This firstly applies to our people. (Yes, our people first, customers come next.) If we are constantly asking how we can help them do their job; provide more training; deal with a customer situation; provide better service; improve communications, we will have a group of people who know we’ve really got their backs. And, as Tony Hseih the renowned CEO of Zappos famously said, “You can’t provide good service from unhappy employees.”
Asking the right questions and then listening to what is said (and meant) is the first step to a workplace where our customers will receive the very best service.
Making these four words a mantra for our people to be asking our customers will provide the same level of response. It’s simply not good enough to assume we know what the customer needs; in many cases, if we are providing the answers, we are better placed to provide the answers than the customer. It’s a matter of asking the right questions.
To understand the customer requirements, we need to have a complete understanding of the problems that the customer is experiencing. Only then can we have any chance of providing a solution.
The third group within our business relationships where these four words are appropriate is that comprising our strategic alliances – those providing us with a service – suppliers, consultants, financiers, advisers and accountants. If we’re asking them this question, they will provide us with information that allows us to do the same in return. The outcome will be that they will be of greater benefit to us and our business.
By encouraging the use of these four words at every opportunity internally and externally, our businesses will be the better for it.
Now, How Can I Help?