We all know that the success of a business depends on its clients. If a business doesn’t have happy clients, it will most likely suffer. But, providing quality client service is sometimes not as easy as one would think – one has to balance the needs and expectations of the customer along with the reality of what your business can and cannot deliver. And that’s not always an easy or simple thing to do.
So, based on my many years of working as a Customer Service Representative at AccessEasyFunds, I’d like to speak briefly on some of the essentials for providing quality service to your clients.
1. Be available to your clients
As Woody Allen once famously quipped, 80 percent of success is simply showing up. And the same thing can be said for good client service. Simply put, you can’t provide good service to your clients if you’re not there for them. Therefore, make it your top priority to be available to your clients as much as possible. If you have a department in your business specifically devoted to customer service, then make sure that its hours of operation are convenient to the majority of your clients. If you communicate directly with your clients, then make sure they have your cell phone number, so they can easily and more readily reach you.
2. Stay informed on all aspects of your business and in the field you work in
Here’s the thing – much of business these days is information-centered. What that means is that an increasing amount of companies are in the business of providing knowledge to their clients, as opposed to, for example, physical products. So, what does that entail when it comes to providing quality client service? It means that in order to provide good service, you must always be informed of the latest and most accurate developments in your business’s industry. Furthermore, you must be able to communicate these developments to your clients in a clear and understandable way.
Therefore, make it a point to stay informed. Read the latest trade journals. Go to industry conferences. Try to meet with experts in your field on a regular basis. And if you have a department that interacts directly with your clients, make sure they are always informed and sufficiently trained.
3. Always understand and keep in mind that every client is different
There’s a tendency for some businesses to think that every client of theirs will have the same set of needs and desires. Of course, if that were the case, it would make providing good client service so much easier! Unfortunately, that’s just not reality. The truth is that, regardless of your type of business, every client of yours will be different and will have a different set of needs and expectations. As a business, you have to accept this and anticipate that there’ll be requests from clients that you may not be able to answer immediately. In these situations, instead of providing a pre-prepared, generic answer (which undoubtedly the client will see through and which probably will not help their needs), take time to investigate their inquiry and then follow up with them with a more informed answer. The client will be far more appreciative and it will reflect far better on your business.
4. Last but not least, make sure you communicate to your clients how much you value them
We all know the old adage that the customer is always right. However, I find this saying to be a little outdated and a little too simplistic in this complex world we now live in. The thing is that sometimes your clients will not be right. They might be misinformed or they might have unreasonable expectations which are impossible to deliver on. Therefore, I suggest a revision of this adage to the following: the customer should always know that both they and their opinion are highly valued by your business. I think this revision serves to admonish that providing world class client service can be a complex thing and that it takes talent and dedication to master.