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Customer Service: How to LISTEN to what your customers are really saying?

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Perceiving the quality of your customer service, communicating it effectively to all players, and learning how to improve it is a real challenge, especially now that buzz words such as customer journey and customer experience are stronger than ever.

But how can you really go from theory into practice? I´m going to tell you about the VAK (Visual, Auditory, and Kinesthetic) approach to customer service.

VAK is a learning style that consists on using the three main sensory receivers:

  • visual (things you see)
  • auditory (things you hear)
  • and kinesthetic (things you do)

Taking this approach will help solve the issues facing customer experience with your company.

Visual

Understand the effects of your company’s red tape on your customer service approach. You need to place yourself in the shoes of your customers to visualize the customer journey from their perspective and act accordingly. Nurture the experience you´re offering to your customers from their point of view.

Understand your own metrics and the consequences they have in your customers. Change the focus of what you´re measuring. Stop accounting for indicators, such as average talk time and start paying attention to FCR or NPS.

Auditory

Don´t follow the crowds. For example, everyone is saying that Social is the new body language. Depending on the type of business and age of the customers, social may not be that important because they simply are not there or the number of those who are do not justify the investment. Be where your valuable customers are. Don´t try to engage with your customers in all possible channels if the customers you serve are not there.

Listen for things that your customers are telling you, even if you don´t like it. Understand the white space to analyze the heart of customer operations decision making. Ask yourself: how do customers really want to be treated? Adopt an out-of-the-box thinking approach to really improve customer service. It can be as simple and easy as having an FAQ on your Web Site. Every time you come across words like “no”, “cannot”, “impossible” look again. Think outside of the box and fill the white spaces around you.

Listen to your superheroes: your agents. They are the people that really need to be engaged. Citing Richard Branson “Clients do not come first. Employees come first”. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your clients.” Engage with your employees and your customer service will be in good hands.

Kinesthetic

Attitudes drive behaviors which in turn deliver experiences and results. On the other hand, behaviors and experiences also influence attitudes. That is why you need to ask yourself:

How easy is it to do business with me?

How do you use all that you know about your most valuable customers and make it easier for them to do business with you? First you need to know your strengths and weaknesses.  And then, where you don´t have the strength go out and build it from scratch.  For example, use big data available all around to find out everything you can about your customers.

Have the courage to take small steps toward the final goal instead of going through dubious short cuts. You may achieve the objective if you do, but we all know that this crippled solution will have a very harmful outcome in the long run.

As it happens in all areas, but even more so in customer service, you get results by influencing people´s behavior, their desire to make business with you. So:

  • Be genuine to all your employees. If they are happy and motivated, your customers will for sure become brand advocates.
  • Come up with creative solutions and be sure to engage with all the interested parties.

In the end, it is not so complicated to make the customer engagement hall of fame after all!

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