I had a huge revelation this past week.
Beyond all the CRMs, company pronouncements about serving customers, and even our own “self-administered” customer service, there’s an inner strength that can endure when all other efforts falter. Here are a couple thoughts on the matter:
You’ve just been ignored, dissed or misinformed by a “customer service” rep.
Typically, that has caused me to fume and fuss, and sometimes take further steps to resolve the issue at a higher level of the company. Amid everything that’s going on, I realize that pretty much everyone, including even well-intentioned customer service reps, is stressed-out. So, I’m being a bit more tolerant. With that comes the realization that I can gain mindful, heartfelt insights when having less-than-stellar interactions. Dig deep enough into your own well of resources to see if there’s something else you can do to make the situation better.
For example, I’m currently getting up to speed about how to best use an audio interviewing record and written transcript. Initially, I wanted to sync them up completely. Finding that there’s somewhat of a learning curve here, and that customer service in this area is somewhat spotty, I’m looking instead at changing my focus a bit. In many cases, both audio and written transcript can be excerpted in small chunks to help reinforce a point versus posting the whole interview. (That can be done without any need to have the two totally sync up.)
And either/both always provide clear and accurate notes for writing an article. (I will admit, though, I’m old-school in that I typically prefer to actually take notes for articles. I learned from my father, the city editor, that you tend the capture the essence better this way. That said, it’s nice to have transcripts to confirm and reinforce.)
There are many opinions on how good a “customer service” job our government officials are doing in managing the contagion, economic and psychological elements of the COVID crisis.
I believe Colorado Gov. Jared Polis is doing a superb job of trying to balance the realities of all three. If you don’t contain the spread, more people will suffer and the disease impact is lengthier. If we wait too long and the economy can’t restart, it’s pretty much game over. And anxiety over returning to some semblance of normalcy can lead to all types of social unrest, in turn potentially triggering mass demonstrations that counter the core principle of social distancing.
To mitigate the impact of my own fretting about government’s handling of all this, I searched inward for ways to fulfill my wants for social interaction in a virtual world—and to distract me from the seemingly endless stream of sad, conflicting and sensationalized news. Through social media channels, I’m seeking out and finding new friends—and they’re finding me. It’s prompting a whole new level of discussion and exploration. It’s inspiring and certainly is helping fill the void of not having the usual interpersonal contact and social gatherings.
By being forced to look beyond our routine, we can discover so much richness and joy. Let your imagination go and see where it takes you!
Self-administered customer service is especially important right now. Try finding and appreciating people, places and things that give you joy and “customer satisfaction.” They’re all around and plentiful. This is truly an opportunity to explore and expand horizons. Give it a try.Mark Lusky
Read Part 1 of this series:
New discoveries and delights abound in this new normal world
Read Part 2 of this series:
New week brings new customer service silver linings
Do you have customer service snafus or stellar experiences to share? If so, feel free to comment on this post or email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark Lusky is a veteran writer, storyteller and author, with 40+ years of public relations, advertising, marketing and journalism experience.
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