Are you in search of Exceptional Customer Service Soft Skills? Well, here you have it. In this post, you will learn some CS skills.
Customer service is catering to your customer’s needs in a way that affects the company’s image. Customer service can be poor, good, or exceptional. Outstanding customer service exceeds customers’ expectations; when you provide excellent customer service, you, your team members, and the organization benefit differently.
When you provide exceptional customer service, you feel a sense of accomplishment. Happy customers motivate you to do more if you love helping people. Your colleagues have lesser problems to solve. It also brings positive vibes to the team; some could see you as a role model. Lastly, your organization benefits in profit because you have retained a customer.
The benefits of outstanding customer service are innumerable. There are certain skills that are needed to provide exceptional customer service. This article will go over the top ten customer service soft skills.
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List of 10 Exceptional Customer Service Soft Skills
The must-have soft skills needed to remain exceptional in customer service are; empathy, emotional intelligence, stress management, proactivity, clear communication, patience, flexibility, the desire to improve, coolness, and persuasiveness. Without further ado, let’s talk about every one of them.
Empathy is the ability to see and feel how the customer feels. Here, you understand your customer’s emotional state and rationally take action to solve the problem.
The importance of empathy in customer service cannot be overemphasized. It’s the one skill every service person should have. If you have this skill, you’ll be able to hear the unsaid, easily prevent conflict, build trust, and even correctly predict customers’ next move.
To show empathy, you’ll need to listen carefully to their issues and try to place yourself in their shoes. You need to stay positive in your responses, use replies like ‘I’m happy to help,’ I’m sorry about the issues you are facing, and I promise to get to the root of this… ‘. When customers hear sentences like this, their agitation reduces, and they will cooperate with you.
2. Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, as well as recognize and influence the emotions of those around you. The term was first coined in 1990 by researchers John Mayer and Peter Salovey but was later popularized by psychologist Daniel Goleman.
Over the years, emotional intelligence—also known as EQ—has evolved into a must-have skill. Research by EQ provider TalentSmart shows that emotional intelligence is the strongest predictor of performance.
As a customer care representative, you must keep your emotions in check.
3. Stress Management
Managing stress is an essential job skill for a successful customer service professional. Typically customer service representatives experience burnout from two sources: 1) repetitive routine requests and 2) frustrated customers. The combination can lead to stress unless reps manage their responses well. The following are stress-busting ideas to help keep calm and maintain perspective.
- Don’t be a sponge for customer frustration.
- Remember, the angry customer is nice and has temporarily become a sheep in wolf’s clothing.
- When customers are frustrated, their behavior is a reaction to unmet expectations.
- When you start your shift, agree with yourself that you’ll stay in control of the calls and in control of your mood.
- Keep a healthy work/life balance.
- Remember that stress has a physical component.
What is productivity without proactivity? I had a serious problem with this in my first job after school. My team lead would sometimes feel like roasting me, lol. But that’s by the way.
In customer service, you need to be proactive to be exceptional. Just as you are an employee of the company, you are also the customer’s advocate, and you must create a balance between both. Never criticize your employer before your customer, and fight for your customer before your employer. Always follow up and give feedback to your customers. If you promised to get back to them, don’t fail.
5. Clear Communication
When your sentences are clear and precise, you have a high chance of winning that angry customer again. Customers love to talk to customer service agents with strong communication skills. No unsatisfied customer wants to struggle to listen to an agent. If you’re pragmatic and sound clear enough, you’ll put your customers at ease.
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How do you feel when you call a call center or walk to a customer service point with a service or product problem and notice that the customer service personnel is impatient with you? This is what happens when you are impatient with your customer.
“Patience is a virtue” in customer service. Exercise patience with that customer, even if he’s not on the same page with you, and makes you repeatedly repeat yourself. Please don’t lose it. You can give him a reference to a manual and promise to call back later. You also need to exercise patience with customers who want to start with the story of their lives instead of going straight to the point. Just a moment of patience can save you a lot of stress.
Autopilot is wrong in customer service. Don’t try it. Don’t think about it. That customer called in because he didn’t want to talk to a bot.
Flexibility is the ability to respond to the demands of customers based on their circumstances. Flexibility also includes your ability to stay updated on changes in the system and pass the information to customers. Nothing is constant, so you need to learn from the changes in the system and customers. When customers come to you to express their dissatisfaction, you need to note those that are reasonable and those that aren’t.
Flexibility allows you to treat customers as humans and make them feel comfortable with you. You have room to change the flow of communication and direct the customer to the solution.
8. Desire to Improve
As a customer service professional, you always desire to learn from mistakes and improve. You also need to get updated on the company’s policies, products, and service guide.
If you make a mistake on the job, it’s fine. Don’t let it get to you. I remember, six months ago, new staff in my office made a mistake on the job. We all joined hands and corrected the error, but she felt bad. I saw it written all over her. So I had to bring her close and make her understand that even the MD is not perfect.
The main point is, are you willing to be better? If you make a mistake with this customer and the customer gets you pissed, leaves, or cuts the call angrily, will you transfer the anger to the next customer to take a cup of water?
Take courses to improve your game. Ask questions and listen carefully to the answers. Be open to learning from anyone, including customers and junior staff.
Coolness in customer service is your ability to keep your cool when talking to agitating or annoying customers. To keep your cool, you must always remember that you are a professional at work. Never take things personally.
To keep your cool in customer service, you need to pay attention to the customer, personalize responses like calling them by their name, and empathize with them. Listen to customers because you want to understand their plight and apologize when necessary. When maintaining a calm tone of voice, helps you stay cool with an angry customer.
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Persuasiveness, in other words, “luring,” is a deliberate act of influencing someone to take a call to action. Salespeople are among the best persuaders. It runs in their DNA. But it is becoming sacrosanct in customer service today. Persuasiveness helps you turn problems into solutions with ease. If you want to provide exceptional customer service, you have to be persuasive. There’re key factors needed in persuasion.
1. Listen More: To successfully persuade your customer to follow your steps, you must first listen to what they are saying. Listening is crucial to exceptional customer service. When you listen to customers, you gain their trust.
A customer who trusts that you are on the same page with him will listen to you and do whatever you ask.
2. Strategically focus on the customer: The sole aim of customer service is to satisfy your customer. When you want to persuade a customer, your words should focus on their needs, not yours. For example, say, “Philip, I understand that you need…”
Customers feel more comfortable when they feel satisfaction is the conversation’s focus. I’m sure you, too, feel happy if you’re a customer and your satisfaction is a priority.
3 Keep it simple: Nobody wants to talk to a customer service agent and becomes more confused after talking to the agent. Please keep it simple. When you want your customer to go through certain routines, use simple action words that your customer can understand. If they don’t understand you, repeat yourself or start all over; otherwise, your customer will get agitated and won’t want to listen to you anymore.
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Here you have the Exceptional Customer Service Soft Skills. I hope you found what you were looking for.