Post Author: Michael Johnson, Senior Project Manager
I’ve often thought about what makes people want to work with you and the company you represent.
I’m sure it has a lot to do with the company you work for and its reputation, but I can’t help to think it’s more because of YOU.
All the education and hard work you’ve put in over the years has made you an expert in your field, but there’s a bit more to it than that.
Maybe it has something to do with all of the things you do on a daily basis to take care of those customers…the “behind the scenes” kinds of things…the customer service component that not everyone has.
Over the years I’ve read many articles explaining great customer service. Here are a five that consistently stick out to me:
I was taught early in my career that you have two ears and one mouth for a reason. Many of us, with all of our years of experience, sometimes think we know exactly what the client is going to ask for and have already determined a plan of action.
I’ve gone down that path before and it doesn’t always work. You have to fully listen to your client and everything they’re presenting to you before you can find the best solution for them. Every client is unique and being able to look at it from their point of view is an essential part of providing great customer service.
2. BE HONEST
Being honest is built into great customer service. Let your clients know what you’re dealing with internally…or with an outside supplier…and what you’re doing to complete your project on time and on budget.
This is often a fine line. You don’t want to overload your customer with all the minor details, but sharing some key items could be beneficial.
Just be honest and let them know what you can and can’t do. Honesty isn’t always easy, but it’s always appreciated.
3. EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED
Every project and every client can throw you curveballs. Anticipate the potential risks of a project and offer several options when presented with a problem or situation that needs your input.
Communication is so important in all aspects of dealing with your customers and the projects they’ve hired you to execute. Communication goes both ways.
It’s important you have good, quality input from your client (there’s that LISTENING thing again), discuss the project’s life in detail from start to finish, discuss any snags you run into along the way, and determine if it will change or delay the end result.
5. BE RELIABLE
ALWAYS do what you say you will do. If you say you will call, email, come by for a quick meeting, or deliver something by a certain date, DO IT. Sometimes that means putting in extra time and effort, but being reliable is one of the most important aspects of creating great customer service experiences.
These are just a few of my “go to’s” when providing great customer service for my clients and the projects they trust me with. The more I execute on these principles, the more trust I build, and the better the relationships grow.
What about you? What are your keys to providing great customer service? Share your comments below.