Some Dos and Don’ts of Customer Service

by Joe Lavelle on December 6, 2009

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In my new book Act As If It Were Impossible to Fail, I use my experience as a professional life coach and career advisor to share tips that will help you get promoted and earn the higher salary that you desire.  You will learn about the critical act of networking, how to communicate with peers, employers, and clients, and how to make yourself an invaluable member of the team.

One important action that should be taken by any professional is an ongoing process of evaluation.  Take some time to reflect on your performance.  What are you doing well?  What can be improved?  Ask the same questions of the workers you see as you go about your daily errands.

For instance, I took the time to make some mental notes while going through the check-out line at my local grocery store recently about the customer service I was receiving.  Here are a few of my thoughts:

1. DO acknowledge my presence in some way as I approach the cash register.  A quick “hello” with perhaps even some minimal eye contact will suffice.

2. DON’T complain to the cashier in the next lane about how much you hate your job and how you cannot wait to go on break.

3. DO scan my items quickly and with care.

4. DON’T carry on conversations with other employees (or worse on a cell phone) while checking me out.

5. DO ask the shopper who arrives in your express line with 25 items after cutting me off with her cart to move to another lane.

6. DON’T just offer an apathetic shrug when I let you know that I couldn’t find one of the products I had hoped to buy.  Let me know where the item is located or get the attention of someone who can.

Whether you are a CEO with decades of work experience behind you or a stock boy who is working after school, you must make sure that you and your team are focused on good customer service at all times.

Think about your own trips to your favorite store or restaurant.  What did the salesperson, cashier, or waiter do that detracted from your experience?  Did the server repeatedly confuse the drink orders at your table?  Did an employee at an electronics store show no working knowledge of the television you wanted to buy?  Let me know!

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