How to turn your customer service department into a profit center for your business – Zac Garside

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Growing up I was fascinated with public speaking and communications so I would learn everything I could about how to be a good communicator. After returning from serving on a mission, I was approached by Brigham Dickinson, the founder of Power Selling Pros, and he asked if I wanted to become a customer service coach. It was seamless for me because I was able to transition my skills from religion to customer service. Seven years later I’ve trained hundreds of CSRs (customer service reps) in the trades.

At Power Selling Pros, our goal is to help your team and especially your customer-facing members feel confident, self-reliant, and service-minded. The framework we teach all our clients is called the pattern for excellence. It is eight principles and I say principles not script intentionally. A script is a good place to start if you’re new. But as you gain experience, you want the dialog to flow naturally and have the eight principles guide you. The eight principles we teach are to be positive, be confident, listen, care, reassure them that you can help, ask for their business, build value before presenting pricing, and express sincere gratitude. When you do those eight well you create a wow customer experience.

Your customer service department should be a profit center for your business. The foundation is to have the right systems in place so that you can track and attribute the growth to the customer service department. I advocate for six basic metrics: number of calls, number of appointments booked, conversion percentage, number of service agreements sold, average talk time, and average time before a call is answered. When you know those numbers, you can evaluate whether your customer service department is helping your business grow. When you serve the customer well it doesn’t come across as pushy sales but rather as solving their problems.

When you get customer service right, it is a catalyst for change across your business. When you advertise to your customers, you are shouting. When you send a technician to your customer's home, the customer is on guard -- they just let a stranger into their house. There’s only one person in your organization the customer wants to talk to, the customer service representative. In every other part of your business, you must shout to be heard. But the CSR can whisper and the customer will hear every word.

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