PART – 1
Who Requires CSS ?
Shopper, Buyer, Client, Consumer, Purchaser and Account. Whatever you may call, it means the same i.e ‘Customer’.
There are various industry-specific names, too. Hospitals call them as patients, Banks as account-holders, hotels as guests, airlines as passengers, TV-Channels as viewers, Print Media as readers, Radio stations as listeners, Educational institutes as students, Parks and Museums as visitors, Religions as worshipers, Politicians as voters, Confront-women call them regular customers, Govt as citizens and list goes on and on…
Whatever may be the word, if you are directly or indirectly involved in selling goods or services, for profits or not-for-profits it is important for you to develop CSS.
The benefits of possessing effective CSS :
- Your individual image grows among customers.
- You are more likely to find jobs faster and easier.
- You are more likely to be offered better compensation package.
- Your business is more likely to see increased member of satisfied customers thus causing more business.
Tips for effective CSS :
A smile does not cost you. There is no tax on ti and neither it is not a crime to smile. But a still many people working with customers do not give a smile at the customer because they do not know the importance of a smile.
A smile is a powerful non-verbal one. A smile immediately makes a connection with the customer. It shows that you are friendly and approachable. A smile makes the customer feel at ease. When a customer is giving you business and contributing to your growth, itf you do not show interest to give at least an artificial smile (In reality, it should be genuine) that is considered as unfriendly customer service.
D) EYE CONTACT:
Eye contact is another most important non-verbal one that widely neglected. Making an eye contact with the customers is very important. It shows that you are respecting and valuing the presence of the customer. It shows that you are approachable (meaning open fro communication).
“Look in to the customer’s eyes with a smile on your face”.
E) LISTEN :
Many people working with customers do not try to listen to the customers. They bombard the customers with their memorized words without even bothering to listen to the customers, opinions or questions. If you don’t listen to the customer attentively, you cannot fully understand the customer and you cannot give proper solution or answer.
If the customer does not get the proper solution or answer, them he / she is not satisfied. If the customer is not satisfied he / she is likely to avoid you or your organization.
It’s a chain-effect. Hence, use various techniques of listening skills and listen to the customer attentively and emphatically.
F) Use Gentle Humor :
Humor creates a friendly environment. it makes the customer feel comfortable. Hence, as and when appropriate, use humor to develop rapport or relationship with the customer.
However, certain care has to be taken when using humor. Otherwise it will backfire. Do not crack objectionable jokes. Use non-controversial and gentle humor. Make it situation-dependent.
G) Show Empathy :
You have to under stand the customer’s needs, wants, perspectives, Opinions and feelings so as to offer a better or satisfactory solution or service. You can do this only by putting yourself in customer’s shoes. Use empathy to understand. The customer’s concerns, requirements or problems. Handle complaints and concern in an empathetic ways. Having a blind spot towards customers can do damage to the business or your career in the long-term. Hence, be empathetic and try to use your own personal freedom and judgement to help the customer.
If you say, “It’s our organization’s policy…” It means you are not interested to help the customer any more. You can use your organizational policies as guidelines but not as the final judgement. Even constitutions of the nations are amended on a need basis to serve the people better.
Hence, be empathetic and try to help customers within your capacity using your creativity and problem-solving skills.
H) Be honest and open and build trust :
Honesty and sincerity are important in business. They help you in the long run. If you are not honest, your customers do not trust on you.
Hence, don’t lie. Don’t adopt double standard behavior. Build customers’ confidence and trust by being honest and open.
I) Every Customer is Important :
Don’t form any preconceived notions about your customers based on their physical appearance or any other external factors like skin color, makeup or clothing. You can’t judge people by what they wear or how they look.
J) Help the customers even if it is not your responsibility :
For technical reasons your organization may distribute customers to different staff but a customer is customer for the entire organization and not just to one particular department only. Wen a customer is in need and is unattended to or requires help, try to help the customer even if it is not your responsibility.
Customer is not concerned which employee of the organization helps him/her. All that the customer wants is assistance.
PART – II …. Continued.