How do you deal with the pains of customer service?
I work in the hospitality industry, and I spend a lot of money on what I call "guest investments" where I give some sort of discount, free merchandise, etc. in order to win back customers when something goes wrong. I can't tell if it's working or if I'm throwing money away. How does your business deal with the challenges of customer service and keeping people happy?
Customer service shouldn't be considered a pain. If anything its' a privilege for you to be able to help those people. If you find that you are consistently clean up problems, then you need to look at how your customer processes and determine what is going wrong. Customer service should be proactive...ie. focused on keeping customers happy, and if it is reactive get to the root of the problem and solve it.
Customer service and pains are ironical. They are completely opposite. You choose to serve your customers well or go out of business. Don't forget, your customers remain loyal till they find a better alternative. Better in this case largely depends on excellent customer service.
Great question. I deal with it through training of staff and building relationships with customers. Likewise, I work with the customer (HRD executives we train and license) along with our clients to keep in touch throughout our projects.
Good customer service starts from within. Start by evaluating your own corporate vision, values, culture and communication. Enabling your employees to take responsibility for the entire customer experience and understanding why that is important to your business will reduce the "guest investments" substantially.
You might spend some time as a customer at businesses with outstanding marks in customer service and see what they do differently. Emulate what you like within your own business.
Most problems turn out to not be the customers. Their criticisms should be looked at as valuable business insight. Go track down the root cause, especially if you keep hearing the same things.
Good luck and thanks for reaching out for advice.
Recognizing the need for change is the first step to positive growth.
Customer service is hard to achieve.
However simple tactics will work perfectly:
1. Hire the right people on board if you have staff. People who are patient and pationate with a service mentality
2. DIRFT (Do it right first time). This will minimize the hastle
3. Ask question and listen to understanfd not to reply
Put yourself in their shoes. Trading places will avoid conflict. May be if you are in the same situation you'll be doing the same
4. Follow up, follow up, follow up to check if they are happy or still have issues
You very well may be "throwing money away" as you put it if you're not tracking to see if what you're doing is even working. How much are you spending on free merchandise? How much are you "losing" by giving away discounts?
It seems to me you may want to work on the problems that are creating this unhappy "campers" to begin with. You're in reactive mode and whenever you operate from this position you're gonna more often than not come out on the losing end...at least money-wise.
Here's my take on it all...1. Be Proactive - Prevent problems and make sure your guests are happy through their entire process. Encourage them to fill out surveys at the end of their stay.
This lets them know that you actually care. Most people are NOT looking for free merchandise or a hand-out - they want to feel like you care about them and that you'll remedy problems in a timely manner.
2. Give Out Gift Cards - Give out gift cards/certificates for use on their next visit. This way you can track their use and know if they're coming back.
Just my two cents...