GREAT customer service

A unique one-day programme – ‘virtual’ or ‘classroom’

We take an emotionally intelligent approach to customer service.

In our digital, ‘results now’, ‘always on’ and ‘click here’ world, it’s easy to lose the emotionally connected experience that customers want. Studies show that 70% of customers spend twice as much with organisations they have an emotional connection with, so we lose that connection at our peril. Yet more and more organisations are doing just that. Another survey shows that 59% of consumers feel that organisations have lost touch with the human and emotionally connected side of customer experience – and that number’s growing.

So, yes, it’s important that customers have their issue put right, their problem solved or their question answered – but the biggest differentiator is how the customer feels while that’s going on. Did they feel valued? Listened to? Reassured? Was there an emotional connection?

And that’s our starting point with the GREAT customer service programme. It gives a structure for an emotionally connected, loyalty-inspiring, trust-building customer conversation:

Greet – A warm welcome, building trust from the beginning: ‘I’m here for you’

Recognise needs – Recognising what the customer really needs: ‘I will help you.’

Empathise – Displaying genuine empathy and attuning to the customer: ‘I understand you’

Act – Acting with accountability and owning the customer’s issue: ‘This is what I’ll do…’

Thank – Thanking with sincerity and ending on a high: ‘I’m happy I could help you today’

How will it help?

This programme inspires behavioural change. It will help your people acquire and develop the skills they need to:

  • Warmly greet the customer – building trust from the beginning
  • Recognise what the customer really needs – through asking curious questions and really listening to understand
  • Attune to the customer’s communication preference – so that they can truly empathise
  • Demonstrate accountability and how they will ‘own’ the customer’s issue or question
  • End every interaction on a high – with a personal and memorable goodbye

Who should attend?

Anyone who has already attended the ‘GREAT customer service’ workshop.

What happens in it?

This is a very practical, interactive session. The style is very facilitative – structured explanations when needed, otherwise very conversational, with a heap of activities and video clips. As a participant, you’re never more than 15 minutes away from the next activity. You won’t be bored!

How’s it delivered?

Option 1 – Face-to-face A one-day session for a group of up to 12. The day runs from 9.30 to 4.30 with short breaks – or, with an optional additional practice session, from 9.00 to 5.00. Top quality printed materials provided for each participant.

Option 2 – Virtual The virtual option is just as interactive. Again, for a group of up to 12. Choose between a full-day version (9.00 to 4.45, with regular breaks) or run it as two half-days instead. PDF materials.

Whichever option you choose, ‘classroom’ or ‘virtual’, the approach is very facilitative and learner-centred, taking into account the needs and preferences of the group on the day whilst at the same time meeting the specified learning objectives.

Is there any pre-work?

Whether ‘classroom’ or ‘virtual’, participants will get the most from the programme if they complete a short personality styles questionnaire first. One exercise, in particular, depends on it.

Is there any follow-up?

We deliver the training and get you off to a GREAT start, so it’s down to you to embed it. But we can help you there too. We’ll give you our ‘GREAT coaching toolkit’ – a 32-page booklet for your team leaders and line managers, full of practical coaching strategies they can use in the moment, in a team meeting, or in a one-to-one.

The toolkit is easy to use and gives highly practical coaching questions and activities aligned to each skill so that your line managers can provide focused, awareness-creating, skills-building coaching as soon as your people return to their role.

Is there anything else I need to know?

Not really. But give us a call if you’ve got any questions – we’re here to help!

  • FAQ 1 Yes, we can tie the session in to your values or customer service charter.
  • FAQ 2 Yes, a ‘tailored’ option is possible and we can ‘flex’ the programme a little, if you want to emphasise a particular theme. Although we’d prefer to flex it rather than break it, so give us a call to talk through the options.
  • FAQ 3 Yes, certificates of attendance can be provided.
  • FAQ 4 Yes, there are optional modules if you want to focus on a specific issue, eg, complaint handling, resilience, telephone skills, email customer service, etc.
  • FAQ 5 Yes, there are other options for supervisors, team leaders and line managers. In particular, you might want us to give them a quick overview of the GREAT model, talk them through the toolkit and help brush up their coaching skills so they’re confident using the activities.

What’s the next step?

Give us a call to talk it through. Decide what’s the best approach for your organisation. Agree a budget. Have a chat with the trainer. Discuss the practicalities. Pick a time, date and place. Sign on the dotted line (you’re not committed until then). And, if you’ve got any questions at any point, we’re here to help – you’ve got our number!

Session outline

This is the timetable for the full-day face-to-face version of the programme, with approximate timings for breaks. Virtual delivery follows the same content and sequence but with different timings and slightly different exercises.

Pre-work: complete the Personality Styles profile

1 Welcome to GREAT customer service (9.30)

  • What will you learn? Session overview and introduction
  • Activity: GREAT Customer Service in 20 seconds
  • Why you should stop trying to delight your customers
  • Making it easy for your customers
  • What’s your experience of easy service?

2 G is for Greet (10.10)

  • Building an emotional connection and projecting warmth
  • The formula for trust (warmth + competence = trust)
  • How to inspire trust
    • Validate the customer’s feelings
    • ‘Smile from the inside’
    • Inspire confidence
  • Activity: greet with warmth
  • Activity: video clip-based discussion

BREAK (10.55)

3 R is for Recognise needs (11.05)

  • Recognising what your customer really needs from you
  • Focus on the customer, not the ‘problem’
  • Asking curious questions
  • Activity
  • TED questions (Tell-Explain-Describe) and the question funnel
  • Listening to understand and empathise
  • Activity
  • The levels of listening
  • Activity: recognise customer needs
  • Activity: video clip-based discussion

LUNCH (12:30)

4 E is for Empathise (1.00)

  • Activity: video clip-based discussion
  • Seeing things through your customer’s eyes
  • True empathy
  • Personality styles
  • Activity: attuning to your customer
  • Activity: video clip-based discussion

5 A is for Act (2.00)

  • How to demonstrate competence and expertise and so inspire trust
  • The ladder of accountability
  • Activity: accountable language
  • Activity: being accountable
  • Activity: video clip-based discussion

BREAK (3.00)

6 T is for Thank (3.10)

  • Ending on a high
  • Why a good experience needs to be a good memory as well
  • How to end on a high
    • Confirm what happens next
    • Activity
    • Thank the customer and give a personal and memorable goodbye
    • Activity
  • Activity: video clip-based discussion

7 Your action plan (4.10)

  • Prioritising which actions to take
    • What specific actions will you take?
    • By when?
    • How will you know when you’ve been successful?
  • Activity: surprise!

CLOSE (4.30)

OPTION

If you don’t mind a longer day, then start at 9.00 instead, finish at 5.00 and we’ve got time to add an hour’s ‘end-to-end’ practice session at the end of the afternoon, before the action planning. This activity can be run as ‘forum theatre’ or in trios. It’s a role-playing session, practising a common customer interaction using the GREAT Customer Service skills. A great way of reinforcing the learning!

To check that this is the right programme for you, just give us a call on 01582 463464 and we’ll be happy to talk it through with you – we’re here to help!