Next week is National Customer Service Week. Established by the International Customer Service Association in 1984 and proclaimed a national event by Congress in 1992, National Customer Service Week celebrates the work that customer service professionals do and emphasizes the importance of good customer service in any business.
In other words, it’s an opportunity to stop and appreciate the folks doing one of the hardest jobs in your office.
To commemorate the week, the International Customer Service Association has an entire week of suggested activities on its website. The one that strikes us as most interesting—and potentially the most beneficial—is Day Two’s itinerary: trading places.
That’s right. The International Customer Service Association wants executives to step in and take on the role of customer service representative.
That means it’s your turn to answer calls, field questions, and handle complaints.
Could you do it? Could you do it for an entire day? For a week?
We often look at customer service from a marketing perspective. But have you ever stopped and considered it from your customer service reps’ perspective?
In June, the CEO of Acquire, makers of customer service software, identified eight challenges that customer service agents face. Among them:
· being asked questions they can’t answer
· transferring calls to other departments
· lacking the right tools or technology to handle complex problems
· understanding what the customer wants
· dealing with angry customers
If you really want to celebrate your customer service department, find out what challenges your customer service representatives face. Talk to them. Observe them in action. Figure out what works for them and what doesn’t. Ask them for suggestions and input. Then, help them find solutions.
Your customer service representatives are likely the only human connection—among a sea of screens and technology—you have with your customers. Celebrate all they put up with and empower them to achieve more.