Why you should stop trying to be better at Customer Service

You need to stop trying to be better than everyone else at “Customer Service.”

Is THAT a bold statement?  Yes!

Do I mean it?  Well…partially.

My point is that too many business owners talk about providing great “customer service,”  but fall into one or both of the following traps:

  1. They look at their “customer service” as some generic thing that happens because the owner “cares deeply” about their customers. However, EVERYONE says they offer the best customer service; and how they care more about their customers than anyone else.  But THAT, my blog-reading friends, is a mathematically impossibility.
  2. They set up a customer service differentiator around something that is EXPECTED.  For example,
    1. A mechanic who guarantees that your car is fixed right the first time.
    2. A restauranteur who promises that your fried chicken is hot & fresh.

Both of these are basic expectations, and NOT differentiators.

So what SHOULD you do?

Create a differentiator around your customer service that is:

  1. Specific
  2. More than expected

What are some examples of specific and more than expected customer service?

    1. The auto mechanic who doubles the manufacturer’s warranty.
    2. The restauranteur who guarantees that you will enjoy your meal (even if you are ordering something new).

So, it is not that you should not try to have great Customer Service; rather, you just need to make sure that you can clearly define how your customer service is better with something more than your prospects would expect.

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  • zenrabbit  On September 23, 2011 at 9:02 am

    Great post, Roger! Drives me crazy when people tell me they provide “excellent customer service” and then when I ask them what that means exactly, they say something like “we do what we say we’re going to do and do it on time.” Hello, like you said, that is no more than a basic expectation! Well said.

  • Coach Roger  On September 23, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Thanks Lori!

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