Companies often put emphasis on creating a great customer experience. From customer journey mapping to trying to deliver the best service, companies put a lot of work into making sure their customers are happy. But a recent article by Mareli Smit asks the questions, “Don’t we also need to place some form of responsibility on the customers? Should it all be on the business and employees of businesses alone?”
While the employees’ goal should always be to deliver good service, it does not mean employees should have to take abuse or rudeness from customers. Smit says that employers should focus on training employees to protect themselves from customer abuse. Smit uses an example of a hotel that calls their staff members ladies and gentlemen that serve ladies and gentlemen. This encourages them to treat others with respect and as a result, be treated with respect. Customer service employees may be poor in some companies, but ultimately, these employees do not deserve to be on the bad end of your venting process and treated as a punching bag.
Smit gives the following three ways to turn negative customer experiences into positive ones:
1) Employers: Empower employees to treat customers with respect and also demand respect from customers in return. It shouldn’t be “the customer is always right” as the number one law. When an employer makes their employee feel like they’re the number one priority, the employee will then be happier at work and ultimately put the customers first.
2) Employees: If a customer is screaming at you, it means they’ve lost control and may not be screaming at you specifically, but the situation itself. The best way to handle this situation is to listen to their problems and try to solve them while remaining calm and kind. It’s certainly a challenge, but it is the best way to turn the negative experience around.
3) Customers: Calm down and demand good service in a respectful manner. If you’re not thinking rationally and only throwing a temper tantrum, your behavior will get you nowhere and you could end up making the situation much worse than you thought it was already.
If companies and consumers demand to have high-quality service, then it really does require a team effort from everyone involved. The employer needs to empower the employee and make them feel like a priority and the employee must then treat the customer as their number one priority. In return, the customer must treat the employee with respect as a working human being and not as their punching bag to vent their personal frustrations. When a customer is throwing a fit and making a scene, it negatively affects everyone around them. But Smit’s three ways given in her article to turn negative experiences into positive ones can certainly provide a basic template to reducing these experiences and creating a better environment.
This blog post was based on an article from CustomerThink. To read the original article, please click the link below:
The Customer Experience ripple effect – Mareli Smit
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