Did you know that 90.2% of consumers consider themselves more brand-loyal today than they were a year ago?
The report also states that 39.4% of consumers are likely to spend more on a product they are loyal to, even if there are cheaper options elsewhere.
52.3% of consumers will also join a rewards program for a brand they are loyal to, according to the study.
These stats are certainly impressive and exciting, but the real questions customer service managers and reps should ask themselves as a result of the study should be: What increases customer retention ratings for my organization?
What about an effective customer service coaching program that is unique to your organization’s goals and customers’ needs?
The way customer service reps interact with customers is so important; so, in this post, we are providing 10 steps to create an effective program so you can get closer to the results you want.
1. Assess where you are as a customer service team
Be honest about what areas you need to improve upon to get you from point A to Z!
2. Gather information from your reps
Understand where they think they’re doing well, where they’re actually doing well, and how they can improve to become more effective as individuals and as a team.
3. Gather feedback from your key customers
A mistake that businesses can easily make is leaving the customer out of the conversation when it comes to organizational development.
This, of course, is a huge mistake, as the success of your business is partially (and strongly) reliant upon their support and loyalty.
Get feedback from key customers. Incentivize surveys to make the process more enjoyable for them. Their feedback is invaluable to your success, and should always be considered as such.
4. Develop a program that leverages your reps’ strengths and addresses areas for development and improvement
As your team may change throughout the years, this process may need to be altered. Created a strong structure to start your coaching program, but leave the details open to flexibility.
Address the needs of your team and customers as your market changes.
Be proactive with your program’s design, and responsive to shifts in demand, whether these shifts are being pushed internally or externally.
5. Know your goals, and create a path to achieving them
If you don’t know what your goals are, how will you create a path that navigates to the finish line?
Don’t guess. Prepare and plan for success. Outline the process of reaching your goals, and don’t be afraid to alter your path when/if need be.
It may be a process of trial and error with creating (and editing) your steps …
The first time you create a program, you might not get it right, but there is strength in admitting to mistakes and valuing them as opportunities to learn and develop.
That’s how we all move forward in life!
6. Be flexible
In case we haven’t already made it evident, you need to give your program some breathing room.
Leave it open to flexibility. You will likely need to adjust it as you go.
Allow your program to evolve with your team. Don’t be afraid to make changes when it’s necessary.
Trust us – at some point, it will be!
7. Create tools to enhance the coaching process
Standardize it. Use coaching forms, call checklists, cheat sheets, and list daily priorities.
Leave the details open, but the structure straightforward.
Personality differences should be the only variations expressed with the execution of your program.
8. Train managers and coaches on how the process works
Clearly explain the benefits, goals, and projected outcomes. Train them on the process so they can carry it through with reps during coaching sessions.
Additionally, you will want to address any questions and concerns right away among managers and coaches.
Without their support and ownership, reps are unlikely to inherit the program. They typically follow suit with their manager(s) and coach(es).
9. Reward success
When a program is executed well, encourage the process.
Incentivize it, whether it be by providing reps a gift card when they achieve a milestone or sending out a company-wide memo congratulating them.
Read the room, or, in this case, your team. Be creative with your incentives. Do something they would like as a reward to make it worth their while.
Be affirmational and proactive when they achieve.
10. Share results with your team
For managers, sharing results helps your entire organization, not just your department, see the bigger picture.
It encourages the process and pushes your business process forward.
It may also open the dialogue for more ideas to be shared to make your process even better!
Learn more about creating a strong and effective customer service coaching program when you watch Ledgeview’s on-demand webinar, “Creating a Successful Customer Service Coaching Program”.
Discover the Ledgeview advantage. Learn more about our Customer Service Consulting Services here.