Hello to all. I trust 2021 is starting off in good fashion. My wish for you all is good health, safety and awareness.
I have heard the saying, “If you’re not changing you’re not growing”. I have related that quote to the fact that I as a person need to try and be on the move with learning new things, looking at different perspectives and considering the words of other people both positive and negative, so I can make informed decisions that affect me in a positive way.
Covid19 has made such an impact on the world that change is everywhere. The question remains though, “What is growing?”
I’d like to share my thoughts about the customer service experience and what I envision as potential growth opportunities in the CX space.
Growth in Emotional Intelligence and Human Care
When we talk about emotional intelligence, one of the pillars is empathy. The ability to put yourself in the customer’s shoes, getting to know your customer and sincerely relating to their needs is going to be paramount. The empathetic service person who puts the customer’s feelings first then builds the solution around solving the problem will have laid the foundation for a promising customer relationship. In the effort to find common areas that you and the customer can relate on, Covid19, while it may not be a pleasant talk it is relatable and the customer may just feel at ease to know someone else has shared in a similar experience.
In delivering the best customer experience possible, there is an important piece you must be mindful of. Your customer is not just a transaction. They are human, with feelings, concerns and emotions. Your genuine care towards the customer is a relationship building capability that means more to the customer than a sale. In fact, a couple of statistics say this:
100 Essential Customer Service Statistics and Trends for 2021 (nextiva.com)
Two-thirds of customers are willing to share personal information with companies–but only in exchange for some perceived value. – Accenture
68% of customers believe the key to great customer service is a polite customer service representative. – AE
“Customers do not care how much you know unless they know how much you care.” — Damon Richards, Customer Service Expert.
Forbes (I really like this one)
40 Customer Service Stats to Know in 2020 (hubspot.com)
70% of the customer’s journey is based on how the customer feels they are being treated. – McKinsey
So, in your daily interactions with the customer be mindful of what your customers may be feeling. In today’s times the customer may be going through something never experienced before and could use some intentional care and compassion above what the standard care would normally be.
Growth around the Virtual Space
As Covid has become this unwanted, but present fixture. Changes have been made to allow customers to do business and for businesses to stay in business safely. You see where schools have gone to virtual classrooms; online learning (for courses that used to be in the classroom) has become commonplace, and Zoom meetings to hold conferences where meetings took place in an office before. Work from home is the mandate for some businesses where they may not have considered this as an option.
I see the virtual space being a growth opportunity for the customer service experience. I envision virtual chat with AI capabilities will be a significant trend. This will allow for quick answers to questions and timely resolutions on common problems for customers. I also see virtual conferencing chat whereby the human emotional experience can not only be heard but seen from both ends of the conversation. Having a pulse on the customer’s concerns is critical with meeting their needs.
If you are on a virtual call seeing the customer, you can fine tune your expressions based on how the customer’s reactions ie., if there is a look of confusion, displeasure or the customer is smiling. Empathy, concern and acceptance can be gleaned from the virtual experience. This can make for an improved customer service experience.
Coupled with the virtual space, I see customer journey mapping becoming even more relevant for the customer experience. As a customer describes their journey navigating from point A to point B. The virtual experience would give a powerful impact with seeing the customer show emotions, gestures and sources of frustration/pain points. “The customer journey is the complete sum of experiences that customers go through when interacting with your company and brand. Instead of looking at just a part of a transaction or experience, the customer journey documents the full experience of being a customer.”
The best way to map the customer journey: take a walk in their shoes | SurveyMonkey
Thank you for taking the time to read my post. If you have found the information helpful or relevant to your customer service journey please share.