First things first…
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
I had a terrific holiday in Santa Fe and hope your holidays were just as wonderful.
The shirt presents were hits; I got to see first hand how many smiles they can generate. I didn’t think I would get Richard out of his “I’m the decider” shirt. Thanks to the team for great execution on these presents!!!
Speaking of the team, I wanted to write a note about our customer service team before it would be considered tooting my own horn.
Before I joined Spreadshirt, I placed some orders to understand the full Spreadshirt offering. When I talked to our US Service Director, Denise, during the interview process, I shared my positive experience with her team on one order that had an issue. She thanked me, then proceeded to tell me about what had happened. What’s surprising here? She took initiative to investigate whether I had placed any orders before talking to me. I hadn’t told the Spreadshirt folks that I had placed the orders, but she checked. Since I’ve joined, I see that Denise runs her team this way, they investigate problems, and that provides differentiated service.
Research, investigation… whatever you want to call it… makes a difference, and it’s something I live by. It takes time, but even if you’ve gone down the wrong path, it works. It shows people — customers, partners, employees, colleagues, press, analysts — that you care enough to think through their situation. The key, it must be real, not mechanical. This is the quality that Denise brings out in her team, and it makes for rave reviews… and not just from me! My Google Watch on our name is regularly bringing up praise for our service team, which I happily forward along.
As a manager, how do you ensure a customer service team that holds this as a key goal?
- Hire people that are curious.
- Hire people that naturally show they care.
- Hire people that don’t get stuck on one theory to the exclusion of others.
The good news is that these are fairly clear qualities to get to during an interview. So, what’s on my shirt today? It is a bit long, but speaks to the essence of all three points:
In science, the most exciting phrase is not “Eureka!”, but “Hmm… that’s funny…” — Asimov
Thanks to a customer service team that I’m proud to represent!