Wednesday, February 24, 2010

22 Tips to Recieving Good Customer Service

As someone who works a day job as a service agent in a very specialized field, I talk to lots of people everyday.

The majority of folks I speak with on a daily basis are polite, calm and rational and are willing to listen when I have advice, directions and/or suggestions to give them to resolve whatever problems they may be experiencing with our company's services and/or products.

However, a good 10% of the people I talk to each day are irrational, angry and/or downright crazy, and expect that I have some sort of magic wand I can wave that will solve their problems (which in most cases, they have brought upon upon themsleves by failing to follow the very clear directions provided to them on our website and in our printed materials). These people (mostly under the age of 30) have been raised with a sense of entitlement by parents who have done everything for them for most of their lives, and cannot handle "real life" when it rears its often ugly head. To them, this post is dedicated.

When calling a Customer Service Rep (no matter what company you are dealing with), there are some things you should know which will help facilitate your call and provide you with the maximum of service.

1. Know your account number. I cannot help you if I cannot access your account. The most efficient way for me to access your file is by giving me the proper account number.

2. Have a pen or pencil and a piece of paper at hand. Please don't waste my time (and yours) by not being prepared to write down the information/instructions I am about to impart to you. Please don't ask me for a fax or phone number unless you are prepared to write it down.

3. DO NOT SCREAM AND/OR SWEAR AT ME. This is probably the worst thing you can do when calling for help. I will always respond to someone who is polite and willing to listen. Calling me an "a**hole," "motherf***er" or any other derogatory name will do nothing to make me want to help you. I am paid to help you, not to be abused by you and I WILL hang up on you if you abuse me with foul language and name-calling, as I have been instructed to do so by my superiors.

4. Do NOT call me while driving or while in a location that is exceptionally noisy. I cannot help you if you are unable to take notes/instructions or if I cannot hear you because of loud background noise. Turn off your TV or radio; leave a room filled with screaming children or barking dogs; take cover from the howling wind and don't call me from a subway or train station in which high-speed transit vehicles may roar by.

5. Do NOT call me on a cell phone. Some of the information you need to give me to help you is very personal, and cell phones are hardly secure. Also, cell phone reception isn't always reliable, and your call may be dropped through no fault of mine.

6. Listen carefully to what I am saying. I cannot be responsible for any mistakes you make because you did not follow the instructions I gave you.

7. Allow me to speak. If you continually interrupt me, I cannot give you the information you need to resolve your problem.

8. Do not assume I know what someone else has told you. I cannot be responsible for misinformation or miscommunications you have received from another company rep, or what someone from outside our company may have told you. I can only tell you what I know about our company's policies and procedures.

9. DO NOT SCREAM AND/OR SWEAR AT ME. See item #3. Screaming or swearing will get you nowhere.

10. Please make sure you have read all of the instructions; policies; terms and conditions put forth on our website and in our printed materials. If you don't read our policies and don't follow our explicit instructions, it is not my fault that you are experiencing a problem.

11. Do not assume that your issue can be resolved immediately. Some problems you may be experiencing might take time to resolve. If I ask you to allow 3 to 5 Business Days, allow 3 to 5 Business Days. Don't call me an hour later and ask why you're still having a problem.

12. DO NOT SCREAM AND/OR SWEAR AT ME. I can't express this enough. I did not personally cause the issue which you might be experiencing, and I will NOT help you if you call me names.

13. Do not assume that I know who are. You may have called me three days ago, but I have spoken to hundreds of other people since then. Unless your particular case is extraordinary, I have no idea who you are.

14. Accept that sometimes the answer is "No." If I, or even my supervisor, cannot resolve your issue because of circumstances beyond our control. Please realize that not every issue is resolvable and move on.

15. DO NOT SCREAM AND/OR SWEAR AT ME. Get it? I won't help you, nor will anyone else, if you are an a**hole.

16. Don't DEMAND anything. This is akin to items 3, 12 and 15. Ask politely, and I will do everything within my power to help you.

17. Don't assume your problem is unique to you. I have already heard your question at least 10 times today. Let me answer your question without a song and dance.

18. I Don't need your life story. Be succinct and direct. Don't waste time with elaborate details which have no bearing on your problem. Trust me, I've heard your question or issue a thousand times or more.

19. DO NOT SCREAM AND/OR SWEAR AT ME. I don't think I can express this enough. Calm and Rational wins over Loud and Crazy every time.

20. Don't blame me for your wait time. I have no control over how many people are calling us at any given time, or how long an individual call may take. Some issues may be resolved in few seconds, while others may take several minutes. Be patient and know that all calls are handled in the order of receipt.

21. Don't lie to me. If you've made an error and you know it, own up to it. Don't gve me some elaborate and obviously fake story to cover your error. I can always tell, and I've heard every story you think I haven't.


More, anon.


Stephen said...

Why would I know my account number?

No, I don't have pen & paper. I am on my cell phone riding a bus, you shithead!

I can't hear you Prospero, you asshole. I told you I am on a bus!

You CUNT... Stephen R told me I didn't need to do that!

GODDAMNIT...don't you remember me fromlast time? I Threw away the instructions & I won't take NO for an answer.

All right prickface... you better sit down because I am gonna start at the beginning. I was born in Necktwist PA...

don't you put me on hold you asswipe... I've never dome anything like this before...

Make my day, fudgepacking basll licking shit!!!

There, does that help? I am looking forard to Customer Service-The Musical.

Prospero said...

You, sir, are very unwell. Which is why i love you!