If you have ever brought a new born baby back home you’ll know that it doesn’t come with any training or even an instruction leaflet. The nurses pretty much hand the baby to you with the unsaid instructions of ‘keep it alive’. And that’s what you do. Guiding all your actions and decisions is the one directive ‘keep it alive’ even when you get to the toddling stage when the toddlers directive is to kill itself you still know that whatever it takes you have to keep it alive. So you bubble wrap all the sharp edges and barricade the stairs. We may all have different methods, but all parents are united in the one goal – help this child survive and thrive. So what has this got to do with customer service? Well I’ll tell you! Continue reading
We all buy stuff all the time. Some things are habitual buys and others are more impulsive and spontaneous but they are linked by the same driver DESIRE!
A product doesn’t have to be sexy for us to desire it, we just have to directly link it to a need, goal or problem we have and it becomes desirable. Take rubbish bins for example, not sexy but desirable! The more needs something meets and problems it solves the more desirable it becomes.
People don’t always know what they want to buy but they always know the problems and needs they have. I see many examples of sales and marketing material that is too self-promoting, banging on about the company’s products and processes and not the buyer’s needs and goals. Continue reading
21st October 2015 is the date Marty McFly arrived in the future in the iconic film Back to the Future. Whilst we might not be whizzing around on hoverboards (well not in my town anyway!) imagine being Marty and glimpsing at future trends such as listening to our music on a tiny device that fits into a pocket or a company that customers can’t get enough of such as Amazon.
Great forward thinkers like Apple and Amazon (and many more) didn’t have a Delorean to take them into the future, but they did have the ability to anticipate what we would want even before we knew we wanted it! This great ability is called customer foresight and we all need to develop it in our organisations if we want to excel at selling and serving and remain one step ahead of the competition.
Most organisations have some insight activity focused on the needs, goals and problems customers currently have and how they can help them, but customer foresight is a different thing entirely. This is about solving problems before the buyer realises it’s a problem. Continue reading
Over the years I have run various customer services courses and as there was a demand for it, I supplied it. I rarely ran them as open courses because I wanted to ‘vet’ the companies to make sure they were ready for the training. The truth is that customer service ‘training’ is the last step for your organisation to take if you truly want to be customer centred (and then in the end you may not actually need it!).
Many call this process I’m talking about ‘Creating a Customer Culture’ and that in essence is what it is. I prefer to call it making customer care part of your DNA – where it drives your people instinctively, rather than you having to inspire it in them with initiative after initiative!
I’m including your sales and marketing functions in this too as from the customer’s prospective it is all service to them. And I’m also including internal customers because in business everyone who isn’t you is a customer. So that’s pretty much your whole organisation! Continue reading
No, I haven’t gone mad; I just want to show you that it’s a mindset and culture thing!
Most training courses consist of the sharing of tools and techniques to use and implement in your organisation. These tools rely on the desire, commitment and will of the learner to use them.
The trouble is it’s not that simple. If it was just down to learning the tools then we would have no problem selling, serving, losing weight, managing time, finding love or any of the other goals we want to achieve in life.
It takes more than that. It takes a real desire to want to do something differently or better and the right culture to do it in.
There is little point in JUST giving your people tools for how to give a great sales and service experience. They know what ‘great’ does and doesn’t look like, they see it every day as customers themselves. It has to go deeper than that. They need to understand WHY they WANT to do it. Continue reading