Conversations from the Field Customer Service that Serves the Customer

By Dave Conway, iSqFt’s President and CEO

I called my bank recently, trying to get hold of someone who could answer a pretty simple question. I’m betting I don’t have to tell you that what should by all rights have been a short and simple task turned into a Herculean effort of endurance and patience.

But banks are far from the only place you’ll get such treatment. Most large companies seem content to place their customers into a labyrinthical phone system and let you find your way through.  Maybe worse are the companies that throw up FAQs that you’re supposed to weed through in order to get your answer. It’s as if they’re saying, “The answer you’re looking for might be in here somewhere. Go find it.”

Forgive me for sounding a little curmudgeonly, but customer service is something I feel very strongly about, and while the day may come when a machine can do everything a person can do, that day has not yet arrived.

Staying connected
These blog posts are called “Conversations from the Field” for a reason. I spend a lot of my time out of my comfortable office chair and in airplane seats and in rental cars because I know there’s no replacement for face-to-face conversations with iSqFt customers and people of all stripes throughout the industry. There just isn’t.

I’m very happy to report that most people I talk with don’t care what my title is, and that’s as it should be. All they know is that I represent iSqFt, a service that–very often–they’re paying for, and all they care about is one thing: are they getting the value they expected for their hard-earned dollars?

These conversations are typically very frank, and overwhelmingly positive. That’s not because iSqFt is perfect, it’s because when our customers have a problem or a question, they can reach someone–an actual human being who knows what he or she is talking about and has the power to solve problems.

What I’ve learned
Here are a few things I know to be true:

  • Every company will make mistakes and have problems. Customers know this and are not only forgiving but even pleasantly surprised when you make things right.
  • If you promise to meet a customer’s expectations, you’ll get his money. If you actually meet his expectations, you’ll get his loyalty. If you exceed his expectations, you’ll get his endorsement.
  • In order to achieve these conditions, you must create a culture in which every single person understands the value of his or her contributions.

I don’t claim to have all the answers, and I’m not the first person to talk about the importance of customer service that actually provides service. But in light of my recent experience I guess I wanted to share my thoughts on the topic and tell you how I’ve made sure we’re putting ideals (and great ideas) into action. I hope you never experience any problem with iSqFt, but if you do, I think you’ll be genuinely impressed at how quickly, efficiently, and painlessly your issue is resolved.

-DC

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