Don’t Let Constraints Kill Customer Service
“I wish I could, but unfortunately I can’t…”. That’s the typical sentence that expresses a sense of frustration. Did you ever utter these words? Well, in the past I did it more than once. Today I hear many people saying similar things – whether they refer to their life or their jobs. As a consultant, I meet many customer service managers, and most of them feel a bit frustrated. The reason? They would do much more to improve quality and efficiency but they struggle with high hurdles.
The (Lack Of) Budget Mantra
As a consultant, I meet many customer service managers. Most feel frustrated. They would do much more to improve quality and efficiency but they face some hurdles. Here are the most frequent ones:
→ Lack of budget: No money is allocated to the customer service department – or to customer experience – because there are always “other priorities to come first”
→ Insufficient number of customer service staff: Due to the lack of budget, it’s not possible to hire more staff – even when conversation volumes grow
→ Extra tasks: Staff spending part of their work time for NON-customer activities (sigh!). That happens where the customer service department is still considered as a cost center instead of a profit center
TIP: don’t ignore new customer service trends because they are transforming the way to do BUSINESS and offer great opportunities.
All the above-mentioned hurdles kill customer service. But there’s even more. This leads to negative consequences that damage both performances and customer satisfaction. In fact, frustration is the number one cause of staff demotivation. And customers immediately perceive while having conversations with support assistants.
Question for you: how would you feel entering a shop and dealing with a nervous – or worse, angry assistant? Would you come back again?
But this is just half of the problem. In fact, when even the customer service manager becomes demotivated, s/he is no longer able to lead the team. This negative spiral is very risky because such issues are not just customer service problems, as the whole business is at stake.
Useful read: the theory of constraints in a service organization.
Over To You
If you kill customer service, you’re threatening your own business. As I don’t suppose you have suicidal tendencies yet, you need to deliver excellent support to beat your competitors. Just know that there is no shortcut to achieving this goal. It’s time to invest MONEY in customer service.
Have great conversations.
You may also want to read: 5 Customer Service Trends You Shouldn’t Miss
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