There are certain skills that employees need to master when they are facing their customers, regardless of the type of contact that you have with customers, whether it is over the phone, face-to-face, in a restaurant or shop, in an office or financial institution, in the entertainment or tourist industries, good customer service skills help everybody, ultimately if your employees have been given the right tools, they will deliver consistently exceptional customer service.
Training simply refers to the process of acquiring the essential skills required for a certain job. It targets specific goals, for instance understanding a process and operating a certain machine or system. Some of these are basics, such as polite, friendly, smiling, helpful attitudes, but some others don’t come as naturally and need a little bit of practice to give them more confidence.
Take one example: asking questions, this is a very big part of any good sales assistant. The more open questions you ask, the more information you will receive from the customer, the more efficiently you can give them exactly what they need.
Another example would be “selling”: you can’t sell anything if you don’t know your product or service. If you go to a restaurant and ask the waiter what is the soup of the day, he will never be able to sell that soup if he doesn’t know what it is today! It is the same with any product or service. The first part of any sale is the product knowledge.
So, take the time to train your employees on your products, what are the benefits for the customer then what are the features? Always start with the benefits and show them how they will meet their needs. A feature is simply a characteristic of your product or service, such as a camera that shoots up to ten megapixels, well the benefit could be that more megapixels will produce a better photo and a better way to capture important memories; this will mean more to the customer than a technical description.
When I run Customer Service Training sessions, I feel so overwhelmed by how positive all the employees were; and for the employees having their company spending time and money on them, giving them the tools to provide Excellent Customer Service is also a proof of their commitment.
I know, I know, you have heard it all before and most of you have experienced several training sessions over the years and are getting a bit blasé by it all, but the real point of training is hopefully to teach a thing or two, to refresh your memory on things you may not do, and if anything else to reassure you that you are doing ok and you can take that impostor syndrome feeling away.
Training your employees isn’t just a need, it is simply a necessity.