Monday, July 11, 2011

customer service orientation

i rant about not getting good customer service especially in retail establishments. i figure that in this day and age of extreme competition, any firm in the service industry should have good customer service as a minimum guaranteed experience, from the lowliest carinderia to the poshest resort.

but fabC lobster tony once made a statement that made me think. the front liners of a lot of service firms, especially in retail, are usually rank & file personnel who barely make minimum wage. is it reasonable for us to expect them to know 'good customer service' innately if they may actually not have experienced such? when one shops in the tiangges of divisoria and quiapo, does one expect to be accorded 'good customer service'?

my understanding of his point: it would be unwise to expect employees as front liners to innately be 'customer oriented'. to always have that ready smile, to be friendly and approachable. that is something that they may not experience regularly. hence, it is up to the establishment owner to train his/her people well in giving good customer service. and if possible, allow them to 'experience' good customer service so they would know what that feels. and if they felt good about being the recipient of a good service, then they would probably be able to incorporate the idea into their own jobs and task and provide good customer service as well.


the green breaker said...

I agree with what you had to conclude.

Anonymous said...

I think that the customer service we get is really just a reflection of how these front-liners are treated by their emoployers.

Tony said...

You hit the nail on the head. We are privileged in more ways than one to understand and more importantly experience good customer service.

I always try to remind myself this especially when I am in the department store and the sales person gives me a less than enthusiastic response to a request.

Why would they, since:
1) they are contract workers who probably won't work there anymore in 3 months (hence no sense of pride in their work).

2) they are paid the same minimum wage no matter what their performance is.

So I choose the sales lady and department that I buy from. How? I choose the ones that look bored. I engage them in a short conversation (pretending that their inputs matter and that I have not made up my mind yet). They are so thankful for the break in the monotony of just standing there and looking at nothing that I usually get good customer service.

This also applies to most other establishments... For crowded restaurants and shops? I don't expect good service, that is why if they do treat me well under such stressful situations, I'll be sure to tip heavily. :D

Chop Sticks said...

I definitely agree on this. This is so true. I used to be one of those front liners who's barely earning minimum wage at a mall-based retail shop.