Maybe they don’t have the positive attitude that we talked about in this month’s main story. Do they answer the phone with a smile on their face? Maybe they don’t have the proper training or instinct to help customers the way that they need it. Whatever the case, the costs can be detrimental to your business.
When I hire a new customer service person, I always interview them on the phone first. I listen to their voice messages, and how they act when they call me back. If there is any hint at not being 100-percent friendly, I won’t hire them. This is a policy that I’ve grown into after learning the hard way. I have made the mistake of hiring people that didn’t give great “phone,” and we heard about it from our clients almost immediately. It is incredible how fast people will complain about the person on the other end of the line only by how they sound.
On the flipside, we also hear all sorts of positive comments about people whom they speak to on the phone. I hear some positive feedback about all of my customer service representatives almost every week.
You may start to receive customer or client complaints within a few days. Long-term customers may recognize the incident as an anomaly and stick around for the value they know you can provide. At least that’s the hope. But a new customer? They’ll either complain to a manager about the incident or move on altogether. There is no way to know. But act quickly. Because you don’t know how and it can damage you, the minute you find a person is not 100% what you want, you need to deal with it right away.
You can’t afford to lose business because you made a hiring mistake. No one can. Find people who can regularly display empathy, remain positive, and work toward finding the right solution.
The important thing is not to grow too complacent with an employee who doesn’t have the right people skills to be able to serve your customers with a positive, helpful attitude. Remember, the alternative will cost you.