In general, we can probably all agree on a few traits of great customer service:
Responsiveness to inquiries and issues
A pleasant manner when dealing with customers
Terrific problem-solving abilities
But, does really good customer service take more than that? At Droste, we've long been recognized by our clients for our commitment to customer service. Certainly, our responsiveness is a key component of our client satisfaction, but I would have to say that great customer service transcends the three key areas listed above.
Personally, I believe great customer service has to do with commitment; a commitment to not only customers, but to our products and our mission, and a commitment to resolving problems and issues efficiently.
What does this commitment look like? My guess is it looks a little different for everyone. For Apple, it looks like an outstanding user-friendly end product that's backed with support most customers will never need. For Disney, it involves paying special attention to child-aged guests, knowing that if the kids are happy, the parents are happy.
For my organization, it involves multi-disciplinary conversations between programmers, support staff and myself to uncover the best solution and implement it. It means not accepting that the first result is the only result. It means testing every option a couple of times before passing it along to the client so we can be sure implementation will go as smoothly as possible. In short, it means never settling for satisfactory work; it means striving for extraordinary.
Think of the companies that you patronize time and again. What do they have in common? Some might make your favorite chocolate or sell the best beef in town, but my guess is that the biggest unifying factor is their commitment to customer service. Because the secret to gaining and retaining customers isn't really a secret: it's all about commitment.
Until my next post, take care and prosper,