Dealing with support services can be tiresome for your customers. They often need the problem fixed here and now—only to get it resolved within hours or even days. Just think about it: the average support response time is 36 times slower than customers want it to be! Disgruntled customers can quickly become ex-customers, so satisfying their needs is a must.
But many companies are confused about how to do it right. If you are looking to improve your customer service, here are some essential customer service tips that will help you train your agents.
Software or Soft Skills
Using the right software to handle incoming inquiries is vital. When you have a reliable help desk in place, your staff completes tasks faster and works more efficiently. But software is not a universal remedy.
Quality of support heavily depends on your reps’ soft skills, especially their grip on human psychology. According to Salesforce, customer service professionals trained in empathy performed twice better than untrained ones. So, it is highly recommended to develop not only your agents’ product knowledge but also their soft skills.
Do you want to learn how to design a great training plan for customer service staff? Follow these instructions.
Customer Service 101: Train a Perfect Support Agent
A perfect support agent has a calm and friendly manner. They use a respectful tone of voice, respond to customer requests quickly, and are ready to help even in the most complicated situations. How can you grow such an agent? The answer is below.
Training Communication Skills
Communication has more to it than just words—it’s also about how you listen and react. Active listening, patience, strong non-verbal skills, and appropriate language are all signs of a good conversation partner and team player. How do you train these qualities in your agents?
- Put together a list of common questions customers ask, and check if your staff knows how to answer them.
- Give them an example of good customer service to show how emotional intelligence (EI) works in practice. Demonstrate how experienced employees operate and zero in on their EI skills.
- Use customer service role-playing scenarios during onboarding. Make sure to include hands-on cases built around specific issues and triggers. It will build up your employees’ confidence.
Promoting Workplace Discipline
By structuring and planning their daily tasks, your employees can get everything done faster. The secret to being organized is knowing how to prioritize, multi-task, and manage your time. How can you help your agents become more self-disciplined?
- Explain clearly and in detail how you handle customer inquiries. Outline the work process and give guidance on how to prioritize the tasks.
- Introduce your performance tracking tools and help desk software to assist your reps in planning their daily routines.
Training Critical Thinking and Creativity
Critical thinking is a pathway toward more creative and independent decisions. The support agents with strong critical thinking skills can solve even the most challenging cases independently, letting their managers focus on their own tasks. However, workplace rules may put certain limits on their creativity.
- Training should be job-specific. Try offering unusual cases from your practice that require a creative approach.
- Share customer feedback among all agents and departments. Ask your employees to analyze it. This training will teach them to generalize and draw conclusions.
Keeping it Friendly
If you treat your customers in a friendly and understanding manner, they will mirror your attitude. Friendly interactions lead to a trusting relationship that builds confidence in your business and brand.
- Remind your staff to thank customers regularly. We all want to feel appreciated. By taking the time to thank people for doing business with you, the agents show that they care about the relationship and will go above and beyond to make customers happy.
- Make sure your agents are familiar with the concept of customer care and its mission—to nurture an emotional connection between the brand and the clients.
- Engaged agents are friendly agents. Keeping agents engaged is a different story, but here are a few customer service tips: actively solicit employee feedback, let them make decisions (which tech tools to employ, for example), and provide ongoing development opportunities.
To Sum up
Designing a training program for customer service staff requires a holistic approach. You will need to improve your reps’ critical thinking and communication and problem-solving skills, teaching them to be polite and friendly along the way. Self-organizing skills are crucial too. A well-designed training guarantees that your customer support agents will represent your company at its best.