Customer Service : Career Success Through Customer Loyalty

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  • Edition: 4th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-01-01
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
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KET BENEFIT: This book ties together the best information from trade books and textbooks, and then adds a clear and usable process for developing the kinds of skills, attitudes, and thinking patterns needed to win customer loyalty. The coverage includes positive attitude, customer turnoffs, dissatisfied customers, customer expectations, customer loyalty, winning telephone techniques, and more. This book is for employees and managers of customer service departments and human resource training departments.

Table of Contents

From the Authorp. xii
About the Authorp. xviii
Know Why Service Mattersp. 1
Introductionp. 2
No One Succeeds without Loyal Customersp. 3
"Customer" implies an exchange of valuep. 3
Customers Have Many Namesp. 4
Customer Relationships Can Become Partnershipsp. 4
Positive Word of Mouth Gets and Keeps Customersp. 5
The impact of E-Commerce on word of mouthp. 6
The Good and Bad News about Customer Service-The Cost of a Lost Customerp. 7
Calculate the terrible cost of the lost customerp. 7
Appreciate the cost of the lostp. 8
How much will it cost to replace these customers?p. 9
Understand how lost customers mean lost jobsp. 9
Some Key Changes in the Diverse Nature of Customersp. 9
Increasing customer diversityp. 10
Age issuesp. 10
Globalizationp. 12
Work-life balancep. 12
Translating Slogans and Good Intentions into a Strategyp. 12
The Ultimate Goal: Developing Customer Loyalty for Lifep. 13
Customer loyaltyp. 14
A Final Thoughtp. 17
Assignment Portfoliop. 17
Summary of Key Ideasp. 17
Key Conceptsp. 18
Reviewing the Factsp. 18
Applying the Ideas: Interview Service Providersp. 18
Notesp. 20
Use Behaviors That Engage Your Customersp. 23
Behavior and Personality Factors That Please Customersp. 24
Fifteen Individual Behaviors Can Convey Personalityp. 25
Greet customers like guestsp. 25
Break the icep. 26
Compliment freely and sincerelyp. 26
Call people by namep. 27
Talk to customers with your eyesp. 27
Ask often "How am I doing?"p. 28
Listen with more than your earsp. 29
Say "please," "thank you," and "you're welcome"p. 29
Reassure customers in their decision to do business with youp. 29
Smilep. 30
Use good telephone techniquesp. 30
Reach out and touch themp. 31
Enjoy people and their diversityp. 31
Maintain a positive attitude about sellingp. 32
Watch your dress, grooming, and workplace attractivenessp. 33
Six Organizational Behaviors That Convey a Customer-Centered Culturep. 33
Consider your company's appearance and groomingp. 33
Get customers to interact with your organizationp. 37
Correspond regularlyp. 37
Use hoopla and funp. 38
Reward the right actionsp. 38
Stay close after the salep. 39
A Final Thoughtp. 40
Assignment Portfoliop. 40
Summary of Key Ideasp. 40
Key Conceptsp. 41
Reviewing the Factsp. 41
Applying the Ideas: Does Behavior Influence Customer Loyalty?p. 41
Applying the Ideas: Hooray for Waffle Housep. 43
Notesp. 45
Apply Your Best Listening Skillsp. 47
The Difference between Listening and Merely Hearingp. 49
What Contributes to Listening?p. 49
Internal elements affecting listeningp. 49
Environmental elements affecting listeningp. 49
Interactional elements affecting listeningp. 51
Listening Habits to Avoidp. 54
Faking attentionp. 54
Changing channelsp. 55
Listening only for the factsp. 55
Interruptingp. 56
Positive Steps to Better Listeningp. 56
Solicit clarificationp. 57
Minimize the number of gatekeepersp. 57
Try counter-attitudinal advocacyp. 57
A Final Thoughtp. 60
Assignment Portfoliop. 60
Summary of Key Ideasp. 60
Key Conceptsp. 61
Reviewing the Factsp. 61
Applying the Ideas: Discover Your Listening Stylep. 61
Notesp. 64
Use the Telephone Right for Good Servicep. 67
Know the Benefits and Drawbacks of Telephonic Communicationp. 68
Action Tips for Identifying Telephone Use Attitudesp. 70
Check your phone use attitudesp. 70
Contact a companyp. 70
Avoid unnecessary call screeningp. 71
Action Tips on What to Do and Sayp. 72
Answer promptly and be prepared to handle callsp. 72
Use courtesy titlesp. 72
Thank people for callingp. 73
Smilep. 74
Be sure the conversation is finished before you hang upp. 74
Handle the upset caller with tact and skillp. 74
Action Tips on How to Express Yourself on the Phonep. 75
Keep your conversation tactful and businesslikep. 75
Speak clearly and distinctlyp. 76
Speak naturally and comfortablyp. 76
Do not let "dead air" happenp. 77
Keep a constant flow of informationp. 77
Keep callers on trackp. 77
Action Tips for Efficient Use of the Phonep. 78
When Calling others, asks "is this a convenient time to talk?"p. 78
Take messages cheerfully and accuratelyp. 79
Make your greeting message efficientp. 80
Learn to use your phone's featuresp. 80
Plan your outgoing calls for efficiencyp. 81
Don't let the telephone interrupt an important live conversationp. 82
Consistently work to improve your telephone communicationsp. 82
Call Centers: Building Relationships One Phone Call at a Timep. 82
What a call center isp. 83
How many call centers are there?p. 83
A Final Thoughtp. 84
Assignment Portfoliop. 85
Summary of Key Ideasp. 85
Key Conceptsp. 85
Reviewing the Factsp. 85
Applying the Ideas: Try Rewording for a Better Tonep. 86
Applying the Ideas: Hear the Differencep. 86
Notesp. 89
Use Friendly Web Sites and Electronic Communicationp. 91
What Is Web-Based Customer Service?p. 92
Self-serve common answersp. 92
Delayed answersp. 93
Live answersp. 93
Self-serve personalized answersp. 94
Acknowledge Cost Advantages for "Webifying" Customer Servicep. 94
Recognize Disadvantages of Web-Based E-Servicep. 95
Apply Five Action Tips for Avoiding E-Service Problemsp. 96
Be there and be quickp. 96
Make site navigation simplep. 96
Respond quicklyp. 97
Provide communication alternativesp. 97
Pay attention to form and functionp. 97
Utilize Five Action Tips for Evaluating and Growing E-Service Effectivenessp. 99
Track customer trafficp. 99
Benchmark service levelsp. 99
Teach your site to learnp. 99
Build an ongoing E-relationshipp. 99
End high for better loyaltyp. 101
A Final Thoughtp. 101
Assignment Portfoliop. 101
Summary of Key Ideasp. 101
Key Conceptsp. 102
Reviewing the Factsp. 102
Applying the Ideas: Explore the World of E-Servicep. 103
Notesp. 105
Recognize and Deal with Customer Turnoffsp. 107
Be Aware. Be Very Aware-Recognize Pet Peeves about Customer Servicep. 108
Get a Picture of What Turns Customers Offp. 109
Value turnoffsp. 110
Systems turnoffsp. 111
People turnoffsp. 114
Know That Reducing Turnoffs Is the Best Advertisingp. 115
Create Loyal Customersp. 116
The zone of indifferencep. 116
Value service recoveryp. 117
Loyalty comes from customers' awareness that service is your businessp. 117
Earn your customer's loyalty with two stepsp. 118
Listen with More Than Your Earsp. 118
A Final Thoughtp. 119
Assignment Portfoliop. 120
Summary of Key Ideasp. 120
Key Conceptsp. 120
Reviewing the Factsp. 121
Applying the Ideas: Discovering Customer Turnoffsp. 121
Notesp. 124
Get Customer Feedbackp. 125
Why Feedback Is So Importantp. 126
Feedback is a form of coachingp. 126
Complaints are valuable feedbackp. 126
Getting input at the point of contactp. 127
Commitment to Feedback Variesp. 128
What statistics reveal about feedbackp. 128
Reinforce, Don't Challenge the Customerp. 129
Be sensitive to your first reactionsp. 129
Act on Complaints in Productive Waysp. 130
Feel the customer's painp. 132
Do all you can to resolve the problemp. 132
Other Proactive Ways to Get Feedbackp. 132
Try focus groupsp. 133
Use explorer groupsp. 135
Use customer surveysp. 135
Use "mystery shoppers"p. 138
A Final Thoughtp. 139
Assignment Portfoliop. 139
Summary of Key Ideasp. 139
Key Conceptsp. 140
Reviewing the Factsp. 140
Applying the Ideas: Getting Customer Feedbackp. 141
Notesp. 143
Recover the Potentially Lost Customerp. 145
Understand the Case for Customer Recoveryp. 146
Maintain Healthy Attitudes about Customer Recoveryp. 147
Develop Your Recovery Skillsp. 149
Feel their painp. 149
Do all you can to resolve the problemp. 149
Go beyond: offer "symbolic atonement"p. 149
Look back and learn from each situationp. 150
Understand what happens if the customer is still not satisfiedp. 152
Handling the Occasional "Customer from Hell"p. 152
Be sure this really is a chronic complainerp. 152
Know what to do with this guy (or gal)p. 153
Handing a Nasty Complaint Letter or Emailp. 153
Use Human Relations Skills to Convey Appropriate Tonep. 155
People are strongly interested in themselvesp. 155
People prefer receiver-centered messagesp. 156
People want to be treated as individualsp. 157
People want positive informationp. 157
People don't like abrasive peoplep. 158
Understand the Distinction between Assertive and Aggressive Behaviorp. 160
A Final Thoughtp. 162
Assignment Portfoliop. 162
Summary of Key Ideasp. 162
Key Conceptsp. 163
Reviewing the Factsp. 163
Applying the Ideas: Recovering Lost Customersp. 163
Notesp. 166
Exceed Expectations with Valuep. 167
Define A-Plus Value: What It Isp. 168
Recognize the cost of diminished perceptions of valuep. 168
Create an Enhanced Sense of Intrinsic and Associated Valuep. 170
Intrinsic value of the product itselfp. 170
Associated valuep. 171
Seven Ways to Enhance the Perception of Valuep. 171
Build A-plus value with packagingp. 172
Build A-plus value with guarantees or warrantiesp. 173
Build A-plus value with goodness of product fitp. 173
Build A-plus value with memorable experiencesp. 175
Build A-plus value with uniqueness and shared valuesp. 176
Build A-plus value with credibilityp. 177
Build A-plus value with add-onsp. 178
A-plus value and your employeesp. 179
A Final Thoughtp. 180
Assignment Portfoliop. 180
Summary of Key Ideasp. 180
Key Conceptsp. 181
Reviewing the Factsp. 181
Applying the Ideas: Creating A-Plus Valuep. 182
Notesp. 184
Give Customers A-Plus Informationp. 187
Understand What A-Plus Information Isp. 188
Special informational demands of E-commercep. 189
Know How to Produce A-Plus Informationp. 190
Provide informational hand-holdingp. 191
Select informational media carefullyp. 191
Use Techniques That Enhance Message Clarityp. 193
Audit of your company's writingp. 193
Use some redundancyp. 194
Make key information easily accessible with graphics and iconsp. 194
Create and Support Customer User Groups and Classesp. 195
Pay Special Attention to A-Plus Information in E-Commercep. 196
Make customer support accessiblep. 196
Honor the customer feedback loopp. 196
Evaluate Your A-Plus Information Effortsp. 197
Logging common questions (FAQs)p. 197
Audit your company's communicationp. 197
A Final Thoughtp. 197
Assignment Portfoliop. 198
Summary of Key Ideasp. 198
Key Conceptsp. 198
Reviewing the Factsp. 198
Applying the Ideas: Creating A-plus Informationp. 199
Notesp. 201
Exceed Customer Expectation with Conveniencep. 203
Understand What Is Meant by A-Plus Conveniencep. 204
How to Produce A-Plus Conveniencep. 205
Give serious regard to customer time and conveniencep. 205
Consider the Use of Virtual Waiting Techniquesp. 207
Match capacity to demandp. 208
Respond to how customers perceive the waitp. 208
Use virtual queuesp. 208
Make Things Easier for Customersp. 209
Create once-and-done servicep. 210
Make doing business easyp. 210
Offer ancillary servicesp. 211
Simplify the productp. 211
A Final Thoughtp. 211
Assignment Portfoliop. 213
Summary of Key Ideasp. 213
Key Conceptsp. 214
Reviewing the Factsp. 214
Applying the Ideas: Giving A-plus Conveniencep. 215
Notesp. 216
Managing Your Time and Tasks to Reduce Stressp. 219
What Are the Causes of Job Stress?p. 220
Unproductive job stress factorsp. 220
Working conditions that may lead to stressp. 221
Five Key Skills for Better Time and Task Managementp. 222
Target your efforts on the most important tasksp. 223
Be a goal-getter, not just a goal setterp. 224
Do the constructive things firstp. 225
Foster teamworkp. 226
Avoid time wastersp. 227
Effectively Delegate (Even If You Are Not the Boss)p. 230
How delegation can go wrongp. 231
A Final Thoughtp. 231
Assignment Portfoliop. 232
Summary of Key Ideasp. 232
Key Conceptsp. 232
Reviewing the Factsp. 232
Applying the Ideas: Managing Time, Tasks, and Stressp. 233
Notesp. 235
Get Employees to Give Great Servicep. 237
Articulate a Vision: What Managers Should Do Firstp. 238
Plan a Strategy for Customer Loyaltyp. 240
Organizing Processes, People, and Resources to Achieve the Visionp. 240
Lead and Motivate Employeesp. 241
Create and Sustain an Effective Work Culturep. 242
Continuously Harvest A-Plus Ideasp. 244
Use brainstorming when you need creative ideasp. 244
Use nominal group process when appropriatep. 244
Control the Processesp. 245
Help employees set contributing goalsp. 246
Empower and Engage Employeesp. 246
Tie the Reward System to Appropriate Actionsp. 247
A Final Thoughtp. 248
Assignment Portfoliop. 248
Summary of Key Ideasp. 248
Key Conceptsp. 249
Reviewing the Factsp. 249
Applying the Ideas: Getting Employees to Give Great Servicep. 250
Notesp. 252
Recognize the Emerging Trends in Customer Servicep. 253
The Importance of "One-to-One" Personalization for Customer Service in the New Futurep. 255
One-to-one opportunities with internal customersp. 256
Social and Economic Shifts Impacting Customer Service for the Futurep. 256
Recognize changing demographicsp. 257
New Interactivity Options for Creating Stronger Customer Relationshipsp. 258
Understand That Some Things Remain Consistentp. 259
Demand for fair valuep. 260
Satisfy individual customer needs and wantsp. 260
Create promotersp. 261
Apply relationship marketingp. 261
Gain customer share, not market sharep. 261
A Final Thoughtp. 264
Assignment Portfoliop. 264
Summary of Key Ideasp. 264
Key Conceptsp. 265
Reviewing the Factsp. 265
Applying the Ideas: Recognizing Emerging Trendsp. 266
Notesp. 268
How to Lead or Participate in an A-Plus idea Generating Meetingp. 269
Indexp. 277
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