Customer Service: 3 Ways to Improve from a Learning and Development Point of View

March 29, 2018 David Witt

 

Want to improve customer service? Three learning and development techniques can help.

In a recent video interview about the release of The Ken Blanchard Companies new Legendary Service program, co-creator Dr. Vicki Halsey shares how vision, learning, and self-reflection can be used to improve service.

An Inclusive Service Vision

“You need a service vision as a first step,” says Halsey.  “Otherwise, people can see service as someone else’s responsibility that’s not really related to their own job.”

To illustrate her point, Halsey shares a story about work she did with the major league baseball team the San Diego Padres.

“We when began our work with the San Diego Padres, they saw themselves as being in the Sports Entertainment business—so employees taking tickets or selling drinks really didn’t have a service vision.”

That’s what led Halsey to work with the Padres executive team to develop a vision all of their employees could rally around: the business of Making Major League Memories.

“Now what is everyone trying to do?  They are trying to deliver a major league memory. A great service vision like this can make it easier for each employee to know how to behave on a day-to-day basis to really serve people at a higher level.”

The Gift of Learning

Halsey also suggests service providers get into the learning business by teaching their customers about their products and services.

“People love learning—including the distinctions of how your product was created, what makes it exceptional, and how it makes them, the customer, exceptional for purchasing it.”

Halsey shares a fun story of how one car dealer used this approach with her husband to increase his loyalty.

“This dealer sat with my husband for two hours, teaching him the history of the engine and everything that had gone into that car. As a result, over the years, my husband has gone back to that dealer again and again to buy new versions of the same car.

“Teach your customers,” encourages Halsey.  “It makes them feel smart and keeps them loyal to your organization.”

A Little Self-Reflection

Finally, Halsey recommends taking a second look at your beliefs around customer service.

“Customers are the reason we are in business—so we need to be responsive in the way they want us to respond. Are we empowering our people in a way that lets them bring the best of who they are to the moment of care when they are serving others?

“Our Legendary Service program gives you a chance to look at your customer service vision and values and choose what you want to be remembered for so that you can create those lasting memories of care that drive customer devotion.”

Use this link to see Halsey’s complete interview, along with other resources, in the Research & Insights section of The Ken Blanchard Companies website.

 

About the Author

David  Witt

David Witt is a Program Director for The Ken Blanchard Companies. He is an award-winning researcher and host of the companies’ monthly webinar series. David has also authored or coauthored articles in Fast Company, Human Resource Development Review, Chief Learning Officer and US Business Review.

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