Thursday, December 22, 2011

Some Basic Customer Service Tips For the Young Employee Who May or May Not Know Any Better

(I've written an addendum to this post.  You can read that here. )

I know it's a crazy time of year and that folks who work in retail and other service industries have probably had just about all that they can handle.  I have also worked in several different customer service positions over the years, so I suppose I'm particularly sensitive to how I am treated as a customer.

I try really hard to be a pleasant, considerate, respectful customer.  I'm afraid though that the art of good customer service is quickly getting lost.  And, I'm really not sure if some of the younger generation have actually been taught what they should do.

Thus, my list for those who maybe just don't know....

1. When a customer is standing at the counter where you are working, acknowledge them.
2. If you are not immediately able to help the customer say something like, "I will be with you in a moment".
3. Ignoring a customer hoping they'll just go away is not appropriate.
4. A customer is more important than the restocking or reorganizing you were working on. In fact, the customer is the reason you have items that need restocked/reorganized.
5. If you are a sales person from another department who stops in to a department where a customer is waiting & the sales person in charge is unaware you should also a)aknowledge the customer & b) alert the appropriate employee.
6. If the customer decides that he/she is not actually going to purchase the item she/he asked you to pull from a locked cabinet & price check, remember this is their perogative.   Rolling your eyes is not an appropriate response.
7. If a customer has 2 sleepy/cranky children with them, it would be ever so helpful to assist them in a timely manner.
8. If you legitimately did not realize the customer was standing there, when you are made aware it is gracious to say, "I'm so sorry. I didn't realize you were there. I didn't mean to make you wait. Can I help you?"

And, for those of us on the customer end, let's always remember to give a smile & a cheery greeting even when we don't receive the same.  You never know what kind of day someone has had!

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