Customer Service – is it really still out there?
Is this yet ANOTHER blog on customer service?
Yes, it is, but I truly believe there is something to be learned by reading this specific one. In this age of social media, texting, and emails, I wonder how customer service is perceived in this “instant” society. Has the modern era for messaging really replaced personal communication? Maybe I am approaching it from an “older” perspective, but in my opinion, there is still a place for personal communication and phone calls.
I would like to share my own experience on customer service with you. I had recently suffered from a tooth infection while traveling abroad. The pain was excruciating, and I still had another day before returning to Canada; however, I was not home yet. Long (and painful!) story short, I decided to call a dentist that I had seen a few times in that city. She immediately took my call, and would not hang up until she knew the issue and had not only referred me to a specialist for the problem, but also made the appointment while I was on the phone. I agree this could have been completed via email or text, however, their concern was for my comfort and safety, the reassurance that I received had helped me face that last day.
What is intriguing is that the customer service did not stop there. After I had seen the specialist, the dentist phoned me the next day to see how I was feeling, and how best to proceed with the infection. Unfortunately, the treatment involved surgery, which was out of her scope of practice; but-guess where I will be going from now on? I will be referring friends and family to her as well. The dentist went well beyond typical customer service: not only to help me out, but also to put me at ease during a traumatic time. No matter how hard you try, the same results cannot be achieved via email or text.
Sometimes I wonder if we have not gone too far in the direction of only using social media for communication. For example, how can you calm an upset customer in an email or text? A phone call would go a long way in soothing the person and solving the problem. A customer may not always be right, but they are always the customer. Today, competition is fierce. Impeccable customer service and going beyond the call of duty goes a long way in retaining customers, and building new ones. Don’t forget that personal touch, and how much it means to us!
The next time you have a client or customer in need, try picking up the phone instead of blasting off that text or email. I know that I will be!