Customer service professionals encounter many distractions when talking over the phone. These distractions can cause you to lose focus and miss out on opportunities to serve. Customer Service expert Jeff Toister will help you Identify common distractions in this video and teach you some techniques that you can use to avoid them.
- In this next chapter we're going to focus on how to exceed your customers expectations. Exceeding expectations requires us to do two things. First, we need to listen carefully to our customers, so we understand what they expect. Second, we need to identify opportunities to go beyond those expectations, so we can delight our customers. There's often a big obstacle that stands in our way, distractions. In this video we're going to identify some common distractions and find solutions for overcoming them.
Let's start by looking at some common distractions that you might see every day on the job. Take a look at this scene from a typical contact center. See how many distractions you can identify. - This is Kristen, how may I help you? Uh-huh. Mmhmm. Oh, can you repeat that? Got it.
Absolutely. So sorry about that. I'm making notes right now. - How many distractions did you observe? I spotted a few. A coworker interrupted her, her personal cell phone was going off, she was playing with a stress toy, and there was a lot of background noise.
All of those distractions can make it hard to concentrate on the customer. If you aren't paying careful attention you might miss an opportunity to exceed their expectations, or even worse, you might not resolve their problem. Now it would be pretty hard to eliminate all distractions, but there are some things we can do. One technique is to imagine you are having a face-to-face conversation with the customer. You'd be much less likely to get distracted if your customer was right in front of you. By imagining your customer is right there you'll be less tempted to get distracted when you're on the phone.
Some distractions can easily be eliminated or at least reduced. Try to find distractions that you have direct control over and stop them. For example, you can close down unnecessary programs on your computer, so you won't be distracted by messages popping up on your screen. You can store your personal cell phone out of sight, so it doesn't distract you while you're on a call. And you can get a noise cancelling headset that will reduce the amount of background noise that both you and your customer hear.
A third technique is to take a break. I don't just mean a break from work, I mean a break from all the noise, distractions, and rapid multitasking that's a big part of many phone-based customer service jobs. Our brains get tired trying to block out all of these distractions. Throughout the course of the day it becomes harder and harder to tune them out. Taking a break allows you to recharge and gain back some of your focus. A few contact centers have even created quite rooms to help their reps escape from all the noise.
Tuning out distractions isn't easy, it takes a lot of hard work and discipline, but if you can improve your ability to tune out distractions and focus you're much more likely to spot opportunities to delight your customers.
- Developing the perfect phone greeting
- Filling dead air
- Managing holds and transfers
- Expressing empathy
- De-escalating angry callers