What It Takes To Be An Entrepreneur
Gaining the Edge Through Customer Service
Written by Samuel Muriithi for Gaebler Ventures
The type of customer service that you receive when you visit any business premise regardless of whether it is physical or even online will almost always inform your decision to or not to do business with that product/service provider again. What are the elements of superior customer service that you and your employees should adopt to keep ahead of the competition?
Offering superior customer service is all about placing and prioritizing the needs of your customers and ensuring that with you, they can always find the best products/services at the most competitive prices.
The link between outstanding customer service and a healthy business is rather obvious to everyone. There is just no way that you can treat your customers recklessly and still continue to hope that they'll come back for the same nasty experience.
The basic tenets about offering outstanding customer service are such that you should not be happy if your customers are not happy and that you should not be satisfied as long as your customers are not satisfied with what they are getting from you. These are the tenets and attitudes that you and your employees, if any, should adopt if you hope to invoke a sense of loyalty from your base of customers. It is the superior customer service you offer that will draw new business your way and keep you and your team in employment.
Some employees wrongly assume that the task of offering superior customer service lies squarely with their employer or with the management. As a business owner this is one of the foremost misconceptions that you should nip in the bud at the earliest opportunity. Every employee should understand that it is satisfied customers who pay for their salaries. You should however make it easy for your employees to offer the outstanding customer service you expect them to by ensuring that their working conditions are equally conducive. Customers tend to equate the type of service they get from employees with the general attitude that a business has towards them. If they get a negative attitude from the employees they will easily assume that this is the negative way you handle business as the owner.
So important is superior customer service that there are international standards like the ISO 9001:2000 dedicated to quality management. This particular standard makes an assessment of what individual organizations do to offer quality to their customers and the effort these put in providing customer satisfaction on a platform of gradual improvement.
Samuel Muriithi is a business owner in Nairobi, Kenya. He has extensive international business experience in the United States and India.
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