Things NOT to Say to a Customer

Things NOT to Say to a Customer

By Nancy Friedman, Keynote/Workshop Customer Service Speaker; President, Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training It shouldn’t matter what industry; there simply are things that should NOT – OK, NEVER, be said to customers. I received this email from a LinkedIn friend (@Joan Lerch) about an exasperating answer to a statement she recently experienced. She joins the long list of what not to say to a customer. Read her short, yet great, story. Do not tell an unhappy customer they should NOT be unhappy. Denver hotel clerk at 6:30 am: “How was everything?” Customer: “Well, not great. No hot water and a very early flight. Had to scamper down the hall to the room next door and grab a shower with still chilly, but bearable water.” Clerk: “Oh well! Sometimes the water just takes a while to make the trip. You know, just like at home!” Customer: “No. At home the faucet produces HOT water. Every time.” (The first clerk said “the plumbing in that part of the building is problematic.”) Why is it so difficult to acknowledge a screw-up? Thank you, Joan, for sharing. I hear lots of horror stories; things customers cannot believe people say to them. Here’s my own

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6 Tried & True Listening Tips

6 Tried & True Listening Tips

By Nancy Friedman, Keynote/Workshop Customer Service Speaker; President, Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training   Listening isn’t the same as hearing. Think about a commercial for a product you have no interest in; it’s easy to tune that information out, isn’t it? Hearing is one thing, but listening and mentally absorbing the thoughts is another thing. That’s why we say listening is an art – not a science. While it’s easy to ‘hear’ what the customer says, great customer service begins with great listening skills. Here are 6 steps to help you become a better listener. And if you think you’re already a pretty good listener, pass this along to someone who could also benefit from improved listening skills. TIP #1 – DECIDE TO BE A BETTER LISTENER In school, you’re taught to read, write, do math, and dozens of other topics. I don’t know about you, but in all my schooling, I don’t ever recall having a course on listening. And yet, as we all know, listening is an important, some would say even a crucial skill. The first step is all about you – your personal commitment to be a better listener. You need to decide to be a

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Ineffective Email Words & Phrases – Are You Guilty?

Ineffective Email Words & Phrases – Are You Guilty?

By Nancy Friedman, Customer Service Expert; President, Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training We did a survey a while back at one of my speaking engagements. I wanted to know what really bugged folks about emails they received. Without hesitation, the top 3 were: * Poor spelling and grammar – Your, you’re; there, their, they’re; here, hear; to, too, two and the list goes on. * Email that are too long; too wordy. * Wrong subject lines that don’t match the body copy. There were others, but these rose to the top. I’m about to share a few of the phrases used in emails that are not very effective. They are not bad; simply useless and unnecessary (i.e., not needed). When these phrases are eliminated, the emails usually read better; sound stronger. Here we go: “Just a note to let you know…”or “Just wanted to say…” or “I’m just checking back to see where we are on the order.” JUST is a weak, wimpy word. Not necessary. In fact, lame and useless. Eliminate the word JUST in your sentences. Read those sentences without the word “just” and see how much stronger they become. “As I (or you) mentioned on the phone”or “Pursuant to our call (conversation, whatever).” Double work, not needed, not

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2018 TOP JOBS FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE – WITH SOME CAVEATS

2018 TOP JOBS FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE – WITH SOME CAVEATS

By Nancy Friedman, Customer Service Speaker; President, Telephone Doctor Customer Service   One of the hottest job sectors in 2018 will be in customer service. According to a story in USA Today, several industries will be hiring and stepping up their customer service to compete and attract and keep customers. Of the top five selected – they all have one thing in common. The need for customer service training. (But then don’t they all????) Computer Support Specialists – IT departments in nearly every office in corporate America depend too much on technology and not enough on personalized service. Many computer support specialists come into the job unprepared in the field of customer service and communication skills. They nail it on the computer and fail it with the human touch side. It’s one of the top areas where customer service skills are desperately needed. Computer schools teach technology, but most don’t teach customer service. Financial Clerks – Those who work in the industry clearly have their numbers down cold. They couldn’t get the job without that. But while they are number experts, many lack communication skills. They tend to talk ‘over’ the customer’s head and miscommunications are high. So, there’s a big need

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