We often hear the words “customer service” thrown around and that, “The customer is always right.” But is this true?

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It is one thing for organizations to instill strong communication skills within their team of customer service reps and admin staff who answer calls all day. It is quite another to teach them the skills needed for resolving issues and handling difficult customers who just won’t let up.

Here are the top five customer service basics to enforce within your brokerage or organization:

1. Let the customer vent:

When a customer is angry, disappointed or frustrated, the best thing to do is allow them time to vent. Make sure your staff does not interrupt them with a quick solution or words such as “calm down.” Often upset clients just need time to voice their emotions out loud.

2. Show empathy:

Empathy means putting yourself in your customer’s shoes and feeling what they feel. Use statements such as “I’m sorry”, “This must be very frustrating for you”, or “This must be so upsetting.”

3. Problem-solve effectively:

In order to problem-solve, your team members must actively listen to your customers. In order to not overlook any details, it’s a good idea for them to jot down key bullet points about each individual story they hear and rephrase it to the client.

4. Offer options and solutions:

Once the concerns are understood, remind your team members to offer your customers options. Customers feel more in control when they have choices. They want to feel like they are the ones driving the ship.

5. Follow up:

After all matters are handled, it’s wise for your team members to pick up the phone and check in to see if all is well. Something as simple as, “Hi Bill, just wanted to check in to see if all your issues have been handled properly” goes a long way.

Customer service is an integral part of any organization and it should not be overlooked. Your admin staff is the first point of contact to your company. If they do a good job, this is remembered and valued. If they do not, get ready to lose clients to your competitors at some point.

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