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Adapting to seemingly ever-changing client whims is no different from adapting to life challenges in general. Successful business owners accept inevitable changes—they quickly adapt and, when necessary, re-evaluate their brand, product, service, strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities. Adjustments are a fact of life and a certainty in business.
Sharing a few thoughts:
– Know your industry better that anyone. It’s up to you to manage customers’ expectations. In other words, it’s your job to showcase the company’s value proposition and to make it so memorable that consumers will know exactly what your business offers and how it is different from the competition. In the busy online and brick-and-mortar marketplace, make sure your business has a trait that is worth remembering, pursuing, and buying.
– Passionately pursue your ideal customer. When was the last time you investigated your demographic to determine whether it has (hasn’t) changed. Few things are worse than marketing to the wrong demographic and wondering why sales revenue is not on pace to meet goal. Abercrombie & Fitch’s former CEO, Mike Jeffries, identified the company’s ideal customer as “cool, good-looking people” and refused to market to anyone outside of that demographic. Some considered this approach as ostracizing non-customers, others said the tactic was spot on. Either way, be prepared to defend your motives of customer/demographic identification.
– Look at your marketing, and advertising from the consumer’s perspective and identify gaps that need to be repaired/filled. Would YOU buy your company’s product? Do your company’s mission, vision, and core values emanate through your staff? product? service? management? vendors? If not, run to the draft board and get busy re-developing strategies and motives.
– Break down large customer service projects into smaller units of work. Train selected staff to perform that small unit of work and assign other team members to create methodologies to proactively solve customer challenges.
I have a colleague who flies helicopters. He said that in flight school, he had to learn how to operate many (seemingly countless) gauges. Although all of the gauges are not used to make the helicopter fly, knowing which ones to operate during a storm is life-saving.
I believe that customer care, customer service, client/guest services, troubleshooter, help desk, help line…whatever title fits your industry…is the lifeblood of any organization. If team members don’t understand client problems/issues and how to solve intricate problems at exceptional levels, other challenges will surface…it’s called customer attrition…and I think we all know where that can lead.
Your company goals will become a reality faster with less stress when they align with understanding the value of customer service.
Have a great day and remain exceptional !