Shep Hyken shares a few of his favourite quotes on customer service – valuable reminders for creating the best customer experience.
In search of information? In today’s world, the first place we turn to learn about almost anything is the internet. Type a word or question into the Google search bar and it only takes a second to have a myriad of sites offering information on any selected topic.
Unfortunately, the overwhelming amount of information can present problems of its own – how do you find the most helpful and appropriate information? If it’s the best and latest knowledge on customer service that you seek, that’s where I come in. To be successful at my job, I read it all – books, articles, websites, and so on – looking for anything relevant to the topic of customer service.
Currently, there is a big push for the use of social media, and companies are developing a variety of new ways to reach the customer and deliver better service. Some information I read sparks my creativity to new ideas, but in the end, customer service lies in the tried-and-true basics of treating the customer right and delivering a quality product or service.
So, while you may be implementing some new, high-tech ways of reaching your customers, don’t forget the basics. Here are a few of my favorite quotes on customer service – valuable reminders for creating the best customer experience.
"Customer satisfaction is worthless. Customer loyalty is priceless." Jeffrey Gitomer
Don’t just try to satisfy your customers – satisfaction is not enough. Loyalty is what you need. Think about the word “satisfactory” – what does it mean? It means “okay” or “average.” If you are a restaurant owner, would it please you to know that the diners rated your food as “satisfactory”? Wouldn’t you rather have them raving that their meals were amazing or fantastic, planning to return again, and telling their friends the same? That’s more than satisfaction. That’s customer loyalty.
"If you're not serving the customer, your job is to be serving someone who is." Jan Carlzon
Even employees who don’t interact with the company’s outside customers need to be concerned about customer service – “internal customer service,” that is. If you are a member of the office staff or management, for example, your internal customers are the coworkers with whom you interact, others who are dependent upon you to perform your responsibilities so they can also fulfill theirs. Without proper interaction within the company, service to outside customers will also suffer.
"There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down simply by spending his money somewhere else." Sam Walton
If there was ever a successful businessman who realised what customers wanted, it was Sam Walton. And, he understood the importance of the customer relationship and the need to nurture it and keep it strong. Your business can’t survive without customers – you must treat them right or watch them walk out your door and down the street to your competitor.
"In the long run, no matter how good or successful you are or how clever or crafty, your business and its future are in the hands of the people you hire." Akio Morita, co-founder, Sony
This quote speaks to the importance of hiring the right people. Employees who interact with the customer are the face of your company – to the customer, they are the company. Hire those you can trust to build up your brand and your reputation. You are placing this person in a position of power – power to make the customer want to return, or not return. If you are not the one directly deciding who to hire, make sure the manager or department in charge of hiring understands the great responsibility of hiring the right people. Actually, it goes beyond hiring front-line employees – all the way to the top. Everyone, from the leaders and managers to office staff and customer representatives, must be dedicated to a customer-focused culture.
"If we are not customer driven, our cars won’t be either." Donald Peterson, former CEO, Ford Motor Company
This is the bottom line – customer service must be the driving force behind all of a company’s employees. Not just the front line. Not just a “customer service” department. Everyone in the organization must work to create a customer-focused culture, and embrace the philosophy. It involves all the quotes we have already discussed here. First, serve the internal customer in addition to the external customer (Jan Carlzon). Hire the right people (Akio Morita), and respect the power the customer has over your company’s success or failure (Sam Walton). Finally, strive for more than to just satisfy your customers. Wow them with an experience that ensures their continued loyalty (Jeffrey Gitomer).
I hope you recognise the truth and power that lie in these quotes. Don’t just read them – use them! Share them with your colleagues or at a team meeting and encourage further discussion. Consider ways to implement these expert ideas and use them to your company’s advantage. And if these leave you wanting even more, then go ahead and perform that Internet search. Hint: Google the phrase “best customer service quotes.”
Shep Hyken is a speaker and best selling author who works with companies and organisations who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. His articles have been read in hundreds of publications, and he is the author of Moments of Magic, The Loyal Customer and the Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestsellers, The Cult of the Customer and The Amazement Revolution, which was also recognised as a New York Times bestseller. He is also the creator of The Customer Focus program which helps clients develop a customer service culture and loyalty mindset.