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Customer Service

Customer Service

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Customer Service

Unit standard: 18223 Level: 3 Credit: 4 Title: Provide customer service in the tourism and travel industry

18223 1 Assessment (project) 1 Role Play covering elements 1-4

Principles for delivering good customer service

1. Appear friendly. Even if you are

having a bad day, no need to take it out on your customer!

2. Go the extra mile.
If you are helping a customer

and seem to run into a dead end, try to go the extra mile. Call another wholesaler for a service they are seeking. Carry their brochures out to their car (or arrange for someone to do this for them). Have a magnifying glass ready for small print

3. Pay attention to the customer.

 Make sure to give the customer your

full attention when you are assisting them.

4. Make eye contact.

When you are dealing with a

customer, be sure to make eye contact with them.

 

5. Give notice to other patrons that you will be right with them.


6. Keep brochures stocked up.

7. Be courteous.

Imagine every one of

us has an invisible sign around our neck that says “Make me feel important”

8. Tell them what you can do.


Clarity of speech Appropriate language Questioning skills Listening skills Positive body language Meeting and exceeding

customer expectations Product knowledge

Because we all expect good service!

A dissatisfied customer will tell 10 people 13% of that 10 will tell 20 people Happy customers tell 3-5 people

Only 4% of customers

complain This means we may not hear from 96% 91% of those just go away because they believe that complaining will will no them any good.
 
Complainer are more

likely to do business with you again, assuming you acted on

Even without the customers................. if bad service is given this can relate back to the staff in other ways

So what are the benefits of good customer service?
More satisfied customers So Why do Satisfied Customers Defect?.

REPEAT CUSTOMERS Satisfied customers become loyal repeat clients who feel you are taking the extra service step in order to exceed their expectations.

New customers through word of mouth advertising
 Creating positive personal

recommendations will generate new visitor and business growth which quickly translates into bottom line profits. Word of mouth is potentially the most important business-builder in the tourist industry


It costs five times as much to win a new

customer as it does to keep and existing one.

Good or bad attitude?

Personal factors that influence customer service
Motivation: You need to show

that you are motivated so that your clients recognise that you really want to help them

Motivation, in and of itself, is little more than a feeling, an urge to move ahead.

Showing interest allows the client to know

that you are going that extra mile. That you are genuinely interested in them as people and not just making your agency money

continuous product and service improvement, cost

control and accountability,productivity and responsiveness, and an emphasis on customer satisfaction.

Customers know that it is getting hard to

trust any airline or travel agents to deliver long-term customer service Some of the customer’s past experiences would have seen them treated with complete disregard - like sheep. And if they have done any waiting on the phone in order to speak to you,  then they will be doubly annoyed at what they perceive to be a waste of their time.

Wow is king !
 Having spent money to gain

the customer in the first place, it makes sense to treat them well in every respect so they come back.  An example: " Let's try book that new agency in the bay!?" "Mary said that she and Bill booked a flight last week and the service was great!"  All customers have a sphere of influence. Friends, family & neighbours.  Research shows us that customers who have a good experience dealing with a company or a brand will tell people within their circle of friends (their

Word bank

 Employee competence  the capacity of employees

to act in a wide variety of situations  Internal structure  everything that does not leave at night: models, concepts, computer and administrative systems, the "culture" or "spirit" of the organisation.  External structure  relationships with customers and suppliers, networks, brand names and reputation or "image".

Wow –word of mouth
Form of influence  To receive a brand recommendation from one friend to another is a very powerful form of influence. The trust from the friendship overlays onto the recommended product and new product barriers are overcome.  WOM (Word of mouth) is the most valuable form of advertising/marketing you can ever have.   However, there is a huge downside to this form of advertising.  Because, if they have a bad customer experience with our company,  they also tell other people but this time they tell more.  FACT:  People talk more about their negative experiences than their good ones

Rule of Thumb: Stats show that a happy

customer will tell 10 other people of their satisfaction. An unhappy customer will tell 20. Furthermore, it's nine times more expensive to get a new customer than it is to sell to an existing customer. And you know as well as I do that customers vote with their feet!

 The Welcome


A standard

This can be anything from good morning  / afternoon or welcome.  Just using "Welcome to..." means that you won't get the time of day of wrong!!   It is also warmer as you are welcoming the caller into the company...

professional call opening should contain the following elements:

 The name of your

 


company / division This should be clear and concise - NOT too long!  For example: "Welcome to Polytechnic Travel and sales, customer service office..."  Informative, BUT just a little too long... how about: "Welcome to Polytech travel"  - short, sharp and concise Your callers should know who they are talking to,  

 Your name

reasons why organisations lose their customers; some of them are obvious while some of them may be less obvious

 1. Customer was


do you think are the percentages of each reason why  organisations lose customers?

turned away by the indifferent attitude of a company employee  2. Customer was dissatisfied with the product  3. Customer was lured away by competition  4. Customer was influenced by a friend to go  5. Customer moves away

Meeting the customer's needs
For us to offer excellence in

customer service we first have to understand what the customers actually want or expect from us. How do we do that?    By Listening! By learning how to listen actively a lot of information can be gained from the customers.


Experts say that about two-

thirds of everything you learn, you learn through listening. Yet, very few people are good listeners. "The average person remembers only about 25 percent of what he or she hears, and some people remember as little as 10 percent. The problem is that while hearing is incredibly easy, listening takes a real effort."

What affects listening?
What do you think of the subject

matter? Is it new or have you a lot of experience with it? Will it be difficult to understand, or simple? Is it important to you, or just fun? Is the speaker experienced or nervous? What are the  non-verbal cues of the speaker? What frame of mind is he or she? How personable, threatening, intelligent, etc.?

Prepare with a positive, engaged attitude

Focus your

attention on the subject Stop all nonrelevant activities beforehand to orient yourself to the speaker or the topic

Review mentally what you already know about the subject
Organize in advance relevant material in

order to develop it further (previous familes, TV programs, newspaper articles, web sites, prior real life experience, etc.)

Avoid distractions

qSeat yourself appropriately close to the speaker Avoid distractions (a window, a talkative neighbour, noise, etc.)

Acknowledge any emotional state
Suspend emotions until later, or

Passively participate unless you can control your emotions Set aside your prejudices, your opinions You are present to learn what the speaker has to say, not the other way around

Lets recap on actively listening:
 Be other-directed; focus on the person

communicating Follow and understand the speaker as if you were walking in their shoes Listen with your ears but also with your eyes and other senses  Be aware: non-verbally acknowledge points in the speech
 Be involved:

Actively respond to questions and directions Use your body position (e.g. lean forward) and attention to encourage the speaker and signal your interest

Follow up activities

O n e - to - o n e

In a g ro u p / a u d ie n ce
Give the speaker space to regroup, to debrief after talkingDuring Q & A If posing a question Quickly express appreciation Briefly summarize a preliminary point Ask the relevant question If making a point Quickly express appreciation Briefly restate the relevant idea as presented State your idea, interpretation, reflection Invite a response Continued development Get contact information for later reference Invite friends/colleagues/etc. for discussion afterward Write out a summary with questions for further review

             

 

    

Give the speaker time and space for rest after talkingExpress appreciation for the sharing to build trust and encourage dialogue Check if you have understood Restate key points to affirm your understanding & build dialogue Summarize key points to affirm your understanding & build dialogue Ask (non-threatening) questions to build understanding Continue dialogue: Reflect on your experience to demonstrate your interest (feedback) Interpret after you feel you have grasped content Apply what you have learned to a new situation

So why should we do it?   What difference does it make to us if we offer good service or not? 
Job security Better environment Personal satisfaction Increased business from customers Recognition from management Bonuses or incentives

What will the signs that will tell you are on the track and offering the service people want?
Compliments from customers Happier customers Reduced stress Customers ask for you Repeat business New customers by referral 

By offering the best possible service it

means the customers have an enjoyable and easy experience which will probably make them want to come back again, not to mention telling other people.

Four Levels of Business
There are four stages we all go through

as a customer.  Some of the stages we may not reach depending on how we are treated by the companies we are dealing with. 

 Advocate - An existing customer who openly

recommends      you as a business partner.    The advocate approach is the     basis for many loyalty programmes or 'friend get friend' programmes.  We are generally advocates every day.  We tell people about a great movie we saw, a fantastic sale that is on, a good book or restaurant.  The power of word of mouth is very successful because it is built on trust.  Research has shown for many years that we are more likely to believe someone we know than advertising.  How many of your customers are advocates or raving fans 

Communication is a basic life skill.
People are being constantly presented  with

situations  where effective communication skills are needed. Relationships, both personal or those with your co-workers  will affect how each person chooses to behave and communicate.

Styles of communication are learned

behaviours that can be grouped into the categories of assertiveness, aggressiveness, and passiveness.

Ideally, everyone should aim to

communicate in an assertive manner,  allowing thoughts and ideas to be conveyed in a clear, thoughtful way.  We can only accept responsibility for our own communication behaviours. Change is NOT easy though and this unit standard is aimed at giving you information to help you become more assertive.  

It's not what you say -  but the way that you say it!
Well how many times have you heard that

said?   Right through your childhood if you were like most kids. Well guess what? Nothing has changed! As a Customer Service Professional, you are completely reliant on your voice.  You will learn in this module,  it is thetone of your voice that is your major communication tool.  

Key point:
 It is quite common to have two behavioural

styles depending  on the circumstances we are in.  For example, we may act differently  when relaxed compared to being at work.  Customers also can be very different and can communicate in different ways.   So, first of all we need to gain some sort of understanding of the particular types of behaviours and communication styles.   This knowledge will aid in understanding the  types of responses and skills that are required in effectively dealing with them. 

You need to be aware that your behavioural

style can affect how you communicate with the customer. Our behavioural styles are also likely to differ depending on the circumstances we are in. For example, we may act differently when relaxed compared to being at work or in a social setting.

When dealing with customers we need to be assertive. 

As customers we are looking for assistance,

advice and guidance from the people we are dealing with.  This must be communicated in a positive and assertive manner so that customers build faith in the people they are dealing with.

Different Communication Requirements

Depending on whether we are face to face

or on the telephone with someone will determine how our messages are being transferred.  Once we understand this we then know where to put our focus and attention to ensure the message gets across.

Over the telephone we lose the aspect of

'seeing' the other person,  therefore what we have to rely on is how they sound.  It is amazing how much information can be picked up just from someone's tone of voice!   

Key Points:
Over the telephone, the majority of your

message will be communicated via your voice, So you need to: Listen actively Ask Open and Closed Questions Employ a sense of humour Be aware of the tone you are using

Passive Behaviour  Styles
 When people allow their ideas or rights to

be restricted by another individual or situation, they are behaving passively.   Actions that indicate passive behaviour are:  Use excessive professional courtesy.  Use ambiguous statements and beat around the bush.  Express concerns in the form of a question, rather than making a statement.  Avoid conflict.  Refrain from challenging questionable procedures used by another team member.  Are labelled as, “along for the ride”.

W o rd b a n k A m b i u o u s: g va g u e , u n cl a r e

Passive Communication
 Make long rambling statements

(often justifying themselves)  Avoid making “I” statements or qualify them, e.g.
 It’s only my     opinion but…. 

 Use phrases that make it
 It’s not important really  It doesn’t matter  I only meant…  Never mind…. 

easier for others to ignore their needs or wants, e.g.

 Use other qualifying words,

     

Maybe… Would you mind very much? I wonder if… Just…. Sorry to bother you but…. If it's OK with you....

 Passive words include

qualifiers such as

 Passive communicators use “filler”

words, e.g.           
    

 Uh…You know…., Sort of…, I mean… Put themselves down, e.g.       I seem to be hopeless at this… I can’t… I keep trying but…. 

 "maybe”  “I guess”  “would you mind if”  “only”  “just”  “I can't”  “if that's what you want."

Problems with Passive Behaviour: 
These people tend to keep their feelings

inside. Their emotions, such as fear, anxiety, depression, fatigue and nervousness may build to unsafe levels and cause internal conflict which can eventually lead to health problems 

So what does this mean for the customer?
From a customers point of view this

behaviour can be very frustrating.  A customer wants and needs to know the person they are dealing with is in charge of the situation and assisting them to the outcome they require.

Indirect or Passive Aggressive Behaviour:
The purpose of passive-aggressive

behaviour is to express anger without having to be responsible for that anger, so anger can be denied.    This type of communication is frustrating for people who have to deal with it because the person using it is not willing to actually deal with whatever is bothering them, but would prefer to play guerrilla-warfare by 'pecking at others' in oblique ways. 

 ‘why would you think I would be angry at being

taken for a ride?"  "no, no, there's no problem" (when clearly there is)  These people use what is termed as "below the radar "behaviour.   This means that they are manipulative in their dealings and make others around them begin to question their own abilities. W o rd B a n k  Passive-aggressive behaviour is the term o u s: M a l ciused i n a sty to describe  I te n t: a i n m behaviour that is passive in expression but is 

Actions that indicate passive aggressive behaviour are:
 Never dealing with issues head 

 

  

on but always complaining about them Having snipes at other people behind their back when they are supposed to be friends. Denying issues if directly confronted with them. Blaming others around them for their mistakes and believing it is their fault Passive Aggressive Communication Putting down people around them Avoids taking personal responsibility for things and blames others

 Fails to come out and say /

ask what they want

 Well I wouldn't have…  I didn't say that...  I wonder if…  Is it just me or….  If you are sure you don't


 Use phrases that make it

easier for others to ignore their needs or wants, e.g.      

 It’s not important really  It doesn’t matter  I only meant…  Never mind….

These people will:

Try to undermine us and catch us out.  We need to be direct and honest with

these people

Problems With Aggressive Behaviour Inappropriate anger, rage or misplaced hostility expresses aggressive responses. this behaviour restricts communication

within the team. trust is non existent as people around them feel they will get the blame if something goes wrong.     

These people need to be calmed down.
In essence, you can overcome the difficulties

by empathising,  repeating the problem back to the person, showing you understand how they feel rather than just telling them you do and try to agree on a solution to the problem.

So what does this mean for the customer?


Nobody likes to be talked down to, bullied or

even made to feel like they have been threatened.  This is no way to try and conduct business as it is a sure fire way of pushing customers to the competition.

Problems with Assertive Behaviour


Assertive people feel empowered to speak

up and do it with respect. The team leader, supervisor or manager must be able to harness the energy of assertive team members. They may stand out from the others as being thought of as out spoken or direct.

So what does this mean for the customer?
The ability to be assertive means you sound

confident, you take control of the situation and you guide others to a solution or an outcome that is suitable.

Customers will be more relaxed and happy

knowing they are dealing with a professional and someone who will take care of their needs with little effort on their part.

Did you know?
We can think four times faster than we

can talk?

  This is the reason that 'listening' is a

hard skill to master

What customers want: 
 Clients want a chance to get their own ideas and

opinions across first.   Remember they call/come to see you because they have something to ask or something to say.   A consultant who is a good listener lets them do it.  Wait until they finish talking before you speak. If you let them do that upfront, the rest of the call will go easier.  Try and listen "between the lines" - in this case 'between the words'.     Listen for sighs, exasperated intakes of breath.   A raised voice is a sign of someone who feels as if they have been given the run around.  Concentrate on what is not being said as well as what is being said and the way it is said. 

3 Great Opening Steps  to Manage and Calm  an Upset Customer:
This model uses every requirement a

customer is looking for: SORRY -  acknowledgement / empathy ownership GLAD  -  acceptance / willingness to help SURE   -  action plan / solution

What they want
 Upset customers may want a variety 

of responses from you:  to be taken seriously  to be treated with respect  to get immediate action  to gain compensation/restitution  to have the party who wronged them reprimanded and/or punished  to clear up the problem so it never happens again  to be listened to  Expressions of empathy such as, "I can see why that would make you feel that way" are phrases to show that we care.   

How they might react!
How these customers react when they reach

you will depend on a number of things: Are you the first person they have spoken to? How serious is the issue? How many times have they had to repeat their story? Is this the first time they have complained about this issue? How long have they been kept waiting?

Successful agents manage to find out

what customers want, expect and need.  They go out of their way to do this by asking questions and really listening to the answers.

it-All  and Rude customers!
Here we look at 4 types of aggressive clients

and strategies to either end or take control of the call/or the person in front of you!

Angry client-Don’t react to emotion, react to information 

Step Five:  Apologise Example: “I apologise for the inconvenience this has caused”  Step Six:  Paraphrase  Example: “So if I understand…” “May I confirm…”
  

 Step One:  Be Calm  Example: control your   

  

  

breathing, try standing up Step Two: Empathise Example: “I can see why that would be frustrating; if that happened to me I would be angry too.” Step Three: Get the customer details Example: “In order to help you, may I ask you some questions?” Step Four: Let them know you are listening Example: “uh huh” “mmm”

 Step Seven:  Propose action plan  Example: “What I can do…; What I

can suggest…”

 Step Eight:   Follow Through  Example:Do what you say you are

going to do!

The know it all client
 Step One:  Acknowledge their

knowledge this for you”, “Let me  Example: “as you would check” be aware”, “as you  Step Five: would appreciate” “as  Make sure you know your you would understand” products/services  Step Two:  Example:Find out where information is stored/use  Ask open/probing market research questions  Step Six:  Example: “Tell me more  Make sure you have the about…” delegated authority  Example: Check this out with  Step Three: your manager  Be firm but polite   Example: “In order to help you, I need to

 Step Four:  Be honest  Example: “Let me confirm

Dealing with the non-stop talking customer

This customer telephones with a query and

then wants to talk about everything else.   You may have been the first person they have spoken with all week. They can frustrate you and they prevent other clients from getting through

with       a language barrier
Until they become completely fluent in

English, people who speak English as a second language normally go through the following process: they hear what you say in English they translate what you’ve said into their language they construct their answer in their first language they reply to you in English

Remember raising your voice does not act as a translator!!  “Be patient with these people”

Handling Verbal Complaints The steps are:

a) identify yourself, listen, record details and determine what the client wants;  b) confirm the details received;  c) acknowledge the client’s feelings and empathise with the client in a courteous manner;  d) explain the courses of action available, i.e. that the complaint will be sent to the appropriate person for immediate attention e) do not attempt to lay blame or alternatively do not be too defensive at this stage;  f) ensure that the client is informed that the complaint is receiving attention and the likely response time for the client to receive an update on the progress of the complaint;  g) set a timetable and take action to gain a resolution within the timetable;  h) report the complaint to the appropriate business department

Acknowledge feelings
Acknowledge the person's feelings and

apologize for the inconvenience the customer has encountered. Make an effort to be sincere. In today's impersonal society, it's incredibly rare to hear the words "I'm sorry that happened. Let me get the ball rolling to fix it." You'll probably spend about 80 percent of your time massaging the caller's feelings and 20 percent actually solving the problem.

Sympathize and empathize with the caller.
 Phrases like, "I can understand why you're

upset," help soothe ruffled feathers. Pretend it is you calling. Then get busy solving the problem.

Accept 100 percent responsibility for the call
.This is probably the toughest part. Chances are you had nothing to do with the

problem. However, it is your job to accept responsibility and initiate work on a solution.

Prepare to help
 Begin by reintroducing yourself – callers

don't usually remember your name. State that you will be able to help.  Use the caller's name, if possible, which helps diffuse the anger.  A willing attitude is essential because if the caller senses insincerity or indifference, he will stay angry.  It's exasperating to file a complaint with someone who obviously doesn't care.

a.Annual revenue $10,000.00 b.Total number of customers 2500.00 c.% of dissatisfied customers x 0.25 d.Number of dissatisfied customers = 625 e.% of dissatisfied likely to switch = 0.70 f. No. of customers who will switch = 437.5

Lost Opportunity Revenue
i. Number of other people dissatisfied  customers tell (437.5 x 10) 4375 J. Number of potential customers  who buy elsewhere due to negative  word of mouth (assume one in 50 tell,  therefore 1 x.02) 87.5 k. Potential lost revenue (JXG) $(350,000)

Customer replacement cost
l. Customer acquisition costs  (66% of A) $6,600,000 m.Average cost per customer $2640 n.Replacement cost of lost customers $(13200)

Total Costs
o.Total annual cost (H+K+N) $(2,113,200)

o.Total cost over customer's lifetime of doing business for 10 years (o x 10)  $(21,132,000)

As you can see from this frightening

example, our hypothetical company will lose more than $2million a year due to poor customer service and customer retention.

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