The Hidden Weapon to Keep Your Clients
WRITTEN BY Joe Porpiglia, Senior Predictive Index Consultant
Recently I saw a statistic that showed that more than 80% of consumers stop using a company’s product if they are dissatisfied with its customer service and 69% will tell their friends about the problems. So, losing many of our customers isn’t about price or even something that our competitor has that we don’t, it often comes down to how a customer “feels” about how they have been treated, either at the front end of a sale or how they were treated when a problem arose. Your hidden weapon is superior customer service. But that is such an overused phrase in the business world. Every company usually has a customer service department, but how many of us consider that department as important as the sales department. Yet even though we know how expensive it is to get a new customer, do we focus enough on keeping them once we have them? And I am not talking about having the largest customer service department but rather having the “right” employees in that department. What do we look for when we are hiring a customer service representative, someone who smiles, someone who seems nice during an interview, someone who is just starting out in the business world? Or do we treat this hire as a secondary function in our business and not as an integral part.
Have you ever heard the quote, “you can’t teach nice”? Hiring someone who will handle customers not as an interruption to real work but as an opportunity to increase loyalty and future business is not as easy as it may seem. You need to find out how the person will fit into your organization and your customer service department. How will this person handle the pressure of talking to an irate customer calling about a complaint? How will they attempt to resolve the problem? More importantly how do you want them to solve customer issues; by the book or on a case by case basis. Trying to hire the right person based on an interview or a resume is like trying to pick the winning lottery number. Only by using a scientifically validated behavioral assessment tool can you successfully predict how your candidate will act under pressure or as the day wears on. We are often asked if there is a set behavioral pattern for a customer service person, the answer would be IT DEPENDS! It depends on what you are selling, the complexity of the product or service, the costs of the product or service. You need to find a tool that, like the Job Profile with The Predictive Index, can help you find what behaviors are necessary for your company’s specific customer service goals and objectives. Only then can you increase the probability of finding the right person for your company.
It is through great customer service that your company can differentiate itself from competitors and keep your customers and increase your bottom line profits.