The Art of Giving Great Service

We all know great customer service is important in retail and food service, but what many don’t realize is that it is essential in any type of business or organization.

At our Zingtrain workshop in November (learn more about it here) we had a variety of attendees in the room representing a library, chocolate shop, church, trucking company, museum, realtor, school district, and much more.

The first half of the training was on visioning and the second half was called “The Art of Giving Great Service.” Although many of the attendees might not consider themselves part of the service industry, how you treat your employees, co-workers, partners, members, donors, vendors and really anyone who walks through your door, is just as important as how you treat the people you call “customers.”

Zingtrain started by having us brainstorm what “great service” looks like and words such as relaxed, connection, satisfaction, familiarity, synergy, belonging, and memorable were brought up. People enjoy visiting places that make them feel comfortable and accepted, no matter if that’s a place to grab a bite to eat or to check out a library book.

Then, Zingtrain laid out what they define as the three steps to great service:

  1. Figure out what the customer wants: Ask questions, listen, and pay attention to their tone of voice and body language. Also, follow the 10/4 Rule which says when a customer comes within 10 feet of you, make eye contact and smile. Within 4 feet, greet the customer. The 10/4 Rule applies even when on the phone with a different customer, and it applies not only to external customers but to internal customers and co-workers as well.
  2. Get it for them: Get it for them accurately, politely, and enthusiastically. They suggest being “genuinely enthusiastic” in a way that is true to the customer, and it can end up raising your own energy, too.
  3. Go the extra mile: Do something extra that they don’t expect or ask for, like giving a sample, providing extra information, following up on something, or sending a hand-written thank you note.

Also covered were tips for effective telephone service, how to handle customer complaints, documenting positive and negative interactions, and rewarding others in your organization (you can find more Zingtrain customer service resources here).

While we’re excited to have attendees take what they learned back to their separate businesses and organizations, we’re even more excited for the effect this could have on our whole community. Think about the impact that could be made if every place you visited in Venango County made you feel welcomed and positive?

The more we work within our own organizations, the more we can work together as a community to make this a place where people truly want to “be here.”