When Eli, a twenty-something lively man from New York with Walnut-colored skin and tinted glasses entered my dad’s hospital room, he changed the atmosphere.
Eli responded to my dad’s many requests and needs with patience, a sense of enthusiastic urgency, and something that I can only describe as love. Eli serves my dad like he’s a son, not a nurse technician. I caught myself staring at the interaction between my dad and Eli with my mouth hung open.
Over the last fortnight, I’ve watched Eli and Kodjovi from Togo, Africa, and Kimberly from Texas, all nurse technicians, serve my dad with personal connection and enthusiasm. This team is surprising and delighting me with one of the best customer experiences I’ve ever had.
My two biggest takeaways from this team of fantastic nurse technicians are Be Intentional and Put Customers Over Tasks.
Want to set yourself up for success each time you interact with a customer?
In my newest training course for LinkedIn Learning, I help customer service reps establish a genuine, human connection. I share simple techniques that can help you kick off a conversation in a way that makes your customers feel respected, listened to, and at ease.
Join me and learn how to keep the conversation flowing by yielding to customers and pacing their words and expressions. Plus, discover techniques that can help you build rapport in specific situations, including chat interactions, emails, and circumstances in which you need to deliver bad news.
Sample the introduction to this course below, and then take the full course on LinkedIn Learning
Take my newest training on LinkedIn Learning or Lynda.com now.
This week has been dedicated to customized customer service eLearning for some of my favorite clients. Well, all of my clients are my “favorite.”
People often ask me how we put together our tailored online training for clients. So, I decided to take you behind the scenes. Read on to see how we create custom video training. Continue reading “Behind the Scenes with Our Customer Service eLearning”
I do an exercise in my workshops using a pole. I tell participants to lower the pole to the ground. I give them two rules: The pole can’t lose contact with their index fingers, and they can’t use gravity to pull the pole.
This exercise is hard. Everybody’s focused just on their small section of the pole.
But, they figure out that to lower the pole, they must focus on everybody, not just their section.
This activity helps improve internal customer service. Just like with the pole, a good internal customer experience requires people to focus beyond their own tasks. You have to think broader.
When everyone focuses on the bigger picture, the result is an extraordinary external customer experience.
Here are three keys that will help improve your internal customer relations, which enables you to deliver a better external customer experience. Continue reading “The 3 Fundamentals Everyone Always Forget with Internal Customer Service”
I haven’t stepped into a Starbucks since two African American men in Philadelphia were arrested for merely being black in Starbucks back in April. But Starbucks isn’t the only company with issues with insensitivity. Consider three of my recent experiences with companies.
It’s Not Okay to Crop My Afro In Your Corporate Images
Minutes before a workshop, I was seated stage-right as my client gave me an impressive introduction to the audience. As part of the opening, a slide with portraits of all of the conference speakers was featured on the big screen. There were five of us, and I was the only African American.
I do not attempt to tame my hair with chemicals or heat. Unapologetically I wear my hair big and out.
The slide with the conference speakers showed headshots of each speaker. My headshot was positioned so that at least two inches of my Afro was chopped off. The portrait was odd and unflattering. Continue reading “That Time My Client Cropped My Afro In My Headshot, And Why This Is Not Okay.”
One of the goals for my customer service training in Cerritos, California yesterday was to help employees follow-up with colleagues, to close the loop so that everybody was up to date on what’s being done to fix issues for customers.
I designed a short lecture and a small group discussion to address this. And then, three hours before my flight, I scratched the entire section.
A brilliant trainer of trainers once cautioned me, “Don’t do for participants what they can do for themselves.” Recalling her advice, I thought, I won’t tell them to communicate better, I’ll put them in a situation that forces them to see why not communicating is making their jobs so much harder.
Here’s what I did. I stood in front of the class and pulled out at 12-foot pole. And I told my group of 12 people that their task was to lower the stick to the floor. It sounds simple. Incredulous, the people merely stared at me, mute.
I divided the class up into two groups and explained the rules. You’ll start with the pole waist high, you cannot lose contact with the pole at any time, and only gravity can move the pole (that is, the pole couldn’t be pushed or pulled down).
After my instruction, I stepped back and watched (and took out my iPhone to film). Within seconds, the group learned that this exercise was anything but simple. (See video clip below from the training.) Continue reading “You Didn’t Know a 12-foot Pole Could Teach You This”