Many low-income earners aren’t accustomed to using traditional banks and credit unions for their financial service needs. Many didn’t observe their parents use banks for anything and see no reason to use banks themselves. Some of them even feel uncomfortable or embarrassed about their financial situation, and approach financial institutions on the offensive in every situation. This makes it hard for some of your potential customers to understand how to interact with your bank staff.
However, any good business owner or manager knows that no matter how much you advertise to get your customers in the door; no matter how comfortable and attractive you make your branch look with decor; it’s almost impossible to make up for poor customer service. And no matter what industry you’re in, most customers that receive poor customer service won’t visit a business again, (at least not until the person they had an issue with is working somewhere else), even if they really want to go there.
It’s important to understand that you deal with people who are making decisions regarding one of the most sensitive areas of their lives. Therefore, you must step back and reflect on every situation with compassion and respect every time you think to do it. Your customers are likely going through a lot in their lives that you may never know about or even understand.
Train your staff on excellent customer service strategies and why they’re important in your industry. Don’t expect your staff to know automatically how to deal with a situation, just because they’re naturally friendly or professional workers.
How to Offer Good Customer Service
Respect your customers. Be honest with them and sincere in your dealings with them. Friendliness and politeness without respect is phony and is another form of poor customer service. Make sure your staff understands who your clients are and has respect for them, without any feelings of superiority.
Handle disagreements in a professional way. Avoid being verbally combative or taking offence. Show customers that you can relate to whatever issue they’re experiencing.
Squash or water down the customer’s emotion with sentiments like:
“I understand why you’d be angry about that;”
“I don’t blame you for being upset; and”
- “I’m so sorry this happened;”
These types of statements calm the customer down and give everyone time to sort out the situation in a satisfying way for the customer.
Give the customers what they need. Does your customer need to vent? Is he angry? Does she need to feel miserable for a minute or share a story about how everything came to that point? Does he need to go somewhere and think, and then come back and talk? Allow that person to experience that, and if need be, take him or her to a private office to do so.
Ruby Newell-Legner once said that:
“It takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one unresolved negative experience.”
Businesses from all industries should take this to heart.