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Article : Extreme Customer Service for Extreme Times

#contactcenterworld, @SpeakerCPurvis

Author: Charlotte Purvis, Customer Service Consultant,

The times we are living in during a global health crisis due to COVID-19 create a need for what I call "Extreme Customer Service," a concept that I developed to guide clients through extreme times.

Extreme Customer Service is a 5-step process recommended for your critical situation, either external or internal. How is your team managing during the pandemic COVID-19? Has your customer satisfaction level been impacted? Are your customers expecting even more from your team?

You might experience "Extreme Times" due to an external situation on a global, national, regional, or local level, like a global health crisis or a major weather-related incident. Internally, it might be something like a quality issue. Or discontinuation or shortage of a particular product or service. Or it might be "headline news" that has resulted in bad publicity for your organization. On the good news side, it could be the launch of a breakthrough product or service. What is your plan for managing during extreme times – all while maintaining the highest level of customer service delivery?

Consider using this 5-step process as a foundation when responding to critical situations

  1. Choose a select group of Customer Service Professionals (CSPs)

    Consider starting with the best of the best. Invite the leaders to join you in developing an Extreme Customer Service team of CSPs who have demonstrated consistency in providing the highest level of customer service. Current high Customer Satisfaction scores are important, but you want to look for team members who have consistently delivered excellent customer service over the last several months.

  2. Develop a refresher training program

    Once your organization has settled on a solution for the critical event that triggered the need for Extreme Customer Service, it’s time to train your CSPs on exactly what to say and how to say it. Strong guidance here is key. Provide your select team with scripts and verbiage to use when discussing the critical situation and make sure they know who they can look to for support during this potentially stressful time.

  3. Be sure to seek buy-in from your select team of CSPs

    When you offer your top CSPs this opportunity to be part of the select team, be sure that they are in agreement with taking on this task. Seek confirmation that they are on board with your solution, are ready and willing to undergo extra training, and that the timing is right from a personal perspective.

  4. Conduct extra quality reviews during this time

    Your CSPs need consistent, quality feedback on their customer service delivery during times of crisis. You will want to increase regular reviews of customer interactions to make sure that you are getting a broad view of the quality of these interactions with your CSPs.

  5. Recognize and reward strong performance

    Regardless of whether your organization is in crisis mode, it’s just good business practice to recognize and reward strong performance. But rewarding your CSPs is especially important during these types of extreme situations. Acknowledge that you are putting your best Customer Service Professionals on the front line to help protect the image of your company.

After the situation is resolved
As you focus on resolving the current crisis, make sure you are also thinking about the future. This Extreme Customer Service process will create a protocol and system that you can come back to as needed. Importantly, make sure to keep track of the steps you take now, compile the lessons learned, and document everything.

#contactcenterworld, @SpeakerCPurvis


Company LogoAuthor: The Customer Communication Formula: How to communicate with your customers and boost your customer service brand. 20+ years of consulting, training, and coaching in contact centers and other customer service environments: Corporate, campus, church, community. Developed the 3-F Formula for customer communication. Influence over 1 million customer interactions each year. Plus I am a Customer Service Enthusiast--I enjoy being a customer and observing customer service in action.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Team Days

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Published: Monday, February 14, 2022

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