John DiJulius | Customer Experience Blog


Found Money | Business is Personal | Keeping the momentum | Customer Service incentive | Not making the customer wrong | Quote of the Week

“Changing the World by Creating a Customer Service Revolution…”  

A radical overthrow of conventional business mentality designed to transform what employees and customers experience.  This shift produces a culture that permeates into people’s personal lives, at home and in the community, which in turn provides the business with higher sales, morale and brand loyalty– making price irrelevant.

Found Money – Want to increase revenue without increasing advertising or labor? Customer service expert Jack Mackey proves that you can in his recent article, “Found Money: Want it or Not?” Mackey demonstrates how research has proven a staggering amount of money lost or gained per year by how well you manage your service breakdowns and your service recovering systems. I strongly encourage you to take 10 minutes and read his article to see how your company is stacking up.

Jack Mackey
Jack Mackey

All Business is Personal, it goes where it’s invited and stays where it’s appreciatedthat is Jack Mackey’s philosophy and message. Jack is one of our keynote presenters at the  2011 Secret Service Summit. As the Vice President at Service Management Group (SMG), he helps companies guide and energize their people to deliver remarkable service.  With more than 20 years of experience in customer service leadership, Jack is also co-author of The Total Customer Service System and The Manager’s Role as Coach.  He speaks on performance improvement strategies nationwide and is legendary for instilling a spirit of “celebrated discontent” in his audiences.

What gets recognized, gets repeatedOne of the best ways of keeping a World-Class customer service culture alive, without losing its momentum, is by finding ways to recognize your employees, locations or departments for delivering Above & Beyond service (Commandment VIII in What’s the Secret?) These range from soliciting, capturing and celebrating raving fans’ stories sent in from customers, to sharing them through signage, pre-shift huddles, awards, internal newsletters, and several other company communication mechanisms you use.

Excellent incentive Here is a best practice by Nestle, a consulting client of The DiJulius Group, and a company that has had their customer service management team in attendance at every annual Secret Service Summit. Nestle currently has a contest running where the employee with the best Above & Beyond story (voted on by their peers) from each of their customer service center locations wins an all expense-paid trip plus tuition to this year’s 2011 Secret Service Summit. This does several positive things: 1) It gets people to continue to think creatively to solve customer problems, 2) It generates more Above & Beyond stories so Nestle can use them to drive the awareness and service aptitude in their front lines, 3) Sometimes people who do great things, don’t do it for the recognition, and don’t bother to tell anyone what they did. A contest like this gets co-workers to tell on each other, and 4) The winners, the ones that “get it,” are rewarded by going to a two-day customer service conference with dozens of customer service experts and motivational speakers, thus giving them even more ideas and systems they can further use. Is it any wonder why Nestlé’s customer service has reached new levels over the past three years? Are there ways you can stimulate a stronger World-Class customer service culture?

Not making the customer wrongA favorite best practice I have learned from being a regular at Starbucks is how well they educate their customers in order for the customer to be able to adapt to their terminology, thus making their job more efficient. For example, if someone comes in and says, “I would like a big size, sugar-free vanilla, with non-fat milk, latte,” the Barista will confirm the order by saying something like, “certainly, you want a venti skinny vanilla latte.” This just taught the customer how to articulate their drink more quickly in Starbucks’ language, which reduces time and improves accuracy of the order. Best of all, the customer wasn’t made to feel stupid.

Quote of the week

“The biggest tragedy isn’t death — it is living without a sense purpose and a lack of passion. It is not being blind; it is having sight but no vision.”

~John DiJulius best-selling author, consultant, and keynote speaker, is the CVO of The DiJulius Group, the leading customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on customer experience trends and best practices. Learn more about The DiJulius Group or The Secret Service Summit, America’s #1 Customer Service Conference.

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YOUR CUSTOMER SERVICE IS EITHER WORKING FOR YOU OR AGAINST YOU
December 14, 2009, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Customer Service | Tags: , , ,

John DiJulius

The Slight Edge

One of the best books I have read in a while is The Slight Edge, by Jeff Olson. The “slight edge” means doing those little things correctly today that have a huge impact down the road. In other words, whether you work out today or you don’t really doesn’t matter — today. Whether you save a dollar today or you don’t, really doesn’t matter today.
Success is a habit of making the right, un-dramatic, insignificant choices that compound over time to create a progression of substantial growth.

One of the biggest reasons companies do not put nearly as much emphasis into customer service as they should is because there seems to be no immediate impact. We live in an “instant” society that demands immediate results. Marketing, sales promotion and cutting expenses provide immediate results that executives can see. However, many times those things do not have a lasting positive business impact. If your organization provides World-Class customer service today or it doesn’t really doesn’t matter — today. If you go above and beyond today for a customer, it really has no impact on the bottom line — today. If you resolve a customer challenge or if you don’t really doesn’t matter — today. However, nothing will impact the health of your customer retention, sales, profits, morale, and turnover as much as providing superior service consistently over a period of time. To get managers to be disciplined, patient, not to cut corners or stray away from the plan for a short-term gain is the true underlying obstacle.

Can’t Afford Not To

You say your customer service isn’t where you would like it to be? You say increasing the training for company-wide commitment isn’t in the budget this year? I am telling you; you can’t afford not to invest in improving your customers’ experience and create a world-class customer service organization!

Expense or Investment?

Let’s look at Starbucks, already the service leader in their industry. In an online article written by Shareef Mahdavi, President of SM2 Consulting, Mahdavi shows how Starbucks does not rest on their laurels. Starbucks closed all 11,000 locations in the US one afternoon in February for a 3-hour training session involving 150,000 workers. What most businesses would view as a huge blow to revenue, Starbucks sees as a focus on longer-term sustainable results.

By John DiJulius

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