As your customer base grows it’s imperative that you maintain the same level of service that you provided when you first earned your customer’s business. You have to anticipate their needs before they announce them, and put those actions in place. Meeting these expectations will cement your relationships, increase their satisfaction, and retain their business. Here are six customer expectations that are the cornerstone of outstanding service and increased sales:
1. Customers Expect Solid Information.
Providing your customers with tangible information lets them know that you value them and respect their ability to make sound decisions. When they feel that they’re respected, they’re more open and willing to do more business with your company. One way to ensure they receive beneficial information is to ask probing questions during your conversations to uncover needs they may not have voiced. For instance, ask about the objectives they’ve set for their company, and the problems associated with attaining them.
2. Customers Expect Options.
Customers don’t want to be told that there’s only one way or one solution. They’ll respond positively when they’re given options. Options are essential because they create dialogue and
discussion. Open dialogue can lead to more sales.
3. Customers Expect Single Source Service.
Customers don’t want to be transferred to every unit of your
business to have their problems solved. They want to be able to
do business with you with the slightest amount of discomfort. You must be easy to do business with. This means taking ownership of your customer’s requests, problems, etc., and ensuring that their needs are met to their satisfaction.
2.5 Body Language
How to read body language
Up to 93 % of communication is non-verbal. Including tone of voice, eye movement, posture, hand gestures, facial expressions and more. The pressure of body language can especially be felt in emotional situations. Body language usually prevails over words. Are you good at reading body language?
The eyes communicate more than any other part of the human anatomy. Staring or gazing at others can create pressure and tension in the room. Gangs have fought over the way someone looked at them. A researcher suggests that individuals who can routinely out gaze another develop a sense of control and power over others not so inclined. Maintained eye contact can show if a person is trustworthy, sincere or caring. Shifty eyes, too much blinking can suggest deception. People with eye movements that are relaxed and comfortable yet attentive to the person they are conversing with are seen as more sincere and honest.
Eyebrow muscle draws the eyebrows down and toward the centre of the face if someone is annoyed. If someone is empathetic and caring during dialogue the eyebrows will not show the annoyed facial grimace.
The smile: There are 50 or so different types of human smiles. By analyzing the movements of over 80 facial muscles involved in smiling, researchers can tell when a smile is true. Look for the crinkle in the skin at the middle, outside corner of the eyes and if it is not there, the smile is probably fake. Authentic smiles are smiles that “crest” or change rapidly from a small facial movement to a broad open expression.
2.6 Detecting if someone is lying
The following techniques to telling if someone is lying are often used by police and security experts. This knowledge is also useful for managers, employers, and for anyone to use in everyday situations where telling the truth from a lie can help prevent you from being a victim of fraud/scams and other deceptions.
Warning: Sometimes Ignorance is bliss; after gaining this knowledge, you may be hurt when it is obvious that someone is lying to you.
Signs of Deception:
Body Language of Lies:
• Physical expression will be limited and stiff, with few arm and hand movements. Hand, arm and leg movement are toward their own body the liar takes up less space.
• A person who is lying to you will avoid making eye contact.
• Hands touching their face, throat & mouth. Touching or scratching the nose or the ear. Not likely to touch his chest/heart with an open hand.
Emotional Gestures & Contradiction
• Timing and duration of emotional gestures and emotions are of a normal pace. The display of emotion is delayed, stays longer and would naturally, then stop suddenly.
• Timing is off between emotions gestures/expressions and words. Example: Someone says “I love it!” when receiving a gift, and then smiles after making that statement, rather than at the same time the statement was made.
• Gestures/expressions don’t match the verbal statement, such as frowning when saying “I love you.”
• Expressions are limited to mouth movements when someone is faking emotions (like happy, surprised, sad, awe,) instead of the whole face. For example; when someone smiles naturally their whole face is involved: jaw/cheek movement, eyes and forehead push down, etc.
2.7 Effective Communication
Yes… communication, communication, communication. Every Marketing/Product or People’s Manager will tell you that this is the key to success and who am I to tell you otherwise! It is true! The way you communicate helps other people to form an opinion about you, about your ideas or about a product that you want to sell or buy. It doesn’t matter much if you have great ideas and you can’t transmit them in an effective way. Communication is a two-way process (speaking and listening) and you can’t be an effective communicator if you don’t master both.
- Start by always mentioning the points in common and accept different opinions by others
- Nonverbal communication. What you do and how you do it is as important as your words.
- Transmit something that others can find useful. Find what they need and work on it!
- Be confident when you speak, being thoughtful but not emotional
- Keep different opinions out of the personal level. “Attack” opinions, not the one that represents it
- Have a logical and organized presentation and avoid mixing concepts or ideas. Try to be clear and effective
2.8 The 10 Commandment of Customer Service
1. Know who is boss. You are in business to service customer needs, and you can only do that if you know what it is your customers want. When you truly listen to your customers, they let you know what they want and how you can provide good service. Never forget that the customer pays our salary and makes your job possible.
2. Be a good listener. Take the time to identify customer needs by asking questions and concentrating on what the customer is really saying. Listen to their words, tone of voice, body language, and most importantly, how they feel. Beware of making assumptions – thinking you intuitively know what the customer wants. Do you know what three things are most important to your customer?
Effective listening and undivided attention are particularly important on the show floor where there is a great danger of preoccupation – looking around to see to whom else we could be selling to.
3. Identify and anticipate needs. Customers don’t buy products or services. They buy good feelings and solutions to problems. Most customer needs are emotional rather than logical. The more you know your customers, the better you become at anticipating their needs. Communicate regularly so that you are aware of problems or upcoming needs.
4. Make customers feel important and appreciated. Treat them as individuals. Always use their name and find ways to compliment them, but be sincere. People value sincerity. It creates good feeling and trust. Think about ways to generate good feelings about doing business with you. Customers are very sensitive and know whether or not you really care about them. Thank them every time you get a chance.
On the show floor be sure that your body language conveys sincerity. Your words and actions should be congruent.
5. Help customers understand your systems. Your organization may have the world’s best systems for getting things done, but if customers don’t understand them, they can get confused, impatient and angry. Take time to explain how your systems work and how they simplify transactions. Be careful that your systems don’t reduce the human element of your organization.
6. Appreciate the power of “Yes”. Always look for ways to help your customers. When they have a request (as long as it is reasonable) tell them that you can do it. Figure out how afterwards. Look for ways to make doing business with you easy. Always do what you say you are going to do.
7. Know how to apologize. When something goes wrong, apologize. It’s easy and customers like it. The customer may not always be right, but the customer must always win. Deal with problems immediately and let customers know what you have done. Make it simple for customers to complain. Value their complaints. As much as we dislike it, it gives us an opportunity to improve. Even if customers are having a bad day, go out of your way to make them feel comfortable.
8. Give more than expected. Since the future of all companies lie in keeping customers happy, think of ways to elevate yourself above the competition. Consider the following:
* What can you give customers that they cannot get elsewhere?
* What can you do to follow-up and thank people even when they don’t buy?
* What can you give customers that are totally unexpected?
9. Get regular feedback. Encourage and welcome suggestions about how you could improve. There are several ways in which you can find out what customers think and feel about your services.
* Listen carefully to what they say.
* Check back regularly to see how things are going.
* Provide a method that invites constructive criticism, comments and suggestions.
10. Treat employees well. Employees are your internal customers and need a regular dose of appreciation. Thank them and find ways to let them know how important they are. Treat your employees with respect and chances are they will have a higher regard for customers. Appreciation stems from the top. Treating customers and employees well is equally important.