Customer Service in Unexpected Places

The typical post for a title like this would be me talking about how I went to some store that you usually don’t expect good customer service at and having a very positive customer service experience.

My experience was actually talking to an executive at a Fortune 100 company that isn’t particularly known for customer service (at least not on a Nordstrom-like level). The company isn’t bad, but it’s not great, either (at least as far as I knew). This executive worked at a another company that was acquired by the big company and a big part of his job now is improving the customer service at this very large company.

Him and I spoke for quite a while about what the company was doing to improve its customer service. We talked about things ranging from the big picture of customer service to very, very small details that they were working on. I realized a few minutes into the conversation that this guy really did care about customer service and that he really was working hard on improving the company’s customer service.

That is what the funny thing about talking to people within companies is. You will often be surprised about the differences between the company as a whole (or what it seems externally) and the one executive. I am prepared to bet that a majority of companies (big companies, at least) have one or more executives that truly do care about customer service. They care about it a lot and want to make their companies customer service leaders.

The executive at the company I spoke with put me under the impression that the big company is trying to improve their customer service. However, with the scale they are working at, it’s tough and quite complicated. A little change can cost millions of dollars and change the way thousands of people do their jobs.

A majority of my posts are targeted at small to medium sized company, but don’t think they can’t be applied on a larger scale. If you are an executive at a big company and see something I talk about that interests you and want more details so you can try to apply it on a large scale, send me an email and we can talk about it. I’m more than happy to talk with you about implementing these things on a large scale.

The problem is that the management doesn’t always to cooperate. That may be where the Executive’s (Quick) Guide to Customer Service comes in (this post is good, too), but quite frankly, it just requires a lot of hard (and persistent) work. As “that executive” who cares about customer service – don’t give up hope. Management will eventually be convinced that customer service is beneficial and the way to go. It may take some (or a lot) of convincing, but it is possible.