How to Provide Uncommon Customer Service
In order to excel at what is most important to customers, let the unimportant go.
(Boonton, NJ, March 22, 2012) — Service organizations can't be good at everything. Trying to do it all brilliantly will lead almost inevitably to mediocrity. In order to differentiate themselves, they must "deliberately underperform on the things their customers value least, so they can over-deliver on the things they value most," say Frances Frei and Anne Morriss, in the March issue of Customer Service Newsletter.
Frei and Morriss, authors of "Uncommon Service: How to Win by Putting Customers at the Core of Your Business," offer the following suggestions for providing uncommon service:
- To achieve service excellence, you must be bad in the service of good. This means delivering on the service dimensions your customers value most, and to make this possible — profitable and sustainable — performing poorly on the dimensions they value least.
- The primary obstacle to service excellence is not the ambition to be great, but the stomach to be bad. This is an emotional obstacle for many companies.
- It is difficult to compete without understanding your customers' needs and how well your competitors are meeting those needs. Fortunately, customers are typically very willing to give you that information. And it's relatively cheap and easy to ask them for it.
- There are two key ways to improve service: 1) More effectively meet your customers' existing needs in areas that they value; 2) Convince your customers that they need something that you already do well.
About the Customer Service Group
For more than 20 years, the Customer Service Group has helped customer service, call center and help desk managers increase productivity, improve service quality and boost customer satisfaction, loyalty and retention. The Customer Service Group publishes Customer Service Newsletter and The Customer Communicator.