Look carefully at the graphic accompanying this column. There's a communication tool missing in the picture.
Can you guess what? Yep —it's the telephone, the original and oldest voice of all social media.
When I founded Telephone Doctor Inc., that object was the big, black thing on your desk that was taken for granted a lot. Abused, and used—mostly and sadly, improperly. Few swore by it; most swore at it.
The other day I was asked: “Nancy, with all that's going on out there in the customer service arena, what's changed? What's new?”
The answer...very little. Oh, some new “trends,” some new “channels” of communication. But the reality of it is, there are hundreds of books and articles on customer service—and it all boils down to the same things: Go the extra mile; say something nice; smile; and do unto others as you would have them do unto you, no matter what the trend.
It's not rocket science, not brain surgery. Just simply plain old common sense.
But as we know, common sense isn't that common today, is it?
So when the phone rings, pick it up with that smile—whether you feel like smiling or not. Thank the person on the other end of the line for calling, tell 'em what company they're reaching and say your name. Slowly and clearly.
Want to know a big fat secret? The telephone is still one of the best of the social interactions there is. Short, sweet and to the point.
May your phone ring long and loud and many times with good news!
Nancy Friedman's columns appear periodically in Tire Business online and in print. A customer service expert and frequent speaker at conventions, trade shows and training sessions, she is president of St. Louis-based Telephone Doctor Inc., an international customer service training company. She can be reached via email at [email protected] or by phone at 314-291-1012. Her website is www.nancyfriedman.com.