Customer service, and the wider customer experience, is impacted upon by every member of your team.
That means whenever a customer interacts with your organisation, directly or indirectly, it has an impact upon their perception of you and your service.
And in a hyper competitive environment, there is little room for disappointment.
This is why every company needs a dedicated customer service leader.
Question is, what skills must they possess to ensure customers enjoy the highest levels of service?
How do they ensure quality across the customer journey from start to finish?
Where can they influence the actions of staff to leave the best possible impression on new and existing customers alike?
An Ongoing Relationship, Not A One Off Interaction
Before diving in, it’s important to note that customer service is not a one off.
A rise in the terms “customer experience” and “customer journey” indicates that organisations are pivoting to consider customer service as a crucial part of an ongoing relationship.
Point of service is no longer a one off engagement.
The role of a customer service leader is to ensure that, even if your product is a one time purchase, consistent, positive relationships are cultivated with all custoemrs.
Not only will happy customers tell everyone about your brilliant offering, becoming customer orientated ensures your teams are focussed on converting more opportunities, instead of apologising to or handling the support queries of those you’ve let down.
7 Essential Skills Of A Customer Service Leader
So what makes an excellent experience leader? Which traits are required to excel in the role of a customer service leader?
Lets find out…
As the leader of your organisation’s customer experience offering, you’ll not only need to galvanise and engage your own team, but also inspire the entire organisation to commit to a culture of customer centricity.
Being able to translate your own enthusiasm and passion, via clear and effective communication, will ensure every customer facing role is bought into your mission.
Service is provided by everyone. Communicating a message of excellence as essential, across the whole team, is vital.
Directly linked to communication, customer service leaders need to foster particularly strong relationships with key stakeholders in customer facing departments.
Breaking down the silos that prevent cross-department, customer focussed collaboration should be a key goal for anyone in the role of a customer service leader.
The ability to build and maintain prosperous relationships with both internal and external stakeholders will ensure your operation runs smoothly within and without of the business.
Project & Time Management
“Project management skills are the single most important skill set needed for customer experience improvement.”Maurice Fitzgerald
Your customer’s time is valuable and so is yours.
Customers do not want to feel rushed. But they also don’t want to have to wait around to have their needs met.
Akin to this, your team members need enough time to complete all of their duties without feeling overly pressured leading to a lower quality output.
As with any field, stasis leads to stagnation.
Truly forward thinking customer service and experience leaders will always be looking for new ways to innovate and differentiate.
Being able to identify improvement opportunities and develop innovative strategies to increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and retention will help set you apart from the pack.
Even the most common concerns don’t always have a “one size fits all” solution. It takes creativity to determine the most effective and efficient way to meet your customer’s needs.
Finding creative solutions requires you to go beyond standard operating procedures and consider the nuance of the problem before you.
For customer’s with complex problems, finding a creative solution can build loyalty and showcase your company’s ability to meet dynamic needs.
Data analysis, and a capacity to act on your findings, is critical for any experience leader.
“4 out of 10 chief executives pointed towards an inability to implement the right data technology.
85% also stated that they strive hard, yet struggle, to implement the proper solutions from their data insights.”KPMG
Collecting customer data from different sources generates insights to identify opportunities.
Likewise, assign relevant KPIs to your customer facing teams. Tracking service related data allows you to monitor existing levels to identify areas for improvement.
Lead & Support
Customer service leaders need to be prepared to inspire their teams and to potentially address escalated customer concerns.
Strong leadership skills require a focus on resolving both customer and team member concerns with empathy and consideration.
Training and supporting team members so they can provide services or products that meet, or ideally exceed, customer expectations is an essential trait for an aspirational leader.
The less your team rely on you for the day to day, the more time you can focus on elevating the service experience as a whole.
Last but certainly not least, a great team leader is accountable for their own actions as well as for the actions of their team.
Your customer’s satisfaction and your team’s performance are your responsibility.
When a team leader accepts accountability for the team, it builds trust and loyalty within the work environment.
Team members feel empowered to take responsibility for their customer’s satisfaction when they know they are supported by their team leader.
A good leader will never have a great team. It takes a great leader to guide others into achieving success.
Ready to explore how Anthill can revolutionise your customer service capabilities? Schedule a demo today.
January 24th, 2023-