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Take Care of Yourself Before You Take Care of Your Customer


One of the most important questions people ask when they are focused on improving their quantity and quality of business is: "What is my competitive advantage? What makes me unique, memorable, special? what truly sets me apart from the rest?"

While there are no definitively right answers to that question, most people come to some conclusion that customer service is a critical component of your competitive advantage. For most businesses, the service they offer can vary from exceptional to not so hot, depending upon circumstances.

Why is that? Why does the same company, and even the same people within that company provide world class service some of the time, and marginal service (or worse) other times?

That answer can be found in asking a different question: "What makes you (or your staff) happy when serving your customers?" While these answers also vary, most people come up with some sort of variation of "I am happy when my customer is happy."

Do we enjoy dealing with agitated or disgruntled people? Normally not. We derive our joy from delivering value, by making others feel good about their experience, and by exceeding people's expectations.

What comes first then? The happy customer or the happy person serving the customer? This is not the chicken or the egg quandary. The happy person serving the customer NEEDS to come first, because it is a very unusual day when your customer comes into your business looking to cheer YOU up.

This all seems very obvious. At the same time that many people realize this truth, it israre that people consciously take steps to make sure that their greatest customer service assets are being serviced too - whether that person in on your staff, in another department, or if that person is YOU. It is critical that you continually improve the emotional, physical and mental support you are supplying to the people serving your customers.

One of my friends and colleagues, Paul Wesselemann, shared a story about his time working at an HIV/AIDS support network. He explained how it was absolutely unacceptable to come to work when you were feeling even a bit ill, as even the smallest cold could be extremely dangerous for someone with HIV. He was REQUIRED first and foremost to take care of himself, make sure he was 100% before he was allowed to offer help and support to others.

How committed are you to taking the same care of YOUR needs? Your task for the month is to identify and act upon a couple of ways to keep you in proper shape so you can take care of your always important customers.

Eric Plantenberg, President of Freedom Speakers and Trainers, currently trains professionals across the country in memory, goal setting, attitude, time management, and effective communications. His newest program, P.A.C.T., is an intensive one-on-one twelve week personal coaching program designed for those who are serious about their success. Please click here for more information on Eric http://www.deliverfreedom.com/speakers_eric.html or Freedom Speakers and Trainers http://www.deliverfreedom.comCall 888-233-0407 x112 email eric@deliverfreedom.com


MORE RESOURCES:

Customer Service - Google News

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Busse: The intersection of customer service and social media - Long Island Business News


Long Island Business News

Busse: The intersection of customer service and social media
Long Island Business News
randi-busse If you're a regular social media user, you're probably familiar with people using these channels to make complaints, praise companies, start a discussion, or indulge in a mud-slinging match. Online social media communications have changed ...

55% Of Consumers Welcome Customer Service Chatbots - Retail TouchPoints


55% Of Consumers Welcome Customer Service Chatbots
Retail TouchPoints
Chatbots — AI applications that simulate human conversation — are becoming more pervasive in online and mobile customer service, and acceptance of them is growing: 55% of American consumers, and 65% of Millennials, report that they want chatbots ...

Joseph E. Huerta: Not pleased with Comcast's customer service - Longmont Times-Call


Joseph E. Huerta: Not pleased with Comcast's customer service
Longmont Times-Call
I continued to view charges on page 3, listing "Your new charges" in detail — bundle, additional services and equipment, and then the red flag, "other charges and credits," including a broadcast TV fee (paid in TV starter) and regional sports fee (no ...

Exceptional Customer Service And Low Cost Are Not Mutually Exclusive -- Here's How To Achieve Both - Forbes


Forbes

Exceptional Customer Service And Low Cost Are Not Mutually Exclusive -- Here's How To Achieve Both
Forbes
Singapore Airlines (SIA) cabin crew undergo some of the most rigorous service training in the industry, instilling a business culture that is exceptionally customer-centric. As a result, it is regularly voted one of the best airlines in the world. Yet ...

These Two Customer Service Formulas Can Improve Employee Performance By 100% - Forbes


Forbes

These Two Customer Service Formulas Can Improve Employee Performance By 100%
Forbes
Even the most engaged, best-intentioned employees (and their managers) can benefit from knowing a couple essential expert formulas that will improve their customer service performance day in and day out. Today I'll share two rules of thumb how to ...

MTA, union deal will create hundreds of new 'customer service ... - New York Post

Seven Customer Service Practices That Will Help You Win Over Clients - Forbes


Forbes

Seven Customer Service Practices That Will Help You Win Over Clients
Forbes
Back in the mid-90s when Amazon was first starting, I felt that Amazon gave me the best customer service and best customer experience. Instead of jumping around different websites, I had everything in one portal. In Amazon I found a company that gave ...

Why is Customer Service in Asia so Terrible? - Forbes - Forbes


Why is Customer Service in Asia so Terrible? - Forbes
Forbes
Asia's service sector is booming. This article takes a closer look at how this lucrative sector is developing. Don't miss out on the investment opportunities that are ...

and more »

Telefonica suspends customer service operations in Guatemala after killings - Reuters


Telefonica suspends customer service operations in Guatemala after killings
Reuters
GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - The Guatemalan unit of telecommunications firm Telefonica SA suspended its customer service operations and closed its shops over the weekend after three of its employees were shot to death in the Central American nation.

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