Improve your customer service: Give your business the rollaboard test

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Here’s a customer service consulting secret that won’t cost you a penny, assuming you have some old luggage lying around. Give your business the rollaboard test.

It’s a simple test you can do with a single piece of rolling luggage.

Let me explain.

This morning, holiday notwithstanding, I was sitting in a Philadelphia airport club lounge watching a fellow business passenger roll in (meaning he walked in, his luggage rolled in) to stock up on Wifi and crackers, like the rest of us, before a day of travel. Well-oiled though his luggage may have been, it still made the distinctive, loud sound that every rollaboard makes on a hard surface: rat-a-ratta-ratta-tat.

You could hear him coming from literally 30 feet away.

At least I could hear him. The three employees behind the reception counter acted as if they had heard nothing, doing whatever they were doing until he was right in their faces and could no longer be disregarded.

At which point, regardless of how pleasantly they reacted to his arrival, it was too late for them to be truly hospitable.

What is the great constant of business travel? Loneliness. And the receptionists at the counter had an opportunity to make the arriving passenger feel a little less alone by noticing his presence before they were forced to. And, they had an amazingly audible clue–the closest possible thing to a cowbell– to help them do so.

Now, not all businesses greet their customers in person, and not all customers carry noisemakers that signal their impending arrival. But in almost any business setting–online, over the telephone, or in person–there are ways to make customers feel at home before you get down to doing the technical part of interacting with them.

And concentrating on these moments, these opportunities to anticipate the arrival of your customer, can make all the difference. Making it clear that you are here to serve the emotional needs of your customers rather than to ignore those customers until their presence is forced on you is one of the differentiators that make all the difference.

So that’s why I suggest you ask yourself: Would your company pass the Rollaboard test?

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Micah Solomon
Micah Solomon is a customer service consultant and trainer who works with companies to transform their level of customer service and customer experience. The author of five books, his expertise has been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, NBC and ABC television programming, and elsewhere. "Micah Solomon conveys an up-to-the minute and deeply practical take on customer service, business success, and the twin importance of people and technology." –Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder.

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