Businesses can learn from National Customer Service Week by focusing on what makes customer service good or bad in their own business
Did your company celebrate National Customer Customer Service Week? If you haven’t heard of this little-known observation week, let’s fix that now. Sponsored by the non-profit International Customer Service Association (ICSA), National Customer Service Week ran from October 1 to October 5 in 2018 is about recognizing customer service professionals as the face of many companies.
This week couldn’t have been better timed. With a strong bull economy edging the U.S. forward for a while now, there’s been interesting talk surrounding customer service tendencies.
Is a good job market helping or hurting customer service?
Economists and critics have been posting analytical and opinion pieces constantly about the connection between a good economy and poor customer service. The theory is that more job openings that need to be filled leads to two things: desperate managers lowering their hiring standards, and upward-moving employees leaving their current position in search of better opportunities.
Many who actually work in customer service, of course, aren’t too happy with the commentary. Critics have argued that customer service doesn’t come naturally to everyone, there isn’t a lot of effective training, and often people in customer service positions are underappreciated or mistreated by management and customers alike.
Let’s face it: the face of the company matters immensely. Around two-thirds of consumers are willing to spend an average of 13% more money on goods and services from a specific company after they experience “good” customer service. That can make a big difference for any business.
So who’s at fault for poor service? Management? The customer? The employee? The employee’s former preschool teacher? It’s hard to gather empirical evidence on this sort of claim.
The idea that ‘customer service is bad right now because the economy is good’ is more based on hear-say than anything. However, we do know that customer service as an industry has a much higher turnover rate than the typical. It hovers around 30-45%, two to three times higher than most other industries. Clearly, something is happening where customer service employees don’t have much incentive to stay in their job.
The solution? Recognize Customer Service Week. Figure out if a customer service issue (whether you are an employee, customer, or manager) exists in your life and form some solutions.
For managers, it’s not as difficult as you think to lower turnover and create a positive customer service experience for your employees and clients. Follow some tips about respecting and celebrating your agents, including making their job streamlined as possible. The last step? Spread the CSW appreciation and make it year-round. Appreciated employees are happy and productive employees.
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