Prior to doing what I do now, I worked in retail for a good few years. It was in these jobs that I learnt my valuable customer service skills which to this day I pride myself with. One thing always stands out from those days and that was during one training course, we were told “we are all each other’s customer’.
I remember what a difference it made to my customers when I made them feel important. Whether this was with a simple smile and a thank you, or if I went the extra mile and helped them find the product they were looking for. It was important to me that they left the shop feeling valued. I didn’t want to be known as the grumpy sales associate, so I went the extra mile every day.
It set me up for all my future jobs where customer service was of great importance. In the past, I have worked for a housing association in their customer services department. I then went on to work for their repairs and maintenance department in the office. I then moved on to managing their complaints, before finally being moved to their head office where I was a Receptionist. This was before I left to have my Little Man and now I find myself working for a family law firm. All of these roles have the same thing in common – they are all customer focussed and all of them have great customer service at the forefront.
What is good customer service?
Good customer service is so important to me and so when I cast my eyes over the infographic below, put together by CCSN, about what people look for when receiving great customer service, I was really interested in their findings.
Good customer service means different things to different people, so I took to asking some fellow bloggers some examples of customer service that has impressed them recently.
Vicki, familytravelwithellie.com – Receiving exceptional customer service always fills me with happiness, in just the same way that poor customer service infuriates me. Recently I took my daughter to have her ears pierced. She was very nervous and the two girls who dealt with her were really fantastic. They were kind, conscientious and gave her a fantastic experience. I was so grateful to them, honestly, it was such a big day for her and they made it really special.
Jo, cupoftoast.co.uk – Exceptional customer service is sometimes just something as simple as making eye contact with the person being served and engaging with them. Generalising here but I tend to find smaller shops are much better at this than larger shops.
Sinead, sineadlatham.com – After being in Customer Service for most of my working life, I find exceptional customer service is all about the individual, and how they embrace their company ethos. It’s clear when someone couldn’t care less. But those moments where people will bend over backwards (and usually for the smallest of queries) makes you want to go back and talk about them. I’m an avid supporter of small businesses, as you get to know them and their service is genuine and from the heart. Money or training can’t buy that passion.
Laura, edinburghwithkids.com – I recently really enjoyed shopping at a local boutique. The lady working took time to help me and then talk to my 5-year-old daughter. She asked her really engaging questions and included her in our shopping. I was so impressed and would go back in an instant.
Katy, hotpinkwellingtons.co.uk – I’m always impressed with our local M&S. My son recently dropped his gingerbread man on the floor of the cafe and I said he couldn’t have anymore. A lovely lady appeared with another one for him before he could even raise his voice to have a tantrum! It’s little things like that that really give the personal touch, I was so surprised and touched.
As somebody who has pretty much always worked in a customer focused environment, it’s always interesting to find out what people expect when it comes to customer service. I always find it comes down to the same thing. If we treat others how we expect to be treated then we can’t go far wrong.
A smile and a thank you costs absolutely nothing and these two simple things can change somebody’s entire day.
What does good customer service mean to you? Have you received excellent service recently that you were super impressed with? Let me know in the comments. You can also join in the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #AtYourService. I look forward to reading all of them.
written in collaboration