10 ways to fall in love – with your customer
1. Make customer service a priority for the whole company, not just a department. A customer service attitude needs to come from the top.
2. Make WOW a verb that is part of your company's everyday vocabulary.
3. Empower and trust your customer service reps. Trust that they want to provide great service... because they actually do. Escalations to a supervisor should be rare.
4. Realize that it's okay to fire customers who are insatiable or abuse your employees.
5. Don't measure call times, don't force employees to up sell, and don't use scripts.
6. Don't hide your 1-800 number. It's a message not just to your customers, but to your employees as well.
7. View each call as an investment in building a customer service brand, not as an expense you're seeking to minimize.
8. Have the entire company celebrate great service. Tell stories of WOW experiences to everyone in the company.
9. Find and hire people who are already passionate about customer service.
10. Give great service to everyone: customers, employees, and vendors.
Every new person at Zappos (no matter their role in the business) has at least two weeks on the phone to customers as part of the induction program. We do similar at RedBalloon, and at our busy times – just like Christmas – everyone has the skills to jump on the phones and emails to help out with the enquiries we receive.
There is no better way to know a business than have time with customers. Thank-you Zappos for the reminder to be vigilant, zealous and addicted to the customer experience.
One of Australia's outstanding entrepreneurs, Naomi regularly entertains as a passionate speaker, a blogger and a published author, most recently publishing Five Thanks a Day. She has received many accolades and awards for the business she founded, RedBalloon.com.au including the 2011 Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur of the Year – Industry.