Customer service is a feeling not an action

When a caller comes through it goes without saying that they can’t see our face, they can’t read our expressions and they can’t monitor our body language. They have only our tone to go off, our inflection and perhaps most importantly, the words of our carefully crafted scripts.

Our agents might know those scripts off by heart and the Compliance team monitoring and marking the calls will pick up if you’ve missed a few sentences or changed a few words, but the caller on the other hand has no idea. In fact, it’s most likely that they won’t remember the exact words you’ve used at all. What matters to the caller is the service you provided.

I called a contact centre only yesterday, less than 24 hours ago, and I wouldn’t be able to tell you everything we discussed. I don’t remember the agent’s name nor what exact words were shared between us. What I can remember however is that I was unhappy with the customer service. It wasn’t because the agent didn’t stick to the script or tick every box compliance-wise, I’m sure they did, but I was unhappy because customer service isn’t always about what you do, it’s about how you do it.

The job isn’t always an easy one, but the caller doesn’t need to know that. Tone and manner are just as important as a resolution. People will forget what you said, they may even forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel. When people call us it’s usually because they have a problem or a query. We need to make them feel listened to, understood and valued. We do this with our tone, not our script, and it’s service like this that makes the caller more willing to comply with a process or disregard how long a difficult call might take. It is this kind of service that sends the customer away feeling like the call wasn’t a waste of time.