Customer service is the lifeblood of a business—no matter what it is. The better your service, the higher your profits, all things being equal. So, naturally, you’d want your employees to deliver epic customer service. Giving them the right training is a sure-fire way to ensure they do.
Formal customer service training can be costly, however. And if you’re a small business, you may lack the funds to invest in employee training. But you don’t have to let a limited budget stop you from training customer service staff.
There are a lot of cost-effective ways you can train your customer service representatives without breaking the bank. But first, you need to define what good customers service is for your employees.
Defining customer service serves as a baseline for employees about what epic customer service is. Plus, they’ll know what your expectations are. Also, look for ways to show employees good customer service. These examples hammer home the principles of good customer service.
Below are six proven tips to help train your CSRs:
Listening allows employees to deliver excellent customer service. So, train them to be active listeners. Active listening includes techniques like letting customers finish their sentences before responding and repeating back to customers what they say their problem is. It makes them feel like they’ve been heard.
CSRs often get angry, frustrated callers, so teach your CSRs how to handle difficult calls—especially your frontline staff. If you lack the budget for it, check out online training courses. They can be a cost-effective way to teach employees critical phone skills.
In addition to using online training courses, you can download helpful articles on customer service and distribute them to your CSRs. Then discuss key points from the articles at staff meetings. Also, discuss how you might incorporate these ideas into what you do.
Hold monthly luncheons where you give seasoned CSRs a chance to present to other members of the staff. That lets you take advantage of the expertise of seasoned CSRs that have been built up over the years. Shared learning also teaches your team to become adept at solving problems and increases their knowledge.
Sometimes all it takes to help a customer is knowing who to call or talk to at the company. Great CSRs know the company inside out. An excellent place to start the transfer of company knowledge is during on-boarding. Use this time to inspire workers to strive for a deep understanding of your company
A great way to keep workers informed about what’s happening at a company is to introduce them to other employees not in their department. Cross-functional teaming does that. So, does scheduling tours of other areas of your company. You can also have workers from other departments present during a staff meeting or a lunch and learn.
One caveat about training customer service people. Training employees to provide epic customer services isn’t worth much if you don’t empower them to solve problems on their own. So, empower your CSRs and give them some guidelines on what they can and can’t do.
You also should give them the leeway to provide creative or alternative solutions to thorny problems when guidelines don’t work. Just limit the solutions to a certain amount or specific promotions. That way your CSRs don’t give away the store when helping customers.