Should You Always Listen to the Customer? [Infographic]


Customer

How your business interacts with customers is essential to its success. While hearing out customer complaints or feedback is helpful to determine what’s working or what’s not, there are times when it’s equally as important to move forward.

It’s easy to spend all of your time fixing what’s broken, but you may want to take a step back to evaluate if this is helping your business grow. If care is not taken, you may miss out on valuable opportunities to innovate, shock and surprise your customers, or challenge people’s thinking particularly if you’re an entrepreneur or business owner looking for ways to move the needle.

While listening to your customer is important, check out this infographic below by Valpak for a different perspective on the topic. They list company scenarios, marketing tips, and common customers you’ll face along the way.

when-not-to-listen-to-your-customer

Feel free to share on social networks. Find the buttons below this post. This opinion article is for informational purposes only.

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Brought to you by Valpak

Post submitted by Megan Darmody

Edited by Temitope Adelekan

Are You Experienced? Customer Vs Organisation.


customer-experience-infographic-5-08-15

Thanks to Bain & Company for the wonderful Infographic. I found the information very useful and i thought i should share it with you all. My favourite question is “In the eyes of your customers, what do you stand for?”. If every leader, CEO, employers and employees can genuinely provide an answer to the above questions, walk the talk, It will make a great difference! in the experience journey of every customer and in return add excellent value to the organisation.

Thanks for taking out time to read through. Feel free to share on social networks and drop your suggestions or contributions below.

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The Modern Boss


PLDT-modern-boss_infographic

Are you modern in the way you lead the people under you? Remember that meeting the demands of customers/employees starts from the internal before the external. What kind of relationship do you build with your people?

See also: 8 entrepreneurial skills you should teach your kids (infographic)

Thanks for taking out time to read through. Feel free to share on social networks, drop your suggestions below or contributions.

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Infographic source/credit: Click here

25 Skills For Excellent Customer Service (Infographic)


top-25-customer-service-skills

See also: 8 entrepreneurial skills you should teach your kids

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Infographic source: Click here

Make Your customers Happy


Customers are seen as the genesis of any business. According to the statistics published by Small Business Administration (SBA), within the first five years more than half of small businesses fail and a third survive ten years or more. One of the key factors that can cause the downfall of an organisation is customer dissatisfaction. This makes it essential for organisations to constantly try to satisfy and meet the demands of their customers. Knowing that customers can either be internal or external, organisations need to have appropriate plans in place to meet the needs of the types of customers that we have which will in turn lead to improved customer satisfaction.

Above is an infographic on how to Increase customer satisfaction and make customer happy. Infographic published originally by Leah Norris on Creditdonkey.com

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Improving customer satisfaction: 5 important articles to read


Customers are seen as the genesis of any business. According to the statistics published by Small Business Administration (SBA), within the first five years more than half of small businesses fail and a third survive ten years or more. One of the key factors that can cause the downfall of an organisation is customer dissatisfaction. This makes it essential for organisations to constantly try to satisfy and meet the demands of their customers. Knowing that customers can either be internal or external, organisations need to have appropriate plans in place to meet the needs of the types of customers that we have which will in turn lead to improved customer satisfaction.

Find below the links to theses great articles:

1. The magic words customers wants to hear. Written by the staff of Entrepreneur Media, Inc posted on Entrepreneur.com

2. 7 Things customers don’t want to hear. Written by Max, posted on JitBit Blog

3. Top 16 things customers want. Written by Kevin Stirtz, posted on allBusiness.com

4. 7 Things customers want to see on your About page. Written by Gail Oliver, posted on business2community.com

5. 7 Things you should never say to your customers. Written by Amy Castro, posted on The performance communication blog

I hope this is helpful to you and feel free to add your own suggestions and contributions.

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Thank you.

15 Customer Retention Strategies that Work


Taking charge of the most profitable recurring customers is a great way to build business success because keeping good customers is less costly than regularly finding new ones. Therefore, Customer retention can be seen as the action that a business undertakes in order to reduce customer shortcomings. Before a business can claim a successful customer retention, it depends on the kind of contact or relationship such business builds with its customer at present and throughout an entire lifetime. To continuously improve your existing customer retention strategy, here are 15 Customer Retention Strategies that Works as published by Gregory Ciotti on Help Scout. (Click here to read).

Don’t forget to check out my past articles on how to know your team role and also, how to use SERVQUAL model, 5WHYS and PDSA tools to improve your customer service processes. Thanks for your time.

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How To Use SERVQUAL Model, 5WHYS And PDSA Cycle Tools To Improve Your Customer Service Processes


Without customers, there won’t be a product, there wont be people working tirelessly to provide solutions to the needs of people. With this knowledge, understanding how customers feel about a service, what they think of a service, how satisfied they are about a service etc. is key and this can contribute to the growth of any business (Increased profit, Customer loyalty and retention etc.) which is why a whole department is dedicated to that cause to show how important customers are to any business). A customer service department handles all customer related affairs of a business. They are the first point of contact. Delivery of services in this department impacts on customer experience and having an effective customer service process in place can help ensure customer satisfaction which can then lead to retention, loyalty and growth. Here are the 3 required tools you can use to improve your customer service delivery processes: –

Tool 1: SERVQUAL METHODOLOGY

Servqual is a service quality-measuring model that can be used to measure and manage the quality of service in an organisation. Service quality plays an important role in most service firms and it is antecedent to other concepts of profitability, customer satisfaction, customer loyalty and customer retention. To measure this, a questionnaire is deployed to understand and measure the expectations and experience of customers regarding a particular service offered to them. The survey will be used to identify a gap in the customer’s perception and expectation of a particular service.

The survey questions are asked following the dimensions of SERVQUAL known as “RATER” (Responsiveness, Assurance, Tangibility, Empathy and Reliability). This model allows customer service experiences to be investigated and measured quantitatively. This has been used extensively by service delivery organisations and it can be adapted to suit your study area e.g. if you want to apply servqual in a grocery settings, “Products (P)” can be added to the original model (RATER) and measured to understand how customers feel about the offering, making the new dimension “RATERP” in measuring and managing service quality in this context. The customization attribute of SERVQUAL is applicable to all service areas, which makes it one of the most widely used tools in measuring the quality of a service.

The original 5 dimensions (RATER) are briefly explained below:

  • Reliability: This is the ability to achieve the promised service reliably and correctly;
  • Assurance: The understanding and politeness of employees and their ability to communicate trust and confidence;
  • Tangibles: The look of physical facilities, equipment, employees and communication tools;
  • Empathy: This is the provision of care and personalised attention to customers;
  • Responsiveness: The readiness to support customers and to provide timely service.

From the questionnaire analysis, if customer expectations are higher than their perceptions of service received, service quality is viewed as low (not satisfactory) but if their perception is higher than their expectations, service quality is viewed as high (satisfactory). As indicated by Dr George Easaw in the Gap model shown below, a low service quality is a gap in the customer service quality process which directly has an impact on customer satisfaction levels. If a customer is not satisfied, it can affect their loyalty and retention which makes it a priority for organizations to identify such gaps using the Servqual tool and examining further to identify the root cause in order to improve the existing service quality processes. To investigate a gap in the service process, employ the use of the 5WHYs tool.

Service Gap Model

Source: Dr. George Easaw

Tool 2: 5WHYS

5WHYS

Source: Brandgenetics

5whys is an effective technique used in correcting and improving an existing process. It is used in the diagnosis of an issue or in this context, the gaps, as well as in identifying other issues that requires urgent attention. It is applied by simply asking the “WHY” question five or more times regarding a particular gap in the service quality processes. This can be compared to how kids learn and improve their speaking skills by probing literarily everything such as: Daddy, why is the dog barking? Why is mummy pampering the dog? They always ask the why questions out of curiosity and in the process of doing so; they acquire some vital knowledge and improve their communication skills. This is the same in a business environment. It is like peeling off the back of an orange till you get to the finer skin or peeling off a yam till you get to the inner skin. The following is an example of a scenario where the 5WHY was applied to determine the root cause of an issue:

Problem statement:

The customer is unhappy because his pamphlets were delivered late and it didn’t meet his program timing.

Outcome:

The customer pamphlet delivery arrived late. Why?

There was a shortage of printing ink. Why?

Spare ink had to be found. Why?

The ink was replaced but eventually the printer alerted the technician wrongly. Why?

It had not been crosschecked after replacement. Why?

Root cause

There is no machine checkup/maintenance schedule. Putting up a good checkup/maintenance schedule in place after every ink replacement will help ensure that printer will continue to work effectively and never disappoint due to ink replacement. This reduces delay and will help improve the process.

5whys is very easy to use and can be completed without the use of any statistical analysis. Here are four steps to follow when applying this tool in a service quality improvement process:

  • Write down the problem statement. Putting the issue in text will help you describe the issue clearly and help you validate it. It also keeps a team focus and put their eyes on the big picture which it to prevent it from recurring.
  • Question why the problem occurs and note down possible answers. This is mostly achieved through brainstorming.
  • Check the possible answers noted in step two with the problem statement in step one and if it doesn’t identify the root cause, ask the why question again and note down your possible answer.
  • Repeat step three until an understanding is reached and the issues root cause is identified. Have it in mind that the why questions might be asked fewer times or more than the 5whys before we achieve our aim.

After identifying the cause of the gap in service quality, the next step is to fill it by improving the existing processes, which leads us to the third tool known as the PDSA Cycle tool.

Tool 3: PDSA (Plan, Do, Study and Act)

The PDSA technique is known as the Deming Cycle or Deming wheel. Walter Shewhart, first introduced the model and application to Dr. Deming. The PDSA Cycle is a logical chain of steps used in gaining valued knowledge for the continual improvement (CSI) of a process or product. It can be used as a simple repetitive cycle to drive continuous quality improvement of any customer service processes (CSPs) as shown in the diagram below:

Deming Wheel

Source: The W. Edwards Deming Institute®

If a business want to stay competitive and successful, it needs to address the root cause of service quality issues and constantly drive improvement at the CSPs to avoid poor service delivery. As demonstrated by the diagram above, you need a plan on how to address any issue identified in service delivery, implement the plan (processes) by doing, study the new processes meant to improve the service in other to check if it is serving its purpose and act accordingly. This will help fill the gap initially identified and it will continuously ensure that customer’s perceptions of the services are higher than expectations.

Conclusively, the three techniques (SERVQUAL, 5WHYS & PDSA) are individual tools but if combined together by a professional in any service environment, one can continually achieve enhanced customer delivery processes that will then lead to customer satisfaction, loyalty and retention.

How have you been able to improve the customer service processes in your organization? Kindly share your suggestions in the comment section below or through your preferred social network. Thank you.