Why the World of Customer Service Stinks

I hear so many comments about how the current state of customer service is poor and far below what it used to be, so I thought it was important to talk about some of the main reasons why customer service is so bad nowadays.

Here are my top 10 reasons in no particular order:

  1. Many people are not raised in such a way that they know how to communicate with courtesy and respect.
  2. Individuals are much more self-centered today than in the past, and in customer service, you need to be more other-centered.
  3. Even with all the MBAs that exist in the business leaders of today, too few of them truly understand the financial benefits of high levels of customer satisfaction and retention.
  4. Customer service still is not as sexy as sales and marketing.  It seems more exciting to ring the bell with a new sale than to keep a customer by serving them well.
  5. Customers’ expectations for turnaround time is much higher today, and that has caused organizations – which have not changed the reality of their turnaround times and responsiveness – to meet fewer expectations.
  6. Since there are so many different ways to deliver customer service and deliver products with the advent of the internet, IVR telephone systems, and other technologically-driven means, with variety comes complexity, and with complexity come quality concerns and with consistency in any business.
  7. Organizations care too much about short-term transaction-oriented costs and too little about long-term relationship-oriented value and profitability.
  8. Building World Class Customer Service organizations is something that’s rarely taught from a strategic perspective.
  9. There is an arrogance of thought that customer service is something very easy to do and only needs to be done by low-paid, less educated individuals.  In fact, delivering exceptional service can be very complex and yet very fun, and requires individuals who can quickly change their mindset, change their focus, and have a balance of technical knowledge, organizational knowledge, and customer focus.
  10. Most organizations, especially small businesses, are born from entrepreneurs who know how to sell, sell, sell or who love a product and want to deliver that product.  These leaders are either acquisition-focused or product-focused, but to sustain those businesses, they at some point have to mature as a business and transition towards customer service and relationship building.

Service may stink out there, but those of us who care about it will always have a tremendous niche and tremendous value in the business world.

Interested in improving your company’s customer service?  See more information at:  http://www.cssamerica.com/

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