While our Toronto office space blog series on customer service – including  What Makes Good Customer Service and Exceptional Customer Service? – is a good start, you need to learn more about providing better customer service to your clients. You could take a seminar, webinar or attend a workshop on customer service, but one of the best places to start is by finding tips and resources on the internet on websites like About.com. One article there about relationship marketing is called the Ten Commandments of Great Customer Service. Or, you could start with the more simplified KissMetric Ten Commandments of Customer Service and keep it simple with its infographic.

As you begin developing customer service strategies for your company or organization, one of the key things you need to set in place is a way to measur your your customer service standards that you expect you and your staff to follow when dealing with clients. Some ways of doing this include clearly stating your customer service commitments to your clients on your website or other marketing materials, then conducting surveys that ask your customers about their experiences at your business. You want to ask clients questions about employee attitudes and abilities as well as the speed and efficiency of service they received. Most importantly, keep the type of survey questions simple enough so that the customer can give you answers that do not require too much work. Another way of measuring customer experience is to hire a company that employs mystery shoppers that interact with your business anonymously and assess your level of customer service. A mystery shopper will help you get a true grasp on the level of customer service being offered.

One of our office space for lease Toronto tenants suggested that another great way to improve customer service experiences is to take a page or two from the companies who consistently rank in the top 25 companies for providing excellent service. You may not be able to implement all of their strategies and techniques. But you can start by reviewing a list of  the 25 Companies that Provide the Best Customer Service according to TalkDesk.com and look for some of the common strategies that these companies implement in their own ways. Many will call them different things and have their own buzzword to describe them, but what is more important is how they use them to keep customers satisfied.

After you start seeing the common strategies within the top customer service approaches, you should also look at some of the worst customer service companies and be sure that you have not modeled your customer service strategies on these failing concepts. Large companies can afford to learn from their customer service mistakes, but small and medium-sized companies cannot. However, you can learn from the failings of those large organizations and not repeat the same errors that they made. Basically, try other approaches.

When and if you feel like taking a webinar, seminar or training session on customer service that is held by a third-party company, be sure to do your homework. In researching training sessions (especially free seminars and webinars) be sure to look into who is behind the information and what their track record is – because you do not want to follow the practices of someone who does not have concrete evidence that their program has worked for their attendees. The other thing to look at is online reviews of the webinar, seminar and training you are looking at. You want to see positive feedback on other third-party websites and not just the official website. Also, research any online or in-classroom seminars and the motivation of the program being offered – because you do not want to waste your time taking the training only to find out that it is just a high-pressure sales pitch for a product or service the seminar provider is offering.

The most important thing to remember when developing your organization’s customer service policies is that (just like any other business policy you set up) you need to continuously and consistently review your customer service policies and procedures to ensure they are still relevant and meet the needs of your customers. More importantly, keep up and try to follow the customer service trends in your industry, but also in the industries or your vendors and those that the average consumer looks to for customer service excellence.