If Your Internal Service Sucks, Your External Service is Doomed

If Your Internal Service Sucks, Your External Service is Doomed

As an organization if you want to create the best experiences for your customers (and employees) the devil is in the details! If you want to create experiences that make your customers stay longer, buy more, and positively refer others, you must focus on the little things that will differentiate your experience from your competitors and this all starts with aligning your internal service cooperation. 

Create Personalized Interactions and Focus on the Little Things

“In creating service experiences, each one of us has the ability to make the little things the important things.” – Peter Psichogios

This means you must pay attention to every detail. It is important to manage the details, both for your employees and your customers, so that you can create personalized, authentic and friendly interactions each and every time. In the personalization economy, the little things are the big things. And it’s important to personalize the experience for both your employees and customers.  What I mean by that is, get to know your employees and customers more intimately, and treat them uniquely how they want to be treated.  This might be recognizing and rewarding an employee in a personalized way that motivates and engages them.  With a customer, this might mean asking them “how would you like us to serve you,” or listening to their queries and personally addressing their feedback.

A major blunder we see executive teams and companies make is that they do well on what they deem the important or hard things, and lose focus, do not pay attention, and have inconsistent interactions on what they perceive as trivia, detail or “the little things.”

Exceptional Customer Service Starts with Internal Service Cooperation

One of the hallmarks of every legendary customer service organization is that they first have awesome internal service cooperation. When you have exceptional internal service, your employees feel enabled and competent to serve their customers and focus on the little details.

Here are 7 Ways to Create Internal Service Cooperation:

  1. Stay Positive – have the same upbeat attitude with your internal partners as you could with your external customers
  2. Honor Commitments – when you make a commitment with a coworker, keep it!
  3. Communicate Often – The best customer service is create from high-touch, high-tech communication environments.  This is one area where it is extremely important to focus on the small details and listen.
  4. Negotiate Expectations – share how another internal service provider can better assist you in serving an external customer
  5. Step Out of Your Silo – Network with co-workers from other areas of the organization to understand the internal service workflow.  This is another area where the small details of understanding how your work effects others (and vice versa) will be extremely influential.
  6. Be Polite – treat co-workers with the same courtesy as you would customers, and help them be responsive and efficient to your external customers.
  7. Be Helpful – look for ways to directly or indirectly support a customer or co-worker.
Discussion

We’d love to hear your feedback on how you implement exceptional internal service in your organization.

Have you seen changes your internal service make a difference for your external customers?

How do you focus on the little things (while also making sure the big things are taken care of)?

What actions do you have in place to make your internal service exceptional so that your external customer service can shine?

Reply in the comments below and share your best practices so we can learn from one another!

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Get Your People Geeked about Learning

Get Your People Geeked about Learning

If you’re in the learning and development department, I bet a big part of your role is figuring out how to best disseminate information to your employees so that they can effectively use that information in real life scenarios and better serve your internal and external customers.

A huge part of creating this sort of effective learning that will make your employees feel connected to your organization’s goals and objectives, is finding the sweet spot of intersection between learning and engagement. Learning is one of the key drivers of employee engagement so it is important to capitalize on this with your employees and discuss where they are, where they want to be in the future and how learning bridges that gap.

Here are some ways you can get your employees engaged and geeked about learning:

1. Incent them to learn by recognizing them with rewards. It’s important to show your employees you are committed to learning by rolling their development into your engagement and recognition program. You can give employees an allotment of points for every lesson they complete or a larger sum upon completion. Or if monetary recognition isn’t your thing, you can use gamification and badging to set up leaderboards and start some friendly competition. Let’s face it, this gold star method has been working to encourage positive behavior since back in preschool.

2. Don’t give them too much information too fast. One of the top reasons why employees feel bored or overwhelmed with learning is that they get too much information, too fast. If you give them information in short, digestible doses, repeated and reinforced over time, they will be more likely to effectively process the information and feel encouraged to continue to pursue learning in the future.

3. Incent them to learn by providing opportunities for growth. Most people would rather be awesome than ordinary. Your employees want skills and competencies that will make them more marketable now while they are with you, and for where they want to go in the future. Not many employees want to stay stagnant in their careers. If you provide your employees with learning opportunities it shows that you care about their future at your organization. It is also important to create a culture where they can progress and grow into new and more senior roles. Have your employees shadow roles above them, and find opportunities for them to practice their leadership skills.

4. Have an action plan and accountability so they feel connected to the success. It is important that your employees are accountable for what they have learned and are clear on their learning objectives. Give them an opportunity to practice, drill and rehearse their learning in a safe environment, so that they know exactly how they can apply it with a customer. Then, senior leaders should have one on one conversations with employees about how they will apply the learning in real life scenarios.

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