It makes sense that if you improve customer service, you will
increase customer loyalty. But improving customer service is not necessarily
easy. It takes more than a seminar or a motivational speaker. It takes effort
and time to make a sustainable improvement in the level of service you deliver
Not long ago I was talking with Dr. Alan Weiss about customer
service. Among the many good ideas he mentioned to improve customer service,
one stood out. Alan said “if you want to improve customer service in your
company, get a role model”. So,
with thanks to Dr. Weiss for his thought starter, here are some of my suggestions to find (or create) a
Remarkable Service role model in your company.
Almost every business has someone who stands out in how they
care for customers. They care about people and it shows. They always take an
extra step or two for their customers. They’re friendly, courteous, warm,
patient and knowledgeable about what your company does. They listen well and
they are focused on helping customers get what they want. They follow through
and they follow up. They are the people your customers ask for when they come
back. And they’re the employees your customers write letters about, telling you
how wonderful they are.
These are people you want others to emulate.
Your first step is to define what you want in your Remarkable
Service role model. What personality traits and behaviors do you want in this
person? Then prioritize them (because you’ll never get them all). Paint a picture
of your ideal employee, from your customer’s perspective. These are your Remarkable
You should include employees and customers in this process.
Get their input. Ask them to share their views on what they should expect from
your company. They will give you an incredible amount of valuable information.
Step two, watch, listen and learn. Pay attention to your
employees as they take care of your customers. Watch what they do and how they
do it. As you do this, remember the ideal employee profile you created in step
one. Make notes of how various employees measure against your Remarkable
Service standards. Then list these employees and rank them.
If you have one employee who is a perfect (or almost perfect
fit) great. You have your first role model. If not, pick a couple who offer the
best match. And make sure the group you select cover all the Remarkable Service
standards you created earlier. This way you will be able to model all the important
aspects of Remarkable Service to the rest of your employees.
(If you don’t have any employees who come close to meeting your
standards, then you need to think about adding or replacing staff. You can
train and coach a lot of things but you need to have good people to start with.
Once you have one or more role models, you then need to find
ways to transfer their Remarkable Service behaviors to the rest of your
employees. Here are some suggestions.