Is Customer Service a Right Brain or Left Brain Function?


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Often when speaking about delivering exceptional customer experiences, I, like most speakers, tell stories. Often our signature story is about some remarkable customer experience where someone has gone above and beyond to create a memorable experience and everyone is left feeling like that is the pinnacle of success.

This of course makes for an interesting speech but doesn’t convey the full story.

When discussing the art of creating exceptional customer experiences we often focus on the feelings and relationship we create with our customer. Did we smile, were our answers helpful, did we show genuine concern and empathy for their situation? Did we create a personal connection and adjust our interaction to meet their needs? Did we go above and beyond to create a memorable moment? These are all examples of the language that is often heard in speeches, seminars and workshops.

These are also all characteristics often referred to as being right brain functions; creative, imaginative, emotions, empathy, feelings. And they are certainly essential to the successful delivery of an exceptional customer experience. They are the sexy bits that make for great stories.

They are also elements of the customer experience that are very dependent on the person and the situation. In other words, they are not consistent for all customers and therefore less likely to be repeatable and scalable.

However, there is another side of customer service that is less often the focus of discussions — yet equally important. That is the behind the scenes, left brain function activities; analytical, logical, precise, organized, repetitive, detailed, sequential. The elements that are part of the customer experience mapping we often do.

In truth, these are the foundation of any successful customer experience. Without a well thought through, repeatable, efficient customer experience process — the person delivering it will have to deal with a poor customer experience baseline and will constantly have to go above and beyond to make up for the inevitable disappointment that customers have.

It is like bailing out a boat with holes in it. Lots of work, but no prospects of long term success until the holes are patched.

My Perspective: Don’t focus your efforts on the people, emotional side of the equation, without also investing equally to ensure that your processes are as efficient, reliable and repeatable as possible. Use both sides of the brain and look for opportunities to build processes that build a positive experience of every customer, every time.

Then you have the opportunity to create one of those sexy, signature stories speakers love to use — because you are building on a strong foundation of a customer experience that works — and your people then have the opportunity to take that experience to the next level.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Bill Hogg
Bill Hogg works with senior leaders to inspire and develop high performance, customer-focused teams that deliver exceptional customer service, higher productivity and improved profits. Sought after internationally as a speaker and consultant, Bill is recognized as the Performance Excelerator because of his uncanny ability to create profound change and deliver extraordinary results with the most demanding organizations.


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