer service and sales to transform their daily work to a constant celebration of success with customers. Her workshop Delivering the Ultimate Customer Experience is one you won’t want to miss!

The best language for superior, truly memorable customer service is the language your customer understands. If your reaction is “no kidding”, please give this topic another moment’s consideration. I am not speaking purely about languages like English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Russian, Swedish, Arabic, etc… I am not even speaking just about avoiding the use of slang expressions or your company’s many acronyms to ensure superior customer service.

The best language for superior customer service is language that describes your knowledge in ways that the customer can truly understand. It doesn’t matter whether you are delivering internal customer service to employees of your organization or external customer service to those that buy your products/services. If your customer doesn’t understand what you are saying, it isn’t superior customer service. I wouldn’t even call it customer service.

What does describing your knowledge in language the customer understands truly include?

Best Language for Customer Service Image By:Nancy Wombat

A. Explaining everything from the customer’s perspective and interest vs. your expert view.

B. Using online and print forms that speak to the customer not from your software system’s design. Have you seen many well designed forms — those that don’t need explanation?

C. Designing bills and other financial statements that present info a way a non-financial expert thinks. Bank statements often prominently display “average daily balance” at the end. The number I want to quickly see is ending balance not average daily balance. A hotel bill I once received at Mohonk Mountain House resort displayed the information as double entry accounting — credits/debits. My reaction was “Are you joking?”. Most non-financial people don’t think in terms of double-entry accounting and many don’t even understand double-entry accounting. The makers of Quicken financial software built their business around this simple fact.

D. Presenting website information — especially the online buying process — with words that customers understand vs. words that the finance and technology departments use.

Superior customer service requires that you communicate all your knowledge in ways the customer understands.

What other examples would you add to the list?


Kate Nasser, The People-Skills Coach, addresses all the frontiers of communicating with diverse customers for superior customer service. Her newest training DVD Customer Service USA – What They Expect Coast to Coast & Everywhere in Between (click to preview) covers the regional differences throughout the USA and Canada to truly satisfy North American customers.