Welcome to the seventh edition of “In Touch.” As always, I would love to continue the conversation so please hit “reply” and let me know what you think.
Story of the Week: Mission Accomplished
I knew exactly what I had to do. I had been sent on a mission by my wife Christine and time was running out. As soon as I entered the supermarket I headed straight for the vegetable section where I needed to buy some zucchinis.
I quickly spotted them but, to my surprise, there were two varieties on display and, since my wife hadn’t specified, I didn’t know which one to choose. Without a second thought, I asked for help from the person responsible for the vegetable section.
In my experience, most customer service representatives (CSRs) tend to provide information on which is the cheaper or the more expensive of two options. At best, they might suggest — where fruit and vegetables are concerned — that one tastes better than the other. But this person’s response was so spot on that it could have been included in a seminar on customer service. It certainly served as the inspiration for this post. Our 11-second dialogue went like this:
Me: “I want some zucchinis but I’m not sure which sort to buy.”
CSR: “What will you be cooking?
CSR: “What kind of fish?”
Me: “Sea bass.”
CSR: “In that case, these are the ones to get. They’re sweeter and they’ll go better with that particular fish.”
Me: “Thank you very much!”
In sales, asking the right questions can make all the difference in the world. Questions are vital in helping you uncover a buyer’s precise needs and desires. They also help you connect with your customers and demonstrate your expertise.
Your ability to provide a customer with the best solution to their problem is the key to sales success.
Thanks to this particular customer service representative, when I arrived home, I was able to state with pride, “Mission accomplished, Christine!”
Words of Wisdom
The disappointed sales trainee:
The sales trainee was trying to explain his failure to close a single deal in his first week. “You know”, he said to his manager, “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”
“Make him drink?” the manager sputtered. “Make him drink? Your job is to make him thirsty.”
Origin Unknown / Source: Even more of the best bits and pieces by Rob Gilbert
A truly heartwarming gesture:
One family vacationing at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Bali, Indonesia had carried specialized eggs and milk for their son who suffered from food allergies. But upon arrival, the eggs had broken and the milk had spoiled. The Ritz-Carlton manager and staff explored the town but could not find any of the special items for the kid’s food. Luckily, the executive chef remembered a store in Singapore that sold them. He contacted his mother-in-law, had her purchase the items and fly to Bali to deliver them. The family and the boy were completely overjoyed and thankful to the staff who worked beyond their call of duty.
Source: 10 Heartwarming Stories or Remarkable Customer Service by Adel Zsurzsan
A Question to Ponder
What is the signature move that distinguishes your customer service from others?
Hit reply and let me know what you believe.
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Michael R. Virardi