As I travel the world and work with clients from all types of industries, they all recognize the importance of customer service and the role it plays in marketing, sales, growth and revenue.
As I do I continue to push my philosophy: Customer service is not a department. It’s a philosophy to be embraced by every member of an organization, from the CEO to the most recently hired.
When asked how to go about that, the conversation always shifts to creating a culture that is customer focused. That means every decision that is made has the customer in mind. In addition, everyone in the organization understands the role they play in the overarching customer service strategy as well as the entire customer experience (CX).
The best companies create policies and procedures that are customer focused. They train their people – all of their people, not just the front line – to the culture. Many times there is a playbook that clearly explains how to handle certain situations, issues, problems and complaints. This is essential to the training. Yet, it is from this point I want to go a higher level.
Culture is about philosophy, not policy
We learn a lot in training. Even our onsite trainers and online courses teach the “how to” in many situations. But in the end, it’s not always about what we’ve been taught. It’s not about the specific techniques we learn in a role play. No, it’s about simply doing the right thing.
Some might think this hard to teach, yet I’ll argue that it may not be as hard as one might think.
Here are the steps:
While this may be an oversimplification of a process to push philosophy over policy, it makes sense. And while I believe that philosophy trumps policy, there are still boundaries, which is why it’s important to hire the right people and train them to the philosophy. And once you’re there, you and your customers will reap the benefit of an organization that roots themselves in a customer focused philosophy.