In a world that has grown to be increasingly socially networked, a customer’s perception of a business controls the revenue and profitability of a company to a very large extent. From front line staff to back-office workers, customer service excellence is not merely a desirable attribute, it is vitally necessary. Most times, the first impression that a potential customer forms, will determine his or her lasting impression about a firm’s products or services. With such high stakes, it is no surprise that corporations are signing up their employees for customer service courses in order to improve customer and vendor relationships.
While a particular customer service course may address important topics such as communication, being right the first time, handling conflict, complaint management, and customer expectation management, the right customer service training program goes beyond merely instructing your staff, to actually helping them apply these concepts through role-plays, simulations and group discussions.
In most situations, preconceived notions about customer service and the sense that customer service courses are not designed for back-office staff tend to hamper the learning experience. However, a comprehensive customer service training program where theory is reinforced by practical demonstration will enable your staff to hone soft skills such as assertiveness, body language management, written communication skills and telephone etiquette. A good customer service course is typically a day-long course with a healthy balance of theory and simulations, while allowing sufficient time for the lead trainer to assess and address individual training needs. This means that customer service training is best conducted for small to medium groups, enhancing the effectiveness of the program. A mix of front line and back-office staff is certainly a bonus, where the participants learn how their actions can influence a customer’s interaction with another department.
Customer service excellence is achieved collectively – therefore enabling your staff to understand and practice these coveted skills will reap a rich reward for your business.