6th-10th is Customer Service Week. Proclaimed by Congress in 1992, it is "a
national event devoted to recognizing the people on the front lines of the service revolution." Because
I believe that truly customer focused organizations are higher performers, I support
Customer Service Week. But I must admit that my cynical side sees the week
as just so much hoopla - a once a year feel good push with no lasting results. Easy
to put up a banner, send your customers a thank you note and do fun stuff with your service
teams, but the real issue is what you do all day every day to meet and yes, exceed your customer's
needs and wants. The challenge is to develop specific standards of service,
train to them, measure against them and to continually seek the input of your customers.
Is it still a revolution in 2008? Did the customer win the revolution? Did
the revolution succeed in getting customers better service? It may be because we evaluate
service every day and thus have become jaded but has the level of service declined since Congress
made its proclamation? We all have horror stories of bad service. In the last two
weeks alone, I could write a tome on the incredibly bad service I have received from Intuit
Software, Capital One credit cards and yes, the perennial winner of the "we don't care, we don't have to, we're the Behemoth Bank",
Bank of America. But, I would rather focus on the good guys - on the organizations
that really do deliver superior service. In honor of those organizations and individuals
toiling in customer ser vice who give their best to every customer, I would like to recognize an honest to goodness "customer focused" company: Curry Printing.
Curry Printing is our printer
and they earned that honor by winning a small printing job from us and then knocking our socks
off with great service and thus earning all of our business. Why are they different? What have
they done to win our admiration and loyalty?
they turn around quotes faster than lightening
they ask the right questions to insure that their customers receive exactly what they expect and need
their production is high quality
their staff is professional, knowledgeable, pleasant and focused on saying: "if that's the way you need it, you got it"
they regularly call to ask if we're happy and to assess how they're doing
they go the extra mile - they do the little extras that build customer loyalty
And their prices are truly competitive - proving you CAN deliver quality work and high levels of service at an affordable price! Kudos
to Curry Printing for their demonstrated customer dedication!
So, as Customer Service Week approaches, ask what your organization is doing or should be doing to build happy, loyal customers. Use
Customer Service Week for more than just empty hoopla. Start your organization on the
path to defining standards of service, to measuring your service and taking corrective action,
to hiring the right service oriented employees, to writing job descriptions that include service
metrics and to consistently asking your customers to evaluate your performance and by asking
what you can do to exceed their expectations.
To learn about the steps
Curry Printing took to become truly customer focused, read the interview with Robert Gardner,
Customer Service Manager. Click on the link to the right.
To learn how your organization can build a competitive advantage through superior service, call Catalytic Management at 978-562-5001 or visit our web site at
"If You Make a Promise, Keep It"
Sales & Service Excellence
Watch for articles this fall in CEO Refresher, Providence Business News and Womens Business Journal
Oct 23rd Shelley will be a panelist for The Boston Club
"Lead Generation in Uncertain Times"
Nov 20th, Shelley will moderate the meeting of the Institute of Management Consultants
" Before You Fire Your Client"
Catalytic Management specializes in business performance and growth
including sales effectiveness, customer service and business
process improvement for companies
in New England and the Northeast.