Would You Knowingly Give Your Competitors 15% to 30% of Your Business?
When it comes to customer service, there are several challenges business’s face today. First, is gaining an understanding of what service expectations their customers have. Second, is recognizing those expectations once discovered, and third, how to begin to train their sales staff to consistently meet those expectations. By discovering “What” your customer’s expectations are, and training your staff to meet those expectations, you can begin to grow your business. What we have found is that often, when a store provides poor service, it is not typically the fault of the sales staff, but the managers. If your employees are left to their own and do not receive continuous coaching, training and support from your management, they will more than likely service your customers based on their own perceptions rather than catering to your customer’s needs.
The key to providing “Outstanding Customer Service” is discovering who your typical customers are, how they would like to be served, and what you can do to “Exceed” their expectations. One of the options is to employ the service of a “Mystery Shopper Company” to help you discover how your typical customers perceive the service they are receiving as well as look for deficiencies that may be present within your stores. There are four primary elements to having a successful shopper program. The first is setting the proper expectations for service, second is creating accountability for the results, third is putting a training program in place to correct issues that are discovered as well as incentives for positive behavior, and fourth which is crucial, is consistency. One of the traps that company’s fall into when starting a program is that when the mystery shop reports come in and they review the information, they tend to “React” rather than to “Act” on the information.
The typical reaction is to immediately look for a way of fixing the problem rather than discovering why the problem exists in the first place. When this approach is taken, the problem generally continues to surface and changes are minimal if at all. The solution lies in discovering “Why” the problem exists, and then you can begin to implement the necessary changes to correct the problem.
A great deal of the time, managers simply fall into the routine of daily tasks and overlook the foundation of service that was once in place. Therefore, it is just as important to continuously coach and train your managers on a regular basis as it is your sales staff.