Customer service is the foundation of any successful business. Employees tasked with answering customer questions, or concerns, are known as the ‘frontline.’ In many cases, interaction with a company’s employees can be the deciding factor for a return visit.
Friendly employees are even more important in the age of the internet. After a bad experience, customers often take to social media to air their grievances, reaching a far wider audience. One bad review or poor feedback can cause customers in the double-digits to take their business elsewhere.
Business-centric blogs, such as bullpreneur, often feature anecdotal and factual information about what customers want.
What Makes an Employee Customer-Friendly
Dealing with angry or rude customers is a hard job. Anyone who does it needs to have the ability to remain calm under pressure. Not everyone is made out of jobs in customer service.
Customer service employees are called the ‘frontline.’ But they should really be called the last line. As in, the last line to make a good impression on the customer.
A customer-friendly employee should possess the following qualities.
- The friendly tone of voice.
- Smile or neutral expression.
- Listening before responding.
- Eagerness to resolve the issue to the customer’s satisfaction.
However, friendly customer service starts at the top. If the head honchos aren’t friendly to the employees, the employees are less likely to exhibit friendly behavior.
6 Steps to Ensure Your Employees Are Friendly to Customers
More than 50% of customers say that the key to a positive experience is the customer service employees. Customer service can make or break a business, especially given how easy it is to spread negative or positive reviews online.
Here are 5 ways to ensure your employees are customer-friendly.
1] Hire good managers
Good managers must walk a thin line between strict and friendly. A good manager will have clear, concise guidelines for how to respond appropriately when handling customer complaints or feedback.
2] Give employees leeway in solving a customer’s problem
However, customers like to be heard. As long as that what they’re hearing isn’t “no.” Giving your employees the ability to compromise with the customer will result in less “I’d like to speak to the manager.”
3] Train more than frontline employees about friendly customer interaction
When a customer is looking for assistance, they will likely seek out the first employee they come across. Regardless of whether that employee works in customer service or not. For that reason, all employees should have a basic understanding of what constitutes friendly customer service.
4] “I don’t know” isn’t an acceptable answer to any customer question
What doesn’t constitute friendly customer service is responding to a question with an “I don’t know.” If an employee doesn’t know, they should find someone who does.
5] Engage your employees in routine check-ins
Some managers make the mistake of thinking that training is the last time they need to interact with their employees. However, a daily check-in can help boost morale. A happy employee will result in happy customers.
Everyone has a bad day now and then. However, a customer service employee’s bad day can be a customer’s last day doing business with your company.
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