Coming up with a definition for great customer service is difficult—and vendor dependent. For example, when I’m at McDonald’s, my definition of customer service involves getting my order right, getting me my food fast, and delivering it with a smile. But that is what I expect—and McDonald’s knows that. They know their customers are looking for the right order, at the right price, in the right amount of time.

Although defining exceptional customer service becomes a bit more complicated for professional services firms, at the core, it’s still about a comprehensive understanding of who your customers are and what they want. Remember the “The More You Know…” public service announcements? Well, the more you know, the better service provider you can be.

So, how do we get this information? WE ASK. Learn everything you can about your current and prospective clients/customers so that you can exceed their expectations and anticipate their needs.

A service superior organization that asks? The grocery store chain, Wegmans. Not only are you floored by the presentation when you walk through the doors, but you are also asked what you think during your shopping experience. I was at the meat counter and the butcher asked me if there was anything that I was hoping to see that wasn’t a selection. I was floored—there was every possible meat product one could want displayed, but they still asked!

It is part of human nature—we like to be asked. We want to feel valued and know our opinions matter. Good service providers ask and implement. Even better service providers take that information and anticipate needs. Think about when Amazon offers you books you might like based on past purchases. With access to consumer data and purchasing history, and the promise to not abuse information, many service providers could positively impact their bottom line. Personalized service. Trust. Anticipation of needs. Information as sales power. The possibilities for the definition and evolution of exceptional service are endless.

We want to know what you think!

  • How would you define great customer service today? 
  • Have you been asked for your opinion at a vendor recently?
  • How do you see customer service evolving?
  • How could your favorite store or service provider better serve you? Do you have a service “wish list”?

Post your response!


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