Wood Foss, a proprietor in Westerly RI, owns Alley Katz, a wonderful 20 lane center that does some great numbers and has really, really great sports bar called Cleats. In addition to the great service, the burgers, specials and other concoctions are terrific. I can’t wait for my visit to see them; the burgers are that good! 🙂
In any case, Wood is a fervent reader of Chris Brogan’s blog and he passed this information on to me. I thought you might like it
“I’m convinced that everyone in every organization is now part of the sales force. I also think you’re part of customer service, but there are no customers without sales. Sales comes first. No matter if you’re the “bagger” at the grocery store to the CFO, your job is sales and then customer service, and if you don’t think it is, your company’s health is probably just as questionable as the rest of the businesses out there.
Sales people don’t push a product; they listen for people’s needs. The really good sales professionals I’ve met sell other people’s products just as readily as they sell the one they’re paid to sell. Get in that habit, the habit of being helpful. Find people’s needs as a matter of fact. Find them even when you’re not really on duty. Listen to people. Listen to what they’re really saying versus what is coming out of their lips. This will pay you forever.
Think Customer Service
The #1 trait of excellent customer service is empathy married to action. Sometimes, empathy is all you can deliver. I’m sitting in an airport writing this at 5AM because our plane was rerouted due to an emergency on board. It’s no one’s fault. But none of the passengers really want to be here. Everyone has dealt with us with empathy first and foremost, and that’s what matters. They’ve spoken from our side of the fence. They’ve been personal with all their interactions.
Empathy plus action is what makes great customer service. You can practice this as often as possible, too. You can do it at home. Get on the other person’s side of the table as often as possible. Look for potential ways to help. And remember, listening and making someone feel heard is every bit as important an action as any other (note to men: we tend to leap to action instead of helping a woman feel heard – that’s from studies I’ve read and John Gray’s work)”.
My best to all, Wood