Posted by: joannabrandi | November 6, 2009

We CAN Change the World

According Journalist Emily Yellin (author of “Your Call Is (not that) Important to Us”) we, in the field of customer service have the chance to change the world by doing little things that mean a lot. We can change the way we relate to the public and the emotions we create with good design, follow through and a strong value system.

Admitting the soft skills are the hardest things, Emily, who has traveled all over the world to talk to people in call centers and their customers told wonderful stories of companies that are finally paying attention to the details of business that matter to customers. From recording an initial greeting for a FedEx employee to help conserve her energy on each call, installing a shelf in bank branches at Credit Suisse in Zurich for people to put their backpacks, to redesigning forms that are too complicated to complete, companies are beginning to look at what they can do to make the customer – and the employee experience better.

Emily – a former NY Times Journalist approached the study of customer service with rigor and concludes that there is great power in doing little things. An eye opening moment came when she discussed a Jet Blue class on dealing with upset customers that she attended. Although no one would ever say to a customer  You’re stupid, I’m not going to help you, I don’t care, Shut up or You’re lying that’s what a customer hears when we tell them things like:

You were told to be at the airport 90 minutes before departure

I’m not authorized to do that

This is not our fault

Ma’am – you keep interrupting me

Emily believes changing those interactions are important because minor indignities are the seeds of the bigger things and that companies that address these seemingly small issues can make a profound change.

She’s come up with a term – Karma Footprint –for the impact service has on the world.

She believes companies have a responsibility to put that best foot forward and that what we put out into the world matters. With our focus on creating better customer experiences we can make the world a little better.

You KNOW I agree with that, been saying it for over 20 years. Thanks Emily for helping us spread the word. Caring Is contagious and we all have the power to make a difference.

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