Great service – more than a smile

Dan taught his staff to smile at customers. But still his customers were complaining about bad service.

Dan asked Think Learn Succeed to help out. We watched his team in action. Their real problem was a lack of systems. Without proper standards and procedures, service was inconsistent. Service personnel were struggling with inefficient systems and excessive workloads. No-one had time to stand back and address the source of customer problems.

Here are the steps we used to solve Dan’s problem. You can use the same strategies to establish a robust service strategy in your business.

1. Remind the team that staff are customers, too

Dan’s team were smiling at paying customers, but snarling at each other. They ignored the idea of internal customer service. This made everyone’s job harder. So Dan organised a workshop on internal service. By improving the way they treated each other, the team boosted their efficiency and reduced errors. External customers benefited because the business worked smoothly.

2. Set and monitor service standards

Service standards are clear, concise and measurable descriptors of how service will be provided. Dan’s team delivered inconsistent service, because they had not agreed on what ‘good service’ was. During their internal service workshop, Dan asked team members to write down standards for each of their key services. Now everyone knew what was expected of them.

3. Delegate problem solving

Dan couldn’t be there every time a service problem occurred. So it made sense to teach his team how to analyse, solve and respond to problems. We taught the team to use problem solving tools. These included problem maps, option generators, flowcharts and a cause and effect diagrams. Dan also delegated problem solving authority to team leaders. This meant faster, more customised problem solving. All of which created happier customers.

4. Continuously improve service

Dan’s staff often had great ideas for solving service problems. But those ideas were getting lost in the bustle of everyday work. We gave the team an ‘ideas book.’ Ideas were written in this book as soon as they came up. The team reviewed the ideas once a week and created plans for implementing them. Better service was an immediate result.

Book a customer service course for your team. Contact us now.