Customer Service is Queen
I learned my lesson.
I thought if I hired an assistant, I could free myself from the repetitve tasks of the daily sales job. For me, that includes returns, website issues, “where’s my order?” emails, and more. “Man, I would get SO much of my day back if someone handled these issues for me.” That was the thought. Sure, I got part of my day back but I gained a whole new set of issues. Here is what I learned:
1. Small Customer Service Issues are More Important Than the Big Sale – Whether your clients are inside the walls of your own company or in another country, how we handle the small glitches are just as important (if not more) than the biggest sale they give us. Our customers are thinking, “Sure, they are there to take our large order but are they there throughout the entire lifecycle of the project?”
2. Personal Attention Cannot be Automated – Wouldn’t it be incredible if we could give our pissed off clients an automated email with something like, “I am so sorry to learn your order was delayed. Here is a $100 coupon for your next order. I value our business and look forward to the next time we can partner together.” Um, NO. That would never work! Every situation is different and no electronic form can replace the empathy our clients need to feel confident in our partnership, even with ups and downs.
3. Any Sales Person Who Says It’s All Roses is a Liar – As one of my collegues says, “More Money, More Problems.” It’s true. With larger and more complex projects comes more possibility for glitches. We know they are coming, it’s how we handle them that makes the difference. Setting expectations with our clients is most important so if a bottleneck pops up, we are both prepared to take action together.