With so many banks I visit listening to sound, perfectly commercially sensible advice from management consulting groups and hurtling towards a digital future, I am left wondering whether, in the rush to save money on distribution, banks are missing a trick.
The reality I see, and it's backed up by report after report, is that, if we fast forward 5 years, most banks will have the same, or similar back office systems, digital service offer and products. Therefore, surely, these organisations should be concentrating on their brand and the experience this delivers to customer.
It is Richard Branson who says that companies need to focus on their staff and in doing so, they will win... because engaged and happy staff will serve customers better.
This past week, I have experienced this fist hand, where customer service excellence has won the day. In Dubai, where I live, we have two Uber type services, one is Uber, the other is called Careem. I had a bad experience with Careem, complained and immediately received a refund on my journey. Quick, professional and really customer focused. The company realise that by focusing on their staff and empowering them to make the right decisions for their brand, they will win. And they have... I am writing about my experience and now the 15,000 of you out their who read my blog know. Careem = Customer Service Excellence.
Here are my 10 tips for creating a culture of customer service excellence:
Ensure your staff understand your brand, it's mission, vision and values and what it means to them in their everyday work
Put your people first and empower them to make decisions in the best interests of the brand
Do not de-sensitise your connection with customers by over using digital channels
Make every interaction with customers meaningful and personal to them
React quickly to problems
Remember to celebrate successes
Be prepared to say sorry - People understand we are all human and sometimes we make mistakes
Be natural - do not read from scripts. Know your business and speak with authority on it
If you're not sure, ask someone for help. Customers also understand this and will accommodate it
Listen to everything your customer says and take time to properly understand it before responding