Human nature causes us to provide better service to people we like. Use proven relationship-building techniques with service providers to create connections.
- Great customer service often comes from connecting on a human-to-human level. Think of people who've made a strong positive impression while serving you. They were probably friendly, attentive, and even fun. This often happens naturally, like that repair technician who instantly puts you at ease. Other times, we need to take action to increase the chance of making a connection with the person who is serving us. I'm gonna share three exercises you can try to create connections and build rapport while you are a customer.
The first exercise is called, make the first move. Whenever you encounter a customer service employee, make the first move by greeting them in a warm and friendly manner. Yes, the customer service employee is suppose to greet us first. But we've all experienced a situation where someone doesn't greet us right away. By making the first move, your enthusiasm will often be enough to jolt them into providing you with better service. The second exercise is called full attention.
Practice giving service providers your full attention by putting down your cell phone and eliminating other distractions. Your local coffee shop or fast food place is a great opportunity to try this one. The next time you're standing in line, notice how many people are absentmindedly using their phones. By the time they get to the front of the line, many are still distracted by their phone. If you've ever served customers like this, you know it's slightly off-putting. The employee has to work extra hard to be warm and friendly when a customer's not paying attention.
You will stand out in a positive way if you eliminate distractions and give the service employee your full attention. Which leads us to our third exercise, which is called, introduce yourself. If you go to a restaurant, call a 1-800 number, or talk to a sales person, they will often tell you their name. For some reason, customers often don't give their name in return. You can practice breaking the ice and getting to know people by name by introducing yourself to the people who serve you.
I've often found this makes a big difference by taking a conversation from a transaction to one where two friendly people are working to get something done. This can also help you get more comfortable learning and using different names when you are the one providing customer service. These exercises frequently help me break the ice with customer service employees. Employees often become friendlier and more eager to serve you when you've build rapport and created a personal connection.
- List three factors to consider when choosing the best service channel.
- Identify the fundamental skill that is the basis for the “Make Their Day” exercise.
- Name one thing a customer should not do after making a mistake.