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Listen For The Whole Story

It’s often counterproductive to respond to customers before they have finished speaking. Even if you think you know how to help, you may not have gotten the whole story, says Stephen Boyd, author of Emphatic Listening. To get the whole story, he suggests these five tips: • Talk less and listen more. • Encourage the…Continue reading


Tell Customers What You Are Doing

When there is silence on a service call, customers tend to get concerned: Are you still there?What are you doing? Will you return to the call? To keep the customer from worrying, explainwhat you are doing throughout the contact. For example, you might say: “I’m waiting for your order to process, and then I can…Continue reading


How To Handle Exceptions

"It’s important to be consistent with customers," says author Naomi Karten. "Once a customer’s expectation is set through an experience, that forms their new service expectation until it’s shifted again."So, for example, if a customer comes to a frontline rep with a request that your organization typically would not meet or provide, and in the…Continue reading


What Do Customers Really Want?

You may not be able to give customers everything they want, but meeting their "human expectations" will help you keep customers happy, satisfied, and loyal. "Customer expectations shift constantly, and they shift easily," says Naomi Karten, author of Managing Customer Expectations. "And just because you know what they are today, doesn’t mean you necessarily know…Continue reading


Replying To Customer Email

When frontline reps answer customer email or chat, they can build rapport with the same type of mirroring they use on the phone. "For example," says Marvin Sadovsky, a leadership consultant, “if the customer’s email is brief and to the point, that’s what they will respond to most positively in a response. If they send…Continue reading


Increase Your Comfort At Work

Now that you’ve moved back to the office, do you find yourself arriving home with a stiff neck and an aching back? In some cases, a few simple changes in your work habits can help you feel more comfortable. For example: If you use a single monitor, position it directly in front of you and…Continue reading


Projecting Confidence Over The Phone

During the first few moments of each call, reps must demonstrate that they are knowledgeable, competent, and confident.But that can be difficult to do in just a few moments. Voice trainer Jay Miller. recommends the following techniques:Use a big voice. If you speak too softly, the perception can be that you lack confidence. On the…Continue reading


Handle Household Noise Like A Pro

With more and more reps working from home, the possibility of unexpected background noise is real -- Think dogs barking, babies crying, smoke alarms blaring, and more. Craig Idlebrook, content manager for ICMI, calls on reps to use these awkward moments to humanize the service experience. After speaking with a rep who ignored the noise…Continue reading


Speed Up Calls With Chatty Customers

Occasionally, everyone has to deal with the delicate situation of disengaging from a chatty customer who simply doesn’t want to hang up. “We’re in the habit of waiting for permission to terminate a conversation,” says Richard Gallagher of Skills Development International. However, “there are some people who will never give you that permission.” To get…Continue reading


Watch Your Language To Reduce Stress

If the language you and your coworkers use to talk about customers and your work is predominantly negative you’re probably contributing to your overall stress levels as a result. What can you do about it? JoAnna Brandi of JoAnna Brandi & Company offers this solution: Spend a week paying close attention to the language that…Continue reading