Text Note - Transparency, Business Concept On Notepad
Credit: Text note - Transparency, business concept on notepad
In the unprecedented times we are currently facing, there has never been a greater need for transparency when dealing with our customers. By being effective and empathetic communicators, we allow transparency and trust to develop organically, therefore, building confidence with the customer in your brand and level of service being provided.
Put people first
Let’s face it, at the moment many people are scared, confused and yes, even angry and it can spill over into our business dealings very easily. In many instances, it may be easy for us to retaliate and reflect the tone and attitude we might be on the receiving end of. But take a minute, take a breath and reframe your approach. The adage “be nice to people, as you don’t always know what their back story is” should be something that we all try to aspire to remember. Whether you work in the service or product industry a bit of empathy and compassion can go a long way.
Don’t be surprised at the moment if your customers just want a listening ear. In many instances, your customers might just need a chance to process something out aloud or run through a scenario with someone who may have a fresh perspective. What customers need right now is understanding and empathy, so make sure you take the time to be available and offer them the time they need.
Use every platform you can
The art of conversation (be it in person or digitally) is a crucial aspect of any business, and during the current COVID-19 pandemic many of us (particularly in the service industry) have had to quickly alter and adapt the way we communicate with our customers. Whilst face to face communication has been limited for many, if there is something your customer needs to hear make sure the information is available to them. This includes utilising social media, emails, phone calls, zoom even the good old postal service!
Make sure your message can be understood. Don’t use over technical jargon or complicated language. Keep it short and keep it sweet. Ideally, this message should be congruent across all your platforms. In addition to relaying the message, it is also imperative that your customers understand what they can expect from your following communications. Are they to expect a follow-up phone call? An email? Let them know exactly the steps that are involved in your exchange, this will minimise confusion, stress and misinterpretation. They need to feel confident that you know what you are doing and how you are going to do it.
Don’t answer questions you don’t know the answer to
Seems simple enough, but is a massive
sinkhole if you fall into it. Just like was touched upon in the above point on
communicating clearly, it’s important that everyone receives consistent and
correct information. Its ok to say “I don’t have the answer for that right now,
but as soon as I can find out for you, I will let you know.” We don’t want to
confuse anyone and honesty is always the best policy.
By being transparent knowing your product
and service when dealing with your customers you are giving them the confidence
to believe you know your craft. Taking small steps in cementing positive
communication and empathy allows you to build honest and meaningful
interactions with your customers and clients, and at the end of the day, that’s
what customer service is all abo