Customer Service 101Sandra Drum, Public Information Officer Gloria Vazquez, ESL Coordinator March 8, 2012
Front Line Communicators You are the Key!Does your school/department roll out the red carpet for everyone who comes in contact with your school?
Customer ServiceRespectful & Responsive Service=Student Success and Public School AdvocatesThe atmosphere of any school is what the customer says it is.
Educational Excellenceis only possible in an environment whichpromotes service and delivers excellence
Who are your customers? Colleagues, parents, teachers, students,volunteers, senior citizens, business persons, community members, faith-based partners Expectations are the same – Excellence!!
A Front Line Check List: Tips for Success
What do your customers want?•Friendliness•Understanding and Empathy•Fairness – Just & impartial treatment•Control – Customers need to feel they can have animpact on the outcome•Options & Alternatives – other avenues available forthem to get what they seek•Information – Customers need & want informationabout policies and procedures
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR OFFICE PERSONNEL1. Students and parents are the most important people in any school.2. Students and parents are not dependent on us; we are dependent on them.3. A phone call is never an interruption of our day; in fact, it is one of the reasons we have a job.4. A parent does us a favor when he/she sends children to our school; we are not doing him/her a favor.5. A parent is part of our business, not an outsider.
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR OFFICE PERSONNEL6. Parents are not cold statistics; they are flesh-and-blood human beings with feelings and emotions like our own.7. A parent is not someone with whom to argue or match wits.3. Anyone who calls or visits our school is deserving of the most courteous and attentive treatment we can give.4. A student is the life-blood of every school. Each student matters.5. Without students, schools close.
Front Line Communicators & Customer Service•We only get one chance to make a great first impression.•Whoever answers the phone or greets “guests” only getsone chance. The only thing important when you answer aphone is the person on the other end of the line.•Think about your best – and worst experience withcustomer service (phone or in person)•Zappos•Hilton
Front Line Communicators & Customer Service “Top 10 Tips”10. Take an interest in each customer by offering yourfull attention.9. Greet every visitor with a smile.8. Answer all calls with a pleasant greeting.7. Speak with strength & clarity. Be heard by thecustomer but not by others.6. Choose clothing & accessories that project yourprofessional image.
Front Line Communicators & Customer Service “Top 10 Tips”5. Thank a customer for waiting.4. Be familiar with procedures, services & othernecessary information.3. Speak well of co-workers without being defensive.2. Respond with urgency.1. Maintain composure – without exception!
Tips for all…•Answer phone within 3 rings.•All phone calls or messages returned within 24 hours.•Check your e-mail at least 2x daily.•Reply to e-mail with 24 hours (when appropriate).•When visitors enter your work area, visual contact is made within 5seconds.•When visitors enter your work area, a smile and oral greeting within30 seconds.•Respond to customer concerns within 24 hours and solve theconcern as quickly as possible.•Follow up with customer within one(1) week after the concern hasbeen resolved.
Tips for dealing with a customers’ language barrier:• Be aware of your body language.• Slow down, but don’t shout.• Show without so much tell.• Be patient.• Maintain your sense of humor.• Learn a few phrases in your customer’s language.
Resources for dealing with a customer’s language barrier:• Bilingual staff at your school• District-wide Spanish interpreter, Merary Richardson Office: 252-451-8521 Cell: 252-567-3746 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org• ESL Coordinator, Gloria Vazquez Office: 252-462-2483 Cell: 252-382-1126 E-mail: email@example.com• Google Translate http://translate.google.com/• Omniglot: Common phrases in many languages http://www.omniglot.com/language/phrases/welcome.htm
Telephone Basics: Brochure and pocket guideFor ANYONE answering the phone:•“Good morning, Englewood Elementary School. This isDeborah speaking (or Ms. Ladd). How may I help you.”•“May I put you on hold?”•“Thank you for calling.”•When they say “Thanks for your help” answer “My pleasure”(or something similar).•If you need to transfer them to someone who you believe hasthe answer to their question, make sure they have your nameand phone number so they can call you back if they can’t reach the person you recommended.
What to Say (and what NOT to say!) Replace With• “I don’t know.” • “I’ll find out.”• “No.” • “What I can do is…”• “That’s not my job.” • “This is who can help you...”• “You’re right. That stinks.” • “I understand your frustration.”• “It’s not my fault.” • “Let’s see what we can do.”• “Calm down.” • “I’m sorry.”• “Call me back.” • “Where can I reach you?”• “Sit down over here.” • “Make yourself comfortable.”• “We can’t do that.” • “This is what we can do.”
Respectful and Responsive Service Standards When you are on the phone WHAT’S IN WHAT’S OUT• Answering the phone within 2-3 rings • Immediately placing the caller on hold• Projecting a pleasant tone of voice • Transferring a caller without being• Stating your name and office in the sure the recipient can help greeting • Giving up before the caller’s request• Returning missed calls within 24 has been fulfilled hours• Offering options to help solve a caller’s problems• Setting an out-of-office message with alternative contact names.• Providing warm transfers
Respectful and Responsive Service Standards When you sending an e-mail WHAT’S IN WHAT’S OUT• Responding to e-mails within 24 hours • Using all capital letters in emails – this• Answering senders questions within is the equivalent of yelling 48 hours • Using “text talk” – no way. OMG!• Acknowledging requests and providing timelines for resolutions• Projecting a helpful and pleasant tone in written communications• Using proper business writing format• Fully identify yourself and school• Setting out-of-office message with alternative contact names
Respectful and Responsive Service Standards When you are speaking face-to-face WHAT’S IN WHAT’S OUT• Greeting visitors immediately – both • Failing to acknowledge visitors parent AND the child! • Sharing exasperation with visitors• Organizing your area • Forgetting that many visitors are not• Maintaining updated phone familiar with the layout and scope of directories, directions to our district schools/offices and information about • Saying “I don’t know” your region • Failing to help visitors and not• Maintaining composure with the connecting them with someone who guest, regardless of the situation can• Offering guests something to read if they must wait
IF A CALLER IS UPSET: Use “LEAPS” with the emotional caller to vent•L-Listen: allow the caller to vent•E-Empathize: acknowledge the person’s feelings•A-Apologize when appropriate, even if the problem is not yourfault. You can say, “I am really sorry that this has happened” andmean it.•P-(Be) Positive•S-Solve: suggest/generate solutions that you can both agree onand/or ask what you can do to help and, if reasonable, do it! If not,find a compromise.
Front Line Communicators You are the Key!•Hear a rumor? Contact your principal/supervisor•Relationships. Relationships. Relationships!•Beauticians, Barbers & Bartenders•Caring for our guests is the number one priority ofCustomer Service….•Front Line – 1 chance to make a GREAT firstimpression
Front Line Communicators Our Promise – NRMPS We promise to:•Always make you feel welcome.•Always respond promptly to any need you might have.•Always work to help you find solutions.•Always be approachable.•Always serve you cheerfully.•If, for any reason, you believe we have broken our promise,please remind us immediately. After all, a promise is a promise!
Thank you for your attention!Please let us know how we can be of assistance.Sandy Drum, 462-2509, firstname.lastname@example.orgMary Ann Moss, 462-2523, MAMoss@nrms.k12.nc.usGloria Vazquez, 462-2483, GLVazquez@nrms.k12.nc.us