You Need to Read This!
I’ve never told folks who read our blog that you have to do something. I’ve made suggestions, recommendations and hopefully, a few thought-provoking statements. But this time, I’m telling you. You need to read the book “High-Tech, High-Touch Customer Service” by Micah Solomon.
This is a well-written, idea-packed book. Mr. Solomon divides the book into three major section:
- “Timeliness and Timelessness” is about today’s changed customer and trends in servicing that changed customer.
- “High-Tech, High-Touch Anticipatory Customer Service” discusses the need for anticipation in today’s service and how that should shape your culture, your people, and your technology.
- “The Rise of Self-Service and Social Media – and Other Seismic Shifts” helps you clearly see the need for well-constructed self-service and the essential role Social Media should play in our service organizations.
In the section on the trends surrounding our changing customers, two really stood out (Solomon writes about 6 Customer Trends). The first says, “Don’t make your customers search for information; bring it to them – and right away. Customers today expect technology that brings an experience that is easy, instantaneous, and intuitive.” The sixth trend Solomon identifies says, “Self-service is a giant trend, and companies that ignore it, pursue it reluctantly, or violate its basic laws will be left in the dust.” The solutions we provide to you (CPI customers) help you reach out and serve your customers. In reading these trends, I found myself asking how I can help you use your tools to meet these trends. I think that’s a key thing for us to work on together.
In the second section of the book, the chapters on impacting your culture and your people to deliver “Anticipatory Customer Service” are excellent. They are practical and full of realistic ideas that we can all implement in our businesses. I especially loved the section of advice on hiring your people based on “WETCO” – Warmth, Empathy, Teamwork, Conscientiousness and Optimism. You’ll have to read the book for the details behind that advice.
I could write another blog post on the third section of the book dealing with self-service and social media. (Don’t worry – I won’t!) Solomon made one particularly painful point related to self-service: “Customers need a choice of channels. A choice means they choose and you respect, their decisions.” He explains that if a customer calls and I play multiple hold messages saying you should go to my website – well, I’m not respecting the customer’s choice. Ouch – I’ve helped people do just that. He certainly helped give me a different perspective on self-service and ways to make it “anticipatory” for the customer.
Really – my summary isn’t doing this book justice. You just need to read it. After you do, let’s discuss.