The goal of each business is to provide exceptional customer service; but do we really understand what exceptional service really is?
There are two mindsets when it comes to how a certain business interacts with customers and the industry – one is a selling mindset and the other one is a service mindset. These two mindsets determine the personality of the business and how it is perceived not only by clients, but also by the entire industry.
The selling attitude is deeply rooted in the business’ goal of maintaining revenue and managing customer turnover. The sales mindset pretty much stems from every business’ direction of being profitable and sustainable. Moreover, adapting this mindset entails that every customer interaction should always start with a question of “What can I sell you today?” There’s nothing really wrong with adapting a selling mindset; but it all goes awry when the attitude itself becomes the only focal point of an organization. Getting sales as the only focus will lead the business on a downward spiral of short term solutions and short-lived results.
A service attitude, on the other hand, begins with the primal instinct of assisting others. With this type of mindset, there is an unquestionable interest in problem solving so that others can also achieve their goals and be successful. More importantly, having a customer service mindset dictates that the level of engagement demonstrates genuine commitment.
Below are some tips on how to demonstrate exceptional service to your customers.
- Approach each new customer with questions like “How can I help” and “What challenges are you currently facing?” Showing unpretentious interest towards your customers, their businesses, and their challenges is a true demonstration of exceptional service.
- Always remember to partner with your customers. Use partnering words like ‘we’ or ‘us’ in any communication. In whatever challenge the customers are facing, make them feel that you’re also in there, facing it with them.
- Treat your customers’ businesses like it’s your own. A customer’s challenges are your challenges; and their success, your success. Always be ready to roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty.
- Put value add into your products of services. Assure your customers that you can help them make a difference. If there are issues that you’re unsure of your ability to help, tell them honestly; but don’t forget to help them look for other ways and means to overcome those obstacles.
- Champion your client’s goals. If you truly believe in your customer’s business, then you are a right match for each other. Having the same direction and championing each other’s cause provide a lot of motivating power and will generate results. If both your goals are contradicting, then there shouldn’t have been a partnership in the first place.
- Sensible time management is also paramount. Always make sure to set clear project scopes, job specifications, and time-keeping. Honor the value that your business brings to the relationship by making sure that you get what is appropriate for your efforts. Absolutely say ‘no’ to customers who won’t pay the set price for your services as they do not see what value you can provide their business.
Adapting a genuine customer service attitude allows you to exceed all expectations; without having to follow any guidelines or rules in doing so. It just shows how exceptional service is natural to your way of doing business. Taking time to listen, showing that you care, and demonstrating a willingness-to-help attitude will almost always win you faithful customers.
A selling mentality may well be good in achieving short term goals; but having a customer service mindset most likely results to solid, long-term, and loyal partnerships; with tons of referrals to boot. Still, the decision is up to the business owner; you. If you want a big stream of customers of who you never hear from again, then focus on a selling mentality. If you want customers who hang around for a long time, give you repeat work, and refers you to their own customers or colleagues, then we suggest putting focus on exceptional service.