Teaching Your Teens Great Customer Service Skills
Now that your teen has himself established in a growing business, you’ll want to help him grow his business through superior customer care and service. These days a face to face or online business is definitely built on trust and relationship building and that means caring about and for your customers. Discuss some of the options below with your child and come up with a customer care plan of action now so you’re prepared and doing things from the start.
Obviously the most important way to show your customers you care is to be trustworthy. Sometimes this is harder than it seems. Showing up on time, being true to your word and doing your best are some simple ways to prove that you can be trusted. There will be times, however, when circumstances require that you can’t be on time or keep your word. Usually these circumstances are beyond your control – illness, car emergencies, etc. You can still show your trustworthiness by communicating often and well with your customer. Sick and can’t show up? Call (or have someone call for you) your customer and explain the situation. Reschedule immediately if possible or find a replacement (a sibling, dependable friend or even your parent if they’re available). The key is to let your customer know that this is out of your control. Communication is key.
Consistent and quick follow up is another important part of customer service. A day or two after your job is completed, call your customer to make sure to their satisfaction, answer any questions and schedule the next appointment if appropriate. Use the phone, not email, for this important relationship building part of your business. This phone call might also be an appropriate time to solicit referrals for other potential customers but only if you have a tremendously satisfied customer and only if it’s a natural part of the conversation. Don’t make that the goal of your follow up call.
Thank you notes are a wonderful way to show your customers you care. Dropping a quick thank you note in the mail immediately after servicing your customer is quick, easy and thoughtful. It’s amazing what getting something in the mail will do to help build your relationship and ensure further business with this customer. You can purchase a stack of note cards or post cards at any retail store or make it even easier by using an online card service like Send Out Cards. Online services like this allow you to input your customer information once and even send out a series of cards scheduled in advance to save you time.
Find out about your customers and recommend them to other people who might need any services they provide. For instance, if you’re mowing lawns for the local pet store owner, recommend his store to other customers or friends who own pets in your area. Does your pet sitting client work at a hair salon? Let your friends know about her services. Ask your customers for their business cards and fliers so you can network for them too.
Of course, these quick tips just touch the service of providing your customers with the care and service they deserve. Keep their needs in mind and really care about them and many of these ideas will naturally happen. Your business will grow as a result, too.