Customer service is something I am extremely passionate about.
The way it is delivered can make or break your business but unfortunately in New Zealand it is something at which we still need a bit of practice.
You can attend all the courses in the world about customer service but if you don't ‘feel the love' it will be as effective as the fake smile painted on your face.
I subscribe to the adage that ‘the customer is always right'. However this sentiment often carries an undertone of sarcasm. The key to successful customer service is to believe it. The customer IS always right because they are prepared to spend their money with you!
When a customer walks through the doors of our beauty salon, whether she visits once a week, or once a year, or is just passing through I believe we have an obligation to show her 100 per cent respect. And when she leaves the salon we want her to feel appreciated for coming.
Many beauty treatments place women in a vulnerable position and we need to respect that. All beauty treatments are hands-on which makes it very personal and we need to remember that a client has chosen to place her trust in us. Like a visit to the doctor, it is important that her dignity is preserved and privacy maintained.
Customer service is all about building relationships. Taking the time to get to know your clients is crucial. Our brain is wired to store information with which we have an emotional connection. If you are really listening to your clients, rather than partaking in idle chatter, it won't be hard to remember the details of their children, their pets and what they like to do on the weekend. You will enjoy your job more and, if you truly and sincerely look after your customers, they won't want to spend their dollar elsewhere.
It is equally important not to be too pushy. Pushy sales may get the dollar today, but may lose the customer's confidence and trust in you. Getting the balance right is the key to exceptional customer service and it all goes back to knowing your client and what they are comfortable with.
In return, it is helpful if customers and clients show the same respect by speaking up when they are not happy with a product or service.
While this may not always feel comfortable, it is only fair that you give business owners the opportunity to correct their mistakes and improve their service.
A successful business owner will be continually striving to improve the way in which they deliver their product or service and your feedback – good or bad – is invaluable.
In a world where we are playing out more and more of our lives online, it is always refreshing to receive good, old-fashioned customer service, that makes you leave with a smile on your face and the feeling that someone cares.
|Article written by Suzanne Edmonds, owner of De Lux Beauty.
You can email Suzanne at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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