ArLyne's Diamonds

A running commentary of ideas

Friday, December 11, 2015

What a difference friendliness, competence and good customer service makes

I recall when I had surgery on my right leg.  From the moment I walked into the surgery center I felt well cared for.  The nursing and nursing support staff at El Camino Hospital were caring, competent, friendly and never once used that condescending “nursey” tone of voice.  They were real people and they treated me like a real person.

Contrast that if you will to the hours and hours and hours of talking to IT people trying to get my computer up and running properly.  Here we were besieged with techie-types who always had a quick answer blaming the problem on something other than their company – when after 11 different conversations, we learned that they were having server problems.  Fortunately I had others helping me – because I would have been a screaming maniac had I had to deal with these “first line agents” alone.

Which reminds me – I want to “plug” Constant Contact.  They are the service I use to send you this newsletter, and other information/invitations as well.  I’ve been using them for years and they are the most wonderful, helpful and cooperative service I’ve ever used.  They don’t try to get off the phone as quickly as possible – rather they are dedicated to staying with you until you are satisfied with the outcome.  They are really the role-model for excellent customer service.

Internal Customer Service

While I am on the subject ….   The other day I needed to use the restroom at a business I was visiting.  The janitor told me I had to wait until he was finished cleaning the room.  I had to “persuade” him that my need superseded his schedule.  It took a few tries, but he left so that I could do what I needed to do.

When I mentioned it to the executive I was meeting with, she remarked that was one of the problems they were facing:  Poor internal customer service.

Somehow it reminds me of the people who have company manners and really bad everyday manners, or the spouses who stop taking care of their personal grooming and appearance once they have “hooked” their mate.

Remember the old expression “familiarity breeds contempt?”

Why do we treat the stranger better than we treat those we see often – and probably care about much more than we do the stranger?  It’s an interesting question, isn’t it?

When consulting to a company of any size, I am usually working with people to help them understand the importance of them being helpful, cooperative, trustworthy and kind to each other.  Instead of silos, how about real executive teams!    Strangely enough this tendency towards rudeness and lack of cooperation even happens with startups.  Of course it is at its worst – most obvious – in large organizations.

Yet, if you think about it – everyone in an organization should have the same overall goals – which is to see their organization succeed in achieving its goals.  If that’s the same overall goal one would expect a high level of cooperation – of everyone pulling together – being in alignment, recognizing that each person in each department in each division is a piece of the puzzle all leading to the same overall successful outcome.


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