Ultimate Customer Service

Conquer Listening Barriers: Do You Get Stuck on Keywords?

Most everyone can list out common listening barriers. Surrounding noise, anger, and fatigue always make the list. You can conquer listening barriers like these with rest, settling the anger, and quieting the noise. There is one listening barrier that often operates without your awareness.



Getting stuck on keywords that you frequently hear.



Conquer Listening Barriers: Image is a head blindfolded w/ book attached.

Conquer Listening Barriers: Unstick from Keywords. Image by Cliff via Flickr.

Image by Cliff via Flickr Creative Commons License.


Conquer Listening Barriers: Unstick from Keywords

Think of words that immediately capture your attention. Do they also trap your listening because you’ve heard them so often?

Example:

As I teach technical support teams how to conquer listening barriers with customers, I give them this frequent customer request to assess:

The customer says, “I had trouble logging in all morning. Now I’m logged in and this isn’t working.” A few listen to whole description and aren’t blocked by the keywords ‘trouble logging in’. They work to understand what isn’t working.

Several get stuck on those keywords and mistakenly work on getting the customer logged in. Not surprisingly, the customer gets frustrated and upset.

—–

Conquer Listening Barriers of Keywords

  • List the keywords that most often trap your listening.
  • Question yourself when you hear those keywords to stop your assumptions.
  • Restate what you think you’ve heard. Other’s feedback helps conquer your listening barriers.



What keywords have blocked your listening?



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

Related Posts:

Listening Beyond Our Boundaries
Listening Responsibility: 5 Reasons People Interrupt Us

©2016 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.



QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Super Customer Service People Skills: Prevent Regret!

Super customer service has little room for regret. What we say to customers and how we say it leave lasting impressions. We can wound them with scars that last forever or we can use caring people skills to avoid laying an egg.

Super Customer Service People Skills: Image is Blue Egg w/ Letter R

Super Customer Service People Skills: Reverse Regret

Image licensed from Istock.com

In tough moments with customers, how can we speak with great people skills instead of regretting and hoping for that elusive second chance? Responding with care instead of defensively reacting is much easier when we are thinking about the after effects.

Instead of regretting, envision what you would write in a letter of regret and say that instead of your emotional reaction. Super customer service requires people skills that deliver care even in the toughest moments!


Super Customer Service People Skills – Prevent Your Regret!

  • Find empathy by imagining regret.

    The stress relief you feel by snapping at a customer is short lived. It is quickly followed by regret for your outburst. Reverse the regret process and feel empathy from the beginning. In tough moments, adapt don’t attack.



  • Imagine the caring you not the ego-controlled you.

    Many regrets are born of the need to be right, the need to be better than, the need to be selfish. In other words, regrets are born of the ego.

    Imagine yourself being great in service not needing to be right.

    Those who deliver super customer service, revel in helping others to succeed and thus they succeed. Their desire to care overrides their ego. They are humble enough to learn from the customer and don’t feel humiliated by the customer. They don’t say things to customers that they will regret for they envision receiving that very same care.


  • Prevent regret.

    Treat customers well the first time else there may not be a second time. Defensive thoughts and communication lead to regret. Stay open. Show empathy. Explore the customer’s view. Empathy doesn’t mean you agree. It means you matter, we matter, this matters! Through empathy you find how to wow each customer with care.


The old saying, the customer’s always right, has led some to rebel and claim it isn’t true. From there, they justify confronting the customer and saying things to prove the customer wrong.

The debate about that adage is out-of-date and quite worthless. What we all need to remember is that we may not get a second chance from customers we’ve treated badly. Think about it: Why would anyone pay money to be treated with impatience, rudeness and disrespect?

Empathize, explore, and stay open to customers’ views. Live no regret about customers for there may be no second chance to get them back.



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

Related Posts:
5 Ways to Stay Calm and Caring w/ Rude or Angry Customers
7 Ego Actions to Avoid for Great Leadership, Teamwork, & Customer Service
Super Customer Service: Be a Buoy

©2013-2016 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.



QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Managing Expectations: People Skills Global Twitter Chat Topic

WHEN: Sunday Dec, 13, 2015 at 10AM EST. Hashtag: #peopleskills


Here’s a time converter to assist all of you around the globe in converting 10am EST to your local time.


Background on This Chat Topic: Managing Expectations

One of the biggest challenges between people — in life and at work — is managing expectations. With friends, spouses, family, teammates, and customers, unstated expectations can create havoc and interaction difficulties. Join us in people skills global Twitter chat to explore managing expectations.



Managing Expectations: Image is the people skills logo.

Managing Expectations: Image by KimbManson for Kate Nasser. All rights reserved.

Image designed by: Kimb Manson Graphics Design for Kate Nasser. All rights reserved.


Managing Expectations: Why and How!

Most people have expectations of themselves and others. Is it more harm that good or more good than harm? JOIN us in #peopleskills global Twitter chat Sunday Dec. 13th as we explore this topic.

Some questions to get us thinking in advance. Actual questions will post live during the chat.

  • What is an expectation? Different from a need?
  • Where do expectations come from?
  • How do expectations get dashed?
  • How do you know when your expectations are different from reality? Are there warning signs?
  • What are the negative aspects of having expectations?
  • How have expectations helped you in your life and/or work?
  • If you could issue a decree about expectations, what would it be?
  • How can we unearth people’s expectations of us sooner than later?
  • What happens when we don’t understand customers’ expectations? How can we do this better?
  • What makes a leader not communicate their expectations? How does it make you feel?
  • How does fear of conflict affect expectations, if at all?
  • What lessons about expectations have you learned in your life?


So bring your personal perspective, your favorite beverage, and join the people skills global chat community this Sunday Dec. 13, 2015 10am ET on Twitter (hashtag: #peopleskills) to explore managing expectations.


I also invite you to continue this chat by joining the Google+ People Skills Community and the LinkedIn Group People Skills Succeed to be a part of all the people skills discussions everyday 24×7. Get your people skills community member badge here.



Shout Out of Gratitude

My gratitude to all who participate and grow the people skills global chat community on Twitter (#peopleskills), Google+, and LinkedIn. We welcome your suggestions for topics, offers to co-host, and most especially your individual insights.

Continued thanks to generous chat moderators Chantal Bechervaise, Dave Moore, Hoda Maalouf, Jandis Price and Tom Rhodes for their time and insightful contributions.






Hope you will all join People Skills Global Twitter Chat #peopleskills this Sunday Dec. 13, 2015 10am ET/7am PT / 3pm GMT to explore managing expectations.

Everyone is welcome! We have only one rule in People Skills Global Chat: Respect for all even when we disagree.







TIP: If you have never been in a Twitter chat, you may find it helpful to log on to Twubs.com or Tweetchat.com, enter hashtag #peopleskills, and sign in to your Twitter account. The venue will insert the hashtag on each of your tweets and you will see all the tweets on one screen. Other tools available are Tchat.io, Hootsuite and TweetDeck.

I am the founder and host of the chat and will be happy to answer any questions you have in advance: Email me.


Chat with you this Sun. Dec. 13, 2015 10am ET/3pm GMT in People Skills Global Chat on Twitter (#peopleskills) TOPIC: Managing Expectations.


Until then, as always, I wish you bonds of happiness and success!


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

©2015 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.

 

 

PS-EnergyBar-LogoJoin me through these social channels

Engage in people skills learning! Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience. I invite your questions, share my experience, and welcome your wisdom.

Rude angry customers don’t have to demotivate you and wear you down. Rude angry customers can actually be one of the best people skills learning experiences you will ever have.

How? It helps you to develop even more emotional intelligence. This will serve you well throughout your career and your life.   I have been teaching people skills, teamwork, and customer service for 25+ years. The right thoughts and mindset are crucial! It’s emotional intelligence in action.


Think these 5 things when working with rude angry customers for best results. It keeps you both calm and caring — a winning combination.


5 Powerful Beliefs to Win Over Rude Angry Customers

Practice these thoughts as a daily mantra and your outlook toward rude angry customers (and rude people in general) will change. Your people skills will blossom with these emotionally intelligent thoughts!

Rude Angry Customers: Image is flower with thorns.

Rude Angry Customers. Image by Yogendra174 via Flickr.

 


  1. Thorns don’t attack you; they protect them.
    Plants have thorns to protect them. So do people. When you hear a person’s thorns, recognize their fear and weakness. The thorns are not attacking you. They are protecting them. Do not attack them from your fear and you will not get pricked by their thorns.

  2. Easy doesn’t sharpen a thorn. One of the most common questions I receive is “If we are nice to rude angry customers, aren’t we teaching to be rude next time?” No! Your positive responses do not teach them to be thornier! Thorny customers are adults who make their own decisions.

  3. De-thorning them will hurt you! If a stranger tried to kick down your defense mechanisms (like your front door), how would you react? Fight back and defend? Well, the customers don’t have a family relationship or close friendships with you. To them you are a stranger. If you try to clip their thorns directly, they will defend and prick you back.

  4. Empathize w/ Their Emotion; Don’t Analyze Their Thorns! Trying to analyze a customer’s thorns in the few minutes you have to deliver service is not feasible or logical. It takes therapists years to analyze a client’s emotions. Yours is to deliver service, not to change the customer. Empathize emotion don’t analyze it.

  5. Positivity Beats Equality; Don’t be a Thorn! During a recent workshop a technical support rep asked me “Why do rude angry customers acting badly deserved to be treated well?”. I replied, “You treat rude angry customers (and all customers) well because it works. It gets you to the end goal.”

    Treating the customer badly will not get the customer to treat you well. More importantly, it will veer you off course from business success. Positivity beats equality as a winning strategy in customer service.



Be the sun, not the thorn. You can’t change people; you can change your beliefs and influence the outcome!



Tap into more of Kate’s playbook on delivering The Ultimate Customer Experience especially in difficult moments — click here.


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

Grateful for image by Yogendra174 via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Related Posts:
Customer Service: 24 Tips to Make It Easy For Customers
Super Customer Experience: 5 Immediate No Cost Improvements

©2010-2015 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 delivering the ultimate customer service, leading change, employee engagement, and teamwork. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.


QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Customer Service People Skills Timing: Sharpen Yours!

Did you think this post would be about how to deliver faster service? How to sharpen your metrics? Surprise! It isn’t. It’s about sharpening your people skills timing in customer service. What goes into it?



Customer Service People Skills Timing: Image is clock w/ different angles for numbers.

Customer Service People Skills Timing: Image fr Glenn Dettwiler via Flickr.

Image by Glenn Dettwiler via Flickr Creative Commons License.


Customer Service People Skills Timing: Strengthen Yours

  • Listening. Listening is the most important customer service skill. Listen for what customers are saying and what they aren’t saying. Listen for their sense of urgency. Listen for what they care about overall. Listen for their personality type and adapt to it. Your people skills timing will improve and so will your customer service.

  • Empathizing. Stepping outside of your own perspective and into the customers view hones your customer service timing. If you remain distant and detached, your timing will always be different from that of the customers. Empathize. It doesn’t mean you agree. It means you matter, this matters, let’s resolve it.


  • Sensing Pace. Every customer has a pace. You can tell from how they speak or write. To that end, sharpen your customer service people skills timing by catching how fast or slow the customers speak. It doesn’t always mean they are angry or happy. Some are high spirited, some are urgent, some just speak quickly, some just speak slowly. Adapt your pace to theirs and see the bonds form. Your influence gets stronger; your customer service improves.

  • Changing Your Rhythm. Customers judge your care and customer service by how well you adapt. Script readers do not impress! They sound fake and inflexible. Change your rhythm to fit the customer and the situation. It’s not difficult. If you are willing to adapt, you can do it. This is the ultimate in customer service people skills timing.



They say in life that timing is everything. Well it’s definitely true in customer service.



Connect with the customer’s vibe and they will remember and return.



What memorable customer experiences have you had?



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

Related Posts:
Checklist: Are You Driving Calm Customers Away?
Customer Experience Leaders: Remove the Never Ever Rules
11 Surefire Beliefs for Superior Customer Service Experience

©2015 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.


QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Customer Experience Leaders: Are rigid rules ruling (and ruining) your customers’ experiences?

If your answer is a quick “no”, I ask you: “Have you asked your customers?
If your answer is “not sure”, I ask you: “Have you asked your customers?
If your answer is a list of reasons why the rules are important, they are most likely ruining your customers’ experiences!

Customer Experience Leaders: Image is "STOP".

Customer Experience Leaders: Remove the Never Evers Image via Istock.com





Find and remove all the “never evers” that are not required by law or science!

Customer experience leaders, there are more never ever rules in your organization than you think. They quietly develop, take hold, and ruin customer experience — until you find and remove them.


The never evers – everything you don’t let customers do — lurk within your organization. They take root in the need for security. They develop as protection mechanisms. They thrive in blame cultures. They kill customer experience.








Great customer experience leaders remove these never evers!

  • The — it’s always been that way — never ever rules.
  • The leader’s never evers that serve their own personality, goals, preferences.
  • The team’s never evers that develop from a leader’s criticism or rebuke. Team members begin protecting themselves vs. serving the customers. Blame creates these individual protective never evers that sink customer experience.
  • The reactionary never evers that develop from a difficult interaction with a customer.
  • The silo never evers that evolve as different teams build walls between each other.
  • The deduced never ever rules that grow on the grape vine from poor or confusing communication from leadership.
  • The — we don’t trust our employees — never ever rules. These un-empowered agents and reps must say no to customer requests only to have the leaders say yes. For customer experience, it’s too little too late!


Customer Experience Leaders: Prevent the Return of Never Ever Rules

Never ever rules block superior customer experience. They almost always serve your company not the customer. They feed your failure and your competition’s success.

Replace the Never Ever Rules!

  1. Excavate all never ever rules.
  2. Identify the purpose of procedures and rules.
  3. Create a can-do culture of possibilities with what ifs, dialogue, listening and critical thinking.
  4. Replace silos with trust bonds built on a bigger purpose and honest communication with and among teams.
  5. Breed accountability not blame.



Take a lesson from companies like Zappos, Ritz-Carlton, Amazon, Nordstroms, and lesser known ones that have adopted a truly can-do customer experience culture!


Make sure that the sign your employees envision is “GO” not “STOP!”


What never ever rules have you found and removed in your organization and how did it help customer experience?

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

Related Posts:
Customer Experience: 24 Tips to Make it Easy for Customers
Are You Driving Calm Customers Away? Checklist to help you!

Image licensed from Istock.com.

©2013-2015 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.

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Customer Service Transparency: Trust Without the Fine Print

What customer service finger print do you want to leave behind after each customer interaction? Does your list include any of these?

  • Shadiness, doubt, mistrust
  • Selfishness, one-sided, controlling
  • Slick, fast-talking, slimy

If your customer service approach includes fine print, your brand’s finger print certainly could be!



Customer Service Transparency: Image is finger under magnifying glass.

Customer Service Transparency: Remove Fine Print. Image by Angela Prosper via Flickr.

Image by Angela Prosper via Flickr Creative Commons License.


Customer Service Transparency: Just How Valuable Is It?

Consider weight loss company Roca Labs who purportedly uses fine print agreements to stop customers from sharing negative reviews. CBS News reports that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is now suing Roca labs.

All of this begs the question: Why hide things in fine print from customers? Why would any company not declare its brand’s terms openly and clearly? Is it because they fear customers won’t agree to the terms if they understand them? The answer to that speaks volumes about the lack of customer service transparency of those companies.

Fine print has no place in sales or customer service. Show integrity and make your terms and expectations clear. Remove the shadow of the fine print and build trust.



Let customer service transparency be your brand’s finger print. It impresses with integrity. It builds trust and that is priceless!



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

©2015 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.

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Reverse Customer Experience: Retain Calm Customers!

When customer experience is going sour, do your calm customers have to raise their voice to get action? Do they think they must show anger to reverse customer experience from bad to good?

Reverse Customer Experience: Image is Iceberg Reflecting Deeper Trouble

Reverse Customer Experience: Don’t Drive Calm Customers Away Image by Drew Avery via Flickr.

Image by: Drew Avery via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Reverse Customer Experience: Don’t Drive Calm Customers Away

Consistently great customer experience requires may things. One often overlooked skill — hearing the urgency before the yell — is key. You can reverse customer experience midstream if you realize that not all dissatisfied customers yell.

Ask yourself, do your customers have to yell to:

  • Shake you out of your malaise? Calm customers often face lack of action or the dreaded defensive dribble of reasons why the experience is bad. Reverse customer experience from unimpressive to wow. Hear the urgency before the yell.
  • Hear some empathy from you? Empathy is that special connection with what a customer is experiencing. Can you hear their experience before they get upset? If not, you may lose calm customers to those businesses who give empathy before the yell.
  • Get you to explore alternate solutions? When the customer experience is bad do you stay safely in procedures — until the customers yell or tweet their anger?


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

1.5 min video message to reverse customer experience from bad to good.


The Story

I recently left a web hosting company because there was no response to trouble when I reported it without yelling. The rep actually said to me “There’s nothing we can do.” When I tweeted what he said to me, the response from the company via Twitter was immediate! They said, “we are working on fixing the trouble right now.” I had already faced the same trouble with little response over several months. Each time there was no attempt to reverse customer experience from bad to good — until I tweeted my displeasure. This is a sign of a company who doesn’t understand outstanding customer experience. They don’t live it or deliver it.

The Message

You can more easily reverse customer experience from bad to good IF you detect the trouble early. See beneath the tip of the iceberg. Don’t wait for customers to get angry. Hear their displeasure and their urgency even before the emotion and the yell.

When has a business failed to hear your urgency & displeasure? Share your story!


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

Related Posts:
24 Tips to Make the Experience Easy for the Customer!
Does Knowledge & Experience Dull Our Empathy for Customers
Free Your Mind to Deliver Great Customer Service Experience

©2015 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.

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Empathy: Key Thoughts to Boost Your Success

Empathy is one of the people skills that can make or break your business success. Career and business success is all about relationships and empathy is key. It replaces the distance of diversity with bonds of connection.

Image is: Diverse business people.

Empathy builds bonds of success. Image by: Maryland_GovPics

Image by: Maryland_GovPics

Empathy: 3 Key Thoughts to Boost Your Business Success

You can develop your empathy and increase your success. Empathy gets you out of your own head and into others. It allows you to step outside of your own perspective and see where others are coming from. It builds trust. It builds bonds with customers. It boosts your negotiation skills.

Key Thought #1:

Empathy: Image is quote Empathy is the connection before the solution.

Empathy is the connection before the solution. ~Kate Nasser

Key Thought #2:

Image is quote: Empathize before you analyze.

Empathize before you analyze. ~Kate Nasser

Key Thought #3:

Image is quote: Empathy and integrity build and rebuild trust.

Empathy and integrity build and rebuild trust. ~Kate Nasser


Empathy is the universal connector to the new and unexplored. It unites people to create success together — leaders and teams, business owners and leaders, sales reps and customers. It is one of the most powerful business people skills.

Get Started Now!

9 Hidden Places to Find & Develop Your Empathy


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

Related Posts:
Empathy and Integrity: 5 Keys to Rebuild Customer Trust

©2015 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.

 

 

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Customer Experience: How to Improve It Quickly

Customer Experience Quick Improvements: Image is light shaped curve.

Customer Experience Quick Improvements. Image by Sam Delong.

Image by Sam DeLong via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Customer Experience: 6 Ways to Improve It Quickly

  1. Improve your welcome. That first impression sets the tone for the customer experience. As a brand, pick one word that defines how you want to come across to customers. Then have every employee the customer with a welcome that matches that image. The image is memorable so make it great.
  2. Listen for what the customers are not saying. You are already listening to what they are saying. To improve customer experience quickly, hear what they are not saying. It wows the customers and gives them the extra connection they love so much.

  3. Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

  4. Think ‘yes’ and ‘how to’ vs. ‘that’s not the way we do it here.’ Customers don’t come to you to follow your process. They come to experience what they want!
  5. Ask how are we doing instead of how did we do! Every moment of customer interaction is a moment to learn and improve. Take the customer’s pulse sooner. Their vital sign is your vital sign.
  6. SHOW customers you care. They cannot observe your intentions. The experience is in the doing. It comes alive with your actions — not in what you are trying to do.
  7. Be very open to feedback. Any time you feel frustrated or annoyed with customer complaints, ask yourself: Would you rather they complain or leave without telling you why? Complaints are a sign of continued interest — the lifeblood of any business.

As a customer, what customer experience improvements do you want to see?


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

Related Posts:
Customer Experience: 24 Tips to Make It Easy & Valuable
Irresistible Customer Experience: What Every Customer Wants
Irresistible Customer Experience: DOs & Don’ts Part II

©2015 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.

 
QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Experience Dull Empathy or Strengthen It?

Former customer service agents and tech support reps often have empathy for current customer service and technical support teams. They remember the pressure and are considerate. It begs the question: Why do many customer service and tech support agents lack empathy for customers? Do they forget what it feels like to be a customer?

Likewise, does a leader’s current experience dull empathy toward their teams? Have they forgotten what it’s like not to be in charge?

Should knowledge and experience make it easier to give empathy?

Or Does Knowledge & Experience Dull Empathy?

 

Experience Dull Empathy: Image is T-shirt saying You're Stupid.

Experience Dull Empathy?

Image via Amazon.com

Does Knowledge & Experience Dull Empathy?

Knowledge and experience can blind customer service agents and tech support reps to customers’ …

  • Emotions when needing help
  • Fear of not knowing
  • Frustration of being delayed in lengthy procedures
  • Impatience with being routed and transferred
  • Anger at being trapped in the maze of customer support
  • Vulnerability of having to trust others with their success

Likewise, power, knowledge, and experience can blind leaders to employees’

  • Challenges of understanding leader’s vision
  • Struggles of accomplishing goals without authority
  • Personality type differences
  • Quest to acquire knowledge and experience to perform well
  • Pressure of dealing with under-performing teammates
  • Implementing solutions with limited time and resources

Experience and knowledge deliver confidence and a sense of control — the very things that reduce fear, stress, and obstacles.   Unfortunately for some leaders and for some customer service agents, their knowledge and experience dull empathy. Add the pressures of leadership and the stress of customer service work to the picture, and it makes them even less empathetic toward those they lead and serve.

Consider: When you are under incredible pressure do you care less about other things that normally bug you?  You just want to get rid of the big pressure and you overlook everything else? But what if those other things are still very stressful to those you lead and serve? Can you find it in you to empathize with them? Or does your knowledge and ability to fix the trouble bring you to label them as emotional or stupid? In these moments, your knowledge and experience dull empathy.

The best customer service reps overcome the dulling effects of knowledge, experience and pressure by:

  1. Being aware of how they feel outside of work when they are customers
  2. Remembering to focus on one customer at a time. This focus delivers empathy
  3. Realizing that their job is to deliver a wonderful experience while solving the problem. It isn’t just to solve the problem
  4. Embracing the true role of service and support — to make life easier for the customer and get them productive again

Respected well-liked leaders deliver empathy by asking themselves: What does it feel like to be this employee right now? Although knowledge and experience dull empathy in other leaders, they live by the motto …

Don’t let your knowledge and experience dull empathy. Channel your experience into empathy that spurs success in those you lead and serve!

Your turn: What else blocks empathy & how can you overcome the block?

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

Related Posts:
Leaders, Are You Helpfully Objective or Actually Indifferent?
Empathy & Integrity: 5 Keys to Rebuild Customer Trust
18 Things Respected Well-Liked Leaders Consistently Do

©2012-2015 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.

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Irresistible Customer Experience Loyalty – Do’s & Don’ts Part II

In part one of delivering irresistible customer experience, we focused on what every customer wants. The next step, irresistible customer experience loyalty comes with consistency in being irresistible! And yes, it is doable. Apple, Ritz Carleton, Nordstroms, Zappos, all deliver it through relationships!

Irresistible Customer Experience Loyalty: Image is a Magnet drawing things inward.

Irresistible Customer Experience Loyalty: Do’s & Don’s Part II


Do’s and Don’ts of Irresistible Customer Experience Loyalty – Part II

An irresistible customer experience:

  • Is pleasurable.
  • Makes customers feel wanted.
  • Gives customers something they really want.
  • Surprises customers with something positive that they didn’t even know we wanted.
  • Gets better and better each time.
  • Reawakens pleasant feelings they had before.
  • Prevents or relieves difficulty or pain.
  • Elevates customers in some way and puts them in a positive light.

DOs/Don’ts:

  1. Greet customers w/ zeal and focus. Don’t use robotic greetings that seem disinterested.
  2. Show individual interest in them. Don’t queue them up like transactions.
  3. Design online and mobile interaction from the customer perspective. Get their feedback and make changes! Give your employees access to the same views to easily assist customers who call. Don’t let the silos in your company sour the customer experience.
  4. Embrace negative feedback w/ empathy and resolutions. Don’t defend with explanations and excuses. Tell the customer why the experience doesn’t make it better and repels them.
  5. Trust each customer until you have data that says otherwise. Don’t use procedures that treat every customer as a potential criminal. Irresistible customer experience loyalty comes from a trusting relationship!!
  6. Train your employees on how to build relationships & empower them to do it. Don’t reserve this training for just the sales folks. No matter what employee your customer interacts with, that interaction must draw the customer in again and again. It must virtually say “we want you not just your money.”
  7. Be flexible and adaptive. This doesn’t mean offering 100 different options. It means adjusting what you do offer to make the experience irresistible to customers. Don’t allow your metrics to become the culture. Metric-focused organizations slide into a rigid approach in service to the metrics. Serve the customer not the metric. Serve the customer and you’ll meet the metric.

Let’s do a workshop to train, empower, and inspire your employees very soon.


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

Related Posts:
25 Worst Customer Experiences to Avoid Making the Same Mistakes w/ Your Customers
Customer Experience Superstars: Their Celebratory Give & Take!
11 Surefire Beliefs for Superior Customer Experience

©2015 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.

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Expectations & Assumptions: JOIN us in #Peopleskills chat!

WHEN: Sunday April 12, 2015 at 10AM EDT. Hashtag: #peopleskills

Background on This Chat Topic: People Skills Expectations & Assumptions

Last Sunday in #Peopleskills chat, we discussed deepening connections. It raises additional questions about expectations and assumptions in human interaction.

Are expectations the hidden obstacle to great interactions? Or are they the force that brings people together in the first place? What about assumptions? Do they have a positive or negative effect? JOIN us this Sunday April 12th, 2015 at 10am EDT to discuss expectations & assumptions.

Expectations & Assumptions: Image is People skills logo

Expectations & Assumptions: Image by KimbManson for Kate Nasser. All rights reserved.

Image designed by: Kimb Manson Graphics Design for Kate Nasser. All rights reserved.

People Skills Expectations & Assumptions

Very few people are free of expectations & assumptions. Perhaps no one. Given that, how do expectations & assumptions impact human interactions in business, leadership, teamwork, customer service and in life’s deep relationships?

Some questions to get us thinking in advance. Actual questions will post live during the chat.

  • Where do expectations come from?
  • When we expect a great deal of ourselves, __________________.
  • What would human interactions be like if we had no expectations?
  • Expectations are the _________ to great human interaction.
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of leaders’ expectations of others?
  • What relationship is there between assumptions and expectations? Any?
  • How do our personal values affect assumptions and expectations of others?
  • What assumptions about others have helped humanity and which ones have hurt humanity?
  • Assumptions, gossip, and groupthink: Are they connected? If so, how can we stop the damage?
  • Does communicating expectations and assumptions make them OK? Or do they live on?
  • How can we capture the benefits of expectations and minimize the risks?
  • What are the key people skills for working through diverse expectations and assumptions?

So bring your personal perspective, your favorite beverage, and join me and the people skills global chat community this Sunday April 12, 2015 10am EDT on Twitter (hashtag: #peopleskills) to discuss people skills expectations & assumptions.

I also invite you to continue this chat by joining the Google+ People Skills Community and the LinkedIn Group People Skills Succeed to be a part of all the people skills discussions everyday 24×7. Get your people skills community member badge here.

Shout Out of Gratitude

My gratitude to all who participate and grow the people skills global chat community on Twitter (#peopleskills), Google+, and LinkedIn. We welcome your suggestions for topics, offers to co-host, and most especially your individual insights.

Special and continued thanks to generous chat moderators Chantal Bechervaise, Dave Moore, Hoda Maalouf, Tracy Shroyer, Jandis Price and Tom Rhodes for their time and insightful contributions.





Hope you will all join People Skills Global Chat on Twitter #peopleskills this Sunday April 12, 2015 10am EDT/7am PDT to explore people skills expectations & assumptions.

Everyone is welcome! We have only one rule in People Skills Global Chat: Respect for all even when we disagree.





TIP: If you have never been in a Twitter chat, you may find it helpful to log on to Twubs.com or Tweetchat.com, enter hashtag #peopleskills, and sign in to your Twitter account. The venue will insert the hashtag on each of your tweets and you will see all the tweets on one screen. Other tools available are Tchat.io, Hootsuite and TweetDeck.

I am the founder and host of the chat and will be happy to answer any questions you have in advance: Email me.

Chat with you this Sun. April 12, 2015 10am EDT in People Skills Global Chat on Twitter (#peopleskills) TOPIC: People Skills Expectations & Assumptions.

Until then, as always, I wish you bonds of happiness and success!

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

©2015 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.

 

 

PS-EnergyBar-LogoJoin me through these social channels

Engage in people skills learning! Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience. I invite your questions, share my experience, and welcome your wisdom.

Difficult Customer Moments: Free Your Mind!

With more than twenty years of teaching how to handle difficult customer moments, I can attest to one eternal truth:

Both the obstacle and the pathway to handing difficult moments with customers are in the mind — our minds, not theirs.

Difficult Customer Moments: Image is sign that says free your mind now!

Free Your Mind to Deliver Superior Service in Difficult Customer Moments Image by: EnvironmentBlog

Image by: Environmentblog via Creative Commons License

In Difficult Customer Moments: Free Our Minds!

First and most importantly, let’s free our minds of the disdainful phrase — difficult customer — and replace it with the empowering phrase, difficult moment. This changes our outlook from one of resentment and disregard to empowered action. We don’t resent customers and who they are. We work to remedy the difficulty.

Secondly replace our desperate lament “Why Me”, with the mind freeing phrase “What If”.


What If …

  1. The customer has goals we don’t understand yet?
  2. The customer’s personality is different from ours?
  3. There’s an urgency we are not aware of?
  4. The customer has insight beyond ours?
  5. There are cultural differences causing stress?
  6. The customer simply feels confused and worried?
  7. The customer is pressed for time?
  8. Trust is still lacking?

And What If …

  1. We listen carefully to hear what the customer is saying and not saying?
  2. We adapt to the customer’s personality type to build the bond?
  3. We explore to detect the urgent pressure?
  4. We hear the need instead of an attack to learn the bigger picture?
  5. We let the customer set the cultural bent?
  6. We clear confusion to relieve the worry?
  7. We empathize and then get to resolving the issue?
  8. We do everything we can to rebuild trust?

The phrase “What if” lights up the creative parts of our brain freeing us from the emotional trap of defensiveness. When we free our minds of labels and blame, we see and hear invaluable information, alternate views, and previously undetected possibilities.

Open-mindedness transforms the difficult customer moment from heavy burden to superior customer service. Our adaptability and new thinking show the customer our professional care and that echoes throughout the customer’s community.

Action Summary
In difficult customer moments, silently ask yourself these what ifs. This mind freeing approach will:

  • Keep you calm and caring.
  • Stop you from telling the customer “calm down.” (Don’t ever say this!)
  • Tool you with great questions to ask the customer.
  • Improve your listening.
  • Fuel you with ideas on how to resolve the problem.
  • Lift your spirit and sustain your morale.
  • Wow the customer with care and great service recovery.

When have you received great care as a customer when you were upset?


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

Related Posts:
5 Powerful Beliefs & Actions to Win Over Rude or Angry Customers
24 Customer Service Tips to Make it Easy for Customers

©2012-2015 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.

 

 

QuickSpot-grahpicV2

Engage in people skills learning!

Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience.

I invite your questions, welcome your wisdom, and look forward to working with you.
~Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Great Customer Service Staff: Recruit These 15 Natural Traits

For years I have been able to spot job applicants who are naturally great at customer service. They excel at it. They have an ease, commitment, and skill that makes them great. They have a natural calling to serve others and they answer that call very well.

Recruit Naturally Great Customer Service Staff: Image is bright sun over ocean

Recruit Naturally Great Customer Service Staff. Image by Sea Turtle via Flickr.

Grateful for image by Sea Turtle via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Recruit Naturally Great Customer Service Staff

As more and more managers asked me how I picked naturally great customer service staff, I created this list of traits and behaviors. It was an interesting exercise to turn my people skills intuition into concrete traits you can unearth in interviews.

Here’s what the naturally great customer service staff do:

  1. Accept the absurdity of life without using sarcasm toward the customer.
  2. They easily adapt; their need for control is low.
  3. They listen with empathy.
  4. They brilliantly balance objectivity and caring.
  5. They initiate both caring and action. This is essential for dealing with upset customers.
  6. They know that they can’t change others — only their own perspectives and reactions. More importantly, they don’t want to change others.
  7. They love diversity. They are inspired and excited by it. They are non-judgmental.
  8. They exhibit a high sense of ownership and teamwork.
  9. They understand the big picture and show attention to detail; they follow-through.
  10. They see and hear far more than what the customer is saying and use it well.
  11. They continuously learn from interactions and quickly reapply this insight.
  12. They are self-confident not arrogant. They are comfortable with customers questioning their authority and influence appropriately.
  13. They have a thick skin and a warm heart. This makes them resilient and prevents them from burning out.
  14. They believe service and servitude are completely different. The first you choose; the second you don’t. They are proud to serve.
  15. They love to serve because of the giving — not to be liked or loved in return.

One caution: Be wary of job applicants who say they like customer service work because they like being appreciated. When the difficult customers are and the thank yous aren’t, these employees become frustrated and may do poorly. Customer service is about caring for others not about the customers caring for them.

Recruit and retain naturally great customer service staff by:

  • Understanding and believing that these people actually exist. Look in diverse pools of talent.
  • Using above list to hire friendly. Then train technically.
  • Giving them leeway in interacting with customers. Rigid scripts work against their natural talents.
  • Treating them with respect and trust. It sustains their natural talent.

You can easily trust and empower them to wow the customers. Since they are highly responsible and talented, the customer experiences the ultimate in care and action — in the moment, every time.

The consistently high quality service these great customer service staff deliver is your winning business advantage!

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

Related Posts:
Customer Service Inspiration: The Secret Keys to Great Attitude
5 Powerful Beliefs to Win Over Rude Angry Customers
11 Wining Beliefs for Superior Customer Service Experience
Customer Service People Skills: 10 Non-Defensive Responses

©2015 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.

 

 

PS-EnergyBar-LogoJoin me through these social channels

Engage in people skills learning! Let’s turn interaction obstacles into business success in leadership, teamwork, and customer service experience. I invite your questions, share my experience, and welcome your wisdom.

Older Posts »