Good customer service is very critical in making any business successful today as improving customer satisfaction is the key to sustaining and growing a customer base.

It is important for all businesses to equip their staff with the why’s and how’s of achieving excellent customer service.

There are a lot of issues to be addressed in the discussion of how to win your customers’ hearts.

These include developing a service vision and mindset, mapping service strategies, being empowered to delight the customer and building lasting customer relationships.

If you are in the service line, here is how you can go beyond your customer’s expectations to offer service excellence:

What do customers really want?

* On-time delivery. Service delays are not acceptable. Customers closely monitor how fast you can deliver and how time-efficient your service is. Being on time every time avoids complaints and keeps customers coming back.

* Product knowledge. Customers appreciate it when all their enquiries are answered and their needs attended to. Keep yourself updated at all times with relevant and accurate information on the company’s products and services and effectively communicate this to your customers.

* Professionalism and friendliness. Building strong customer relationships is the strategic approach to keeping your customers loyal. Be as approachable as you can while maintaining a professional manner. Customers like being served by positive, cheerful service staff. They feel more at ease and will appreciate your service and passion.

* Customised and personalised service. Identify customers requiring additional attention and tailor your service to meet their needs. Try to recognise every opportunity to delight your customer and act upon it swiftly without breaking any company guidelines and rules.

* Initiative and proactivity. Customers appreciate recommendations and guidance from people who know the products best. Be proactive in telling them what would suit their requirements. Give your customers some guidance and let them experience the joy of doing business with you each and every time.

* Consistency in service delivery. Customer service should not end after just one encounter or business transaction. Consistency is important to retain customers and attract new ones.

Good service now and bad service later is merely putting the initial good service and effort to waste. A reputation that took years to build can be destroyed by just one bad customer experience.

Remember, do something right and someone remembers; do something wrong and it could spread like wildfire — especially with the help of social media today.

Businesses should realise how valuable their customers are and their impact on the company’s competitiveness.

Learning and practising how to delight customers will keep old customers loyal and attract new ones.

Delight customers further with innovation 

As a service frontliner, are you tired of performing the same tasks every day?

Maybe what you need is to rekindle the spirit of innovation to successfully think up and execute great ideas to help boost your company’s customer base and bottom line.

Service innovation involves thinking of ways to continuously improve customer service, enhance the customer experience and increase competitiveness.

By being innovative, you not only satisfy your customer’s needs, but you also get to develop the skills that could help you become a better service employee and get the recognition you deserve.

Here’s how you can get started:  

* Acknowledge the fact that there is a need for innovation. Identify internal and external situations and opportunities for service innovation.

* Identify your role and responsibilities in the company and find out how you can excel in your job.

* Recognise that you can benefit from the diverse thinking styles of team members and learn to collaborate with them.

* Practise generating ideas to enhance customer experience. Select the feasible ones, refine their execution, then implement them.

Most people crave to be appreciated and taken care of. Your customers are no different. By putting in genuine effort to keep your customers happy, you are already helping your company rise above the competition.