Authors Donna Greiner and Theodore B. Kinni document and share the best practices in customer service from a wide array of businesses in their book.
1,001 Ways to Keep Customers Coming Back by Donna Greiner and Theodore B. Kinni Prima Publishing, 263 pages, 1999, $16.
When you run out of ideas for providing outstanding customer service, this book will bail you out. It describes, usually in 50 wordsor less, 1,001 of the best customer service practices from businesses of all sizes, places, and industries.
Loosely grouped by categories such as bundling products, guaranteeing your product or service, and rewarding your customers,these ideas will definitely ignite a brainstorm.
For example, in "Give Customers What They Want," you'll find a paragraph on Mitchell of Westport, a Connecticut clothingcompany that takes pictures of what its customers buy. It then puts the pictures in a personal album so that when new clothes comein that match that style, employees can call the customers and tell them when the clothes will be available.
You will already be familiar with the service of some companies, such as Starbucks, Southwest Airlines, and Amazon.com, but thereare many that will leave you thinking, "Why don't I already do that?"
Scouring for Stories
The authors seem to have scoured just about every resource for the best customer service stories. They quote other books andmagazines and include great quotes such as, "I am the world's worst salesman; therefore, I must make it easy for people to buy," byF.W. Woolworth, and "Revolve your world around the customer, and more customers will revolve around you," by HeatherWilliams.
Little sidebars provide specific tips, such as this quote of Stephen Tax and Stephen Brown on how to make it easy for customers tocomplain:
Hire and train people for service recovery.
Focus service goals on fairness andsatisfaction.
Remove barriers to customer complaints.
Track and respond to complaints.
This book is a valuable resource for offering great service, fixing it when it's not so good, and above all, using service to retain yourcustomers.