Building a culture of business development and customer service is a never-ending task, and must be part of the DNA of the people on the team. Providing world-class customer service must be the underlying objective of every new hire, every new product, every new service, and of every business model change or upgrade. In short, customers are the reason we are in business.
I worked at a tourist resort, and I met a young woman on a rare day off whose father was a business owner in the small tourist town. The place was loaded with tourists, and it was hard to move about that day. I lamented the fact that the place was so crowded, and that the next day I’d be back at the grind behind a stove cooking for the next boat load of people through. “I love the tourists,” she said. “They are like dollar bills walking down the street.” To which I replied, “Wait a minute! You can’t love money.” She quickly said, “I don’t, I love the tourists.”
It was an epiphany moment for me. She genuinely loved the tourists, not only for their buying power that resulted in revenue for her father’s store, but as people, fellow human beings walking their path alongside hers, and interacting with them to the betterment of all. It was an important lesson for me, one that has lasted many decades.
It’s a lesson I keep in mind every time I meet with our team leaders and staff. I ask them constantly, “What are you hearing from our clients? For what are they asking? Are they pleased with some aspect of our business? What frustrates them?” Listening to the voice of the customer is vital in every service business, and especially on the help desk. Here at Advantage, we have a technical support team that is available to our customers every hour, of every day, every day of the year. This team is the one I go to for insights into how we are doing. Are our customers satisfied with the products and services we offer? They know, they hear it every day.
So being a great listener is vital, but then so is understanding. If you simply listen to the voice of the customer, but don’t understand and act on what you hear, you’ve done nothing. In fact, you’ve done a disservice to your customers and to your enterprise and all its team members. Fortunately, we’ve been able to look for reps and support people who have been steeped in the automotive or related businesses for many years. They understand that not having the product our customers need, when they need it, or not getting an answer they need promptly can cost them a sale, increase their overhead costs, or just frustrate them. If you leave customers agitated, they won’t be customers for long. Knowing how to efficiently alleviate that will enhance the customer relationship tremendously.
You must also keep customers informed. If there are issues, new services, upgrades to hardware or software, we diligently prepare information for our customers and try to stay ahead of and anticipate their questions and concerns. In my view, nothing is worse than when I reach out to a service provider I use as consumer with a question or concern, and they say they will call back, but never do. It happens all the time in all, and nothing will lead me to leave a negative review as being ignored when I’ve paid good money for a product or service I can’t get answers about.
Having a phone answered by a human being or super smart AI-based telephony are both good choices. I include the latter, because I’m constantly amazed by Amazon’s call in service. The AI recognizes your phone number, asks if you would like a call back by the next available rep, and if you say “Yes,” you hang up. Usually, in the next few minutes, you receive a call from a human being who has your account pulled up and is ready to assist you. Not all businesses have such a fantastic call-in service, but it is something all businesses should aspire to. They should react with speed and agility, and have quick, reliable access to a client’s account information.
We have a load of information in our Knowledge Center on our website, that assists customers with multi-media information about our products and services, but when you call the number for an answer to a specific question, you can get the support you need — quickly. Visit our Knowledge Center HERE, and our Technical Support page HERE.