6CUSTOMER SERVICE COMMUNICATION ANALYSIS
Customer Service Communication Analysis
Good customer service entails politeness, professionalism, promptness and personalisation. However, the video featuring Owen Swanson and Tiffany Barbazano presents poor communication behaviours on the part of the customer service representative. The poor communication behaviours are presented right from the start of the communication. The customer service representative appears to be disengaged in his role; he does not pay attention to the client and jumps on to conclusions before listening to the client. His style of welcoming the client is also questionable. In addition, from the beginning, the communication lacks rapport building capacity, respect, empathy and active listening. The customer service representative is seen focusing on his personal activities in the middle of their interaction with the client. Drawing from the concepts of rapport building, active listening, empathy and respect, this essay assesses how poor communication behaviours affect the customer service relationship. The customer service representative communication behaviours and those of his colleague damage the customer service relationship, customer retention and loyalty and overall business performance.
Building and maintaining rapport is the bases of good communication in customer service. Rapport entails an understanding and harmonious relationship and is considered as an extension of establishing positive impression. According to Lane (2011, p.215), developing rapport with clients influences the overall desk performance. Successful firms place a lot of value in establishing strong rapport with their clients. When no rapport is developed, customers’ retention and loyalty is negatively affected. With respect to rapport building, the customer representative lacks the capacity to build rapport. He fails to be genuine with his verbal and visual behaviours especially when he asks the client if she would be interested in a cup of tea. More importantly, the customer representative lacks professionalism and promptness in dealing with the customer. He demonstrates lack of personalisation where he keeps confusing the client’s name. This affects customer loyalty given that customers develop loyalty with people who understand them on a personal level. Rapport and relationship building are among the most essential role of customer service representatives. This is because rapport building lowers complaints and helps in retaining customers, hence business sustainability and profitability.
Active listening is essential in customer service. Gibson (2013, p.159) asserts that active listening involves listening with ones whole body and mind rather ears only. Active listening requires putting ones feelings aside while attempting to comprehend what the customer is saying. With regard to the video, the customer service representative assumes to know what the client wanted after she spoke the first few sentences. He rushes to give her loan forms while she had already filled them the previous week. In this respect, the customer senses lack of care from the side of the customer service representative. Active listening is also paramount to rapport building. It allows one to listen out for the client’s name and utilise it respectfully during the conversation. Evidently, the benefits for active listening surpass the benefits of speaking. Active listening facilitates determination of the emotional state of the customer, development of trust and helps the customer service agent to respond in a manner that appreciates the sense of urgency of the customer.
Empathy is an essential element in dealing with customers and delivering quality service. According to Bates (2011, p.180), empathy is the capacity to understand other people and take an active interest in their concern. With regard to the video, the customer service representative does not demonstrate empathy even after the client tells him why she urgently needs the loan. Notwithstanding understanding the client’s urgency, the facial expression, body language and the response of the customer service agent do not show empathy. The customer service representative does not care to go beyond factual details and become engrossed in the customer’s feeling world. In addition, the customer service representative employs a rude tone of voice that include volume hostility while his colleague throws a crumpled loan form that belongs to the customer on the desk right where the client is sited. The approach towards the client is not right, particularly, with regard to empathy, and it prompts customer dissatisfaction. The customer service representative lacks the capacity to relate to the customer, make connection and understand customer’s needs.
Poor customer service demonstrates lack of respect towards customers. Customers seek a mind-set of trust and respect in customer service. As a result, customer service representatives are required to address customers with calm, dignity and respect. According to Peter and Garber (2004, p.14), respect in customer service entails listening and acting responsibly to the needs of the client as well as treating the client with kindness and dignity. With respect to the video, the customer service representative fails to listen to the client, uses rude tone, displays a bad attitude to the client and lacks kindness towards the client. Evidently, the lack of a respect attitude is hurting to the client’s feelings and emotions, and it is this attitude that makes her to demand to talk to the manager.
Poor communication behaviours negatively affect customer service. These communication behaviours affect the loyalty, retention and trust of customers towards their service providers. More importantly, poor communication behaviours such lack of respect, empathy and active listening jeopardise the relationships between customers and their service providers. Poor communication behaviours also affect the performance and sustainability of a business because when customers become dissatisfied, they tend to shift to firms that better care for their needs. Fernandez (2014, p.224) asserts that poor communication is one of roadblocks to establishing successful businesses because it affects every element of business operations. Poor communication behaviours affect customer satisfaction and instigate complaints that negatively affect the business image and reputation.
Customer service entails taking care of the needs of customers by delivering and providing professional, high quality and helpful assistance and service before, during and after attaining the needs of the customers. While good customer service meets the expectations of a customer, boost customer loyalty and retention besides improving sales, bad customer services instigate complaints, customer dissatisfaction and jeopardise customer loyalty, trust and retention. The video demonstrates poor customer service that leaves the client’s needs unmet, instigate complaints and taint the image of the firm.
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