Four aspects of your business need to be brought together in harmony to create a total customer service culture. These four aspects are: your Vision, your People, your Customer Service System, and proven Tools and Techniques for continuous improvement.
It is the unique selling points of your product or service that will win new customers and keep current ones loyal. So, it is vital that you put the delivery of these customer service attributes in your Vision. Not for the benefit of customers, but for the guidance of your team; to keep them focused on customer service, the key success factor of your business. If that is not obvious in your Vision, then now is the time for a review of your business vision and strategy! Check out Amazon’s commitment to the customer in their vision:
2. Engage your team to create a customer service culture. Without your people, there is no business. People have ideas and they know their jobs best. When you involve them in the process of changing your culture, to one of total customer service, you gain their commitment. Your role as business leader is to provide the Vision and the support to bring about improvement. Your people will need time, resources, and training to work together without functional or hierarchical barriers. One company that has a legendary customer service culture is Southwest Airlines. When you click on “Culture in Action” on their website, it directs you to a YouTube channel, “NutsAboutSouthwest” with many videos of their employees living the culture.
3. Take a systematic approach. Creating a customer service culture is an ongoing process. There is no end to it and you decide on the starting point. The stages in between are best achieved in a sequence. At PBC, we recommend ‘The IMPROVEment cycle.’ A step by step guide that follows the mnemonic: I Investigate the current situation, M Map the process and measure, P Prove causes and Pareto analysis, R Rethink the issue considering evidence, O Organize a test or simulation, V Verify that solutions and ideas improve the situation, and E Educate everyone and embed the solutions.
A Kano-based customer survey is a fundamental tool for your customer service team.