Wednesday, 24 August 2011

One Meaningful Thing Today: Customer Service Done Properly (30-day challenge)

Since one of our workmates is off on holiday to Poland (where I was a few weeks ago) and since the company I work for is a small company, we all felt it! It's August, and it's supposed to be a "dead month", everyone's in holiday, no one is shopping for lights or switches... but no, today especially the phone kept ringing and ringing! We did our best to cope with the situation, but there were a few cases today that we missed some calls - we were too busy with so many things to be done! ... anyways, this is a glimpse of things going on at where I work, which brings me to,

One Meaningful Thing Today:
Customer Service Done Properly!

I was NOT trained in customer service, but since I manage the online store I'm supposed to "know everything about every product on the website", so I also take calls from customers, helping them, especially when it comes to placing orders online, finding products online, browsing, issues with the payments or the website, etc. Anyways, today there were a few customers that simply called in, asked questions and, before I could even answer their question, they answered their own question and thanked me! How cool is that!

But this is not the Customer Service Done Properly I wanted to talk about - no, what I discovered today is that it's one word: LISTEN! We are all so full of ideas, opinions, feelings, moods, issues, and all other stuff. So when a customer calls, the best thing you can do is to LISTEN! And today it happened that this is what I did - I simply listened to this particular customer! Since the online stores and the online stuff is sometimes abstract and not-so-obvious, many times most people need help - at least they need assistance. Even in a physical superstore you need an assistant to show you where stuff is!

This particular customer was on the phone with me for at least 15 minutes, and most of the time I was listening to her going through the steps that the website indicated, clicking, entering data, card details, etc - I was just indicating small things here and there, "guiding her". But the key is that I was not "rushing her" - I simply listened and sometimes said something. It happened to me before several times - especially with elderly customers - that all we needed to do is to "assist" them and they would know how to do it! Most young customers are rushing, they think they know, they mess up, and they still blame us! This is not a stereotype, it's just something we as young ones tend to do! This particular customer eventually placed the online order and gave me a warm "thank you for your time, I really appreciate that! I will recommend you to my friends..."

This is NOT an add for the company I work, but a random story of a meaningful thing I did today - I listened to a customer and guided her, for an extended time over the phone, to place an order online on our website. The key: LISTEN. Now to the REAL side of the story - all the physical and outward things can have principles for life behind them, even spiritual principles. Here's at least 2 such principles I saw here:

  • I need to learn to LISTEN to people - listen to the ones around me, to the saints, to my co-workers, to the ones in my vital group, to my siblings and family members, to everyone who happens to be around me and is somehow related to me. Yes, sometimes I can help or I can get help, but listening is most important. Watchman Nee said that the first characteristic of a servant of the Lord is that he is perfected and trained to LISTEN(to the Lord, to the saints, to the Spirit within, to the Lord's speaking, and to the people) (in, The Character of the Lord's Worker).
  • When we come to the Lord, HE LISTENS TO US! This is our experience - we come to Him with all our problems, situations, cares, woes, tears, persons, relationships, disappointments, etc, and He listens to us, takes our burden upon Himself... He doesn't stop us to speak, He is not impatient, and He doesn't straight ahead rebuke us or turn His back on us. Sometimes He speaks to us, but most times He gives us the sense of life and peace, and He listens + comforts us / cares for us with His presence...
Lord, make me one who learns to LISTEN to people and LISTEN to the Lord! Which reminds me, maybe I should listen to the Lord right now and stop :) But not before I invite YOU - the reader - to leave your thoughts and comments below. What do you think? I know I have not explored in-depth what customer care means, but I hope you have a better experience or something that you think it would help me / others... :) 


  1. " know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived--that is to have succeeded." (Ralph Waldo Emerson)
    You know, one day after an especially difficult day of dealing with the Spanish customer service, I called my american bank and was refreshed with the simple banter, greeting and general customer service of the lady that handled my call. Why? Because she had a smiled on her face (yes it was over the phone, but you can tell!) and she listened, actually listened to what I was saying. Listening. wow. To listen to someone. Novel concept. :) yes. It makes a world of difference, and this is the number one most important thing that we need to learn to have in every part of our lives. Imagine what the Lord could do if we came into His presence and LISTENED? Imagine how much deeper all our human relationships would be...I also recall WN talking about our need to listen. Not just to what people are saying, but also to what they are implying, what they are not saying, and so many other dimensions. Wow. There is so much there. Lord make us the best listeners. :) :) :)

  2. My apologies for "not listening" - which was the point of this article, I think... You're right, I remember the tedious and beaurocratic customer service on the continent... and I know what you mean, to talk to someone who has a smile on his/her face on the other side of the line...

    Yes.... LISTEN. I think I CAN listen, but when the Lord in His mercy exposes me / us in situations, you really see that you can't really listen - you don't have the capacity or willingness to! But, Lord, do it in us!

  3. Apologies accepted.
    Only the Lord in us can make us adequate listeners. From my own experience, I know that in order to be a real listener, there must be a constant contact with my spirit. Otherwise what I hear becomes "tainted" by my own opinions, concepts, feelings, thoughts or sometimes I just very simply stop listening and become lost in the wonderful world inside my head.
    But the wonderful God-man enthroned in our being can listen in us, discern in us, and flow out from within us...
    Oh Lord, make us the best listeners that You may live out Your humanity through us!


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