For My Own Personal Growth.......

TheSimpleLife

Grumbler in Training
Joined
Sep 6, 2004
Posts
7
From
California
I am new to this site...although I have heard much about it over the years. I am the "middle-man". I am not a framer....I am not a supplier. I am a in-house customer service representative. Yes...The person you sit on hold for...
shrug.gif

I have worked in this business for several years and have come to know both sides fairly well.

What I am hoping to gain from all of you is positive insights....suggestions..on how I(and maybe others) can improve interaction between both sides of this business and maybe give a little insight as to what WE....the middle men...go through daily.

I know I am only (1) in a sea of many.....but I am more than willing to pass on all the information I can gather to my co-workers.

Thanks...................
help.gif
 

Dave

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jun 11, 2004
Posts
13,355
From
Edwardsburg, MI
I have been impressed with most of my phone customer service reps with their friendliness and willingness to help. You put the personality on your companies daily and to a degree, even more than the sales rep who walks through my door. A lot is learned about a company by how their phone reps treat people and handle any problems, often on the spot, that may arise.

I have been especially impressed with all of LJ's reps ability to pull up my account immediately without asking account numbers, etc. It's almost like they recognize my voice and I haven't been doing the purchasing from them for that long a period.

Nelson's replacement policy regarding probelms with orders is an example of customer service excellence. Even if it was my fault their ability to respond as they do is appreciated. (If you are not aware of what I'm referring to, ask your rep.)

I don't mean to single out any companies to promote them particularly, but these are two examples of the "family feeling" I get from most of my suppliers.

What you do on the other end of the phone is of vital importance to us framers and I do hope you get treated with the upmost respect and gratitude by both your customers and the companies that employ you.

Dave Makielski
 

Kit

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Aug 31, 2000
Posts
2,513
From
Rochester, MN
It's always nice to meet the person on the other end of the phone line.

Welcome to the Grumble.

Kit

PS PULEEZE don't play Bobby Goldsboro muzak when you put me on hold.
 

Dave

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jun 11, 2004
Posts
13,355
From
Edwardsburg, MI
Few more comments/suggestions to even better serve us...

Always read back orders even when we seem impatient with it.

Alert us to any specials that may be available.

If we are just short of hitting a better price level, free freight or other benefit, please make sure we are informed.

Thanks.

DM
 

Charles Kirton

Grumbler in Training
Joined
Sep 7, 2004
Posts
5
From
South Africa
hey folks
Recently taken up "box" framing as a hobby and was hoping some folks with knowledge of the topic could give me a few pointers and possibly crit my work. Any takers???
Charles
 

TheSimpleLife

Grumbler in Training
Thread starter
Joined
Sep 6, 2004
Posts
7
From
California
I appreciate the suggestions, Dave and Kit. I know that throughout our training, we tell our c/s reps to be thorough with the customer....repeat the company name, shipping address and especially the order itself. The concern with this kind of thoroughness, however, is the time factor....a 5 minute conversation may turn into a 7-8 minute conversation(maybe longer). Time on the phone seems to be one of our(as well as other companies) main complaint..especially during the busy holiday season.

I enjoy getting to know my customer's too. It makes, even a hostile conversation..a little smoother if you are familiar with who you are speaking with.

I will definately share these comments with my fellow co-workers!!! :D
 

Ron Eggers

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Jul 6, 2001
Posts
16,932
From
Wisconsin
Originally posted by Charles Kirton:
hey folks
Recently taken up "box" framing as a hobby and was hoping some folks with knowledge of the topic could give me a few pointers and possibly crit my work. Any takers???
Charles
Charles, welcome to The Grumble. I'd recommend you start a new topic with your question. You can do that by clicking on the "New Topic" button at the top of the page.

Then you'll need to explain what "box" framing is.

Welcome to you, as well, On-Looker. I once called a Very Large Distributor That Everyone Knows and asked for customer service. I was told, "We have no customer service here."

I've laughed about that ever since. This particular company has generally good customer service but that department is not housed at the distribution center I happened to call.
 

Bill Henry-

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Aug 17, 2002
Posts
20,895
From
Boondock Bowerbank, ME
Business
Retired from the grind
On Looker,

When the (hopefully) rare situation arises when you have to apologize for something, don’t get chippy, make the apology sound sincere.

I have a customer service rep who always sound like Maxwell Smart when she says, “sorry ‘bout that, chief”. I seethe every time I have to talk to her.
 

HannaFate

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Posts
10,688
From
Corrales, New Mexico
I know the customer service person doesn't have much control over this, but could you tell your boss that ads for the company on the hold music are annoying.
I am already sold on your company, I don't need that. Something telling about sales would be okay.

Sincerity is the key to good customer service. Once you can fake that, you've got it made!
 

Rick Granick

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Resource Provider
Joined
Jun 30, 1999
Posts
20,560
From
Cincinnati, OH
I agree with what Dave said above. You are the personality of the company, and can make doing business with that company a pleasure or a pain. Friendliness, good humor, and efficiency are a good combination of qualities for this. Also, companies that have empowered the phone reps to make decisions about dealing with retailers' problem solutions or special needs are especially nice to deal with. It's those companies that simply take care of the problem without the need to ask higherups then call back that really earn my respect, gratitude, and repeat business. (They also tend to be the companies with the fewest problems anyway.)
Thanks for your interest in participating on the Grumble. It provides a chance to get some feedback to our suppliers (one, anyway) about this vital link in the business chain.
thumbsup.gif
Rick
 

Baer Charlton

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Joined
May 24, 2004
Posts
21,029
From
On FB
Hey On-Looker, thanks for stepping into the light and asking.

Having sat in your head-phones for a while, I can appreciate the Rock and Hard space you're coming from.

Banfield The Pet Hospital, did a $100,000 study about "customer experience". They found that the "first 5 seconds" made up 90% of all customers experience level. There was even a woman who brought in her 22 year old poodle to be put to sleep. She wrote that her experience that day was one of the most <u>positive</u> experiences she had ever had at a vet clinic. She happened to have been met by the vet while in the parking lot. He was coming in an hour late because he overslept. He carried the dog in and helped with the injection and held the lady's hand. Two months later, she asked if he would come with her on a Sunday to the Humane Society to adopt a new child. He did.

It's that first voice and that first hello. . . sometimes it can just make my day right. Sometimes the other. And it will never get right.

baer
 

Meghan MacMillan

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 22, 1999
Posts
2,017
From
Baltimore, MD
Welcome, On-Looker.

I took phone orders for a couple of years. I have come to the defense of the people on the phones more than a few times on these boards.

From your end the biggest positive step you can take is to be as thoroughly informed about every product anyone can order from you as is reasonably possible. When I call and ask if this particular widget can be used with a metal frame I am pleased if the c/s rep can tell me something that isn't read directly from the catalog.
 

ERIC

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Dec 31, 2001
Posts
1,852
From
New York's Hudson River Valley
Business
Newburgh Mercantile
Most of the time I have had excellent customer service from my vendors/suppliers.

The only thing that bugs me is the rare times that there is a lot of background noise that makes it hard to be understood. Or when a co-worker interupts, and the person I am speaking to is replying to them without first excusing themselves or putting me on hold for a second.

Not so much lately, but last year it seemed everyone was getting headsets. Great, but they are noisy (pops and thumps) and if they are not positioned right I can't understand what they are saying on the readback.

Ditto's on all the kudos listed above!
icon21.gif
 

Janet L

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Apr 9, 2001
Posts
2,458
From
Clayton, NC, USA
Please make sure that your CSR can speak English. I have no problem w/anyone from another country moving to the US and working. But, when I call to place an order w/a company and the person answering the phone keeps mistaking 13 for 30, that really creates some big problems.

Thanks for being concerned enough to want to know how to better serve your company's customers. You may also have some great advice for us as to how we can make YOUR job easier.
 

TheSimpleLife

Grumbler in Training
Thread starter
Joined
Sep 6, 2004
Posts
7
From
California
I really appreciate all the great responses...and just to let you all know... I printed the pages and will be presenting them at our next managers meeting on Friday. I will be asking our CSR's if they have any concerns they would like for me to post in the future for some feedback.....so to JanetL....I think I will have some questions/comments coming your way soon.

Thanks again to all....and keep the comments coming.
 

DB

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Joined
Feb 7, 2001
Posts
1,067
From
NH
I'm jumping on a little late, but here goes. I'd say 90% of my experience with CSR's has been positive, and I second everything posted so far. To add:
1.Please make sure the on hold music is not too loud!
2. On that same vein, make sure YOU are not too loud!
3. If we seem extra picky and repeat everything two or three times, it's because we have had the bad experience of someone not listening. For instance, if we have special shipping instructions or need our chops wedged, repeat it back so we know you heard us.
4. Don't assume everyone knows all the lingo. A new employee may be calling in their first order and not know what you mean.
5. If you are taking care of a replacement order for a shipment that was somhow wrong or damaged, PLEASE read the original invoice thoroughly. If the original order went out next day air, so should the replacement! If the original order had wedgelocks, so should the replacement! If the original order had a 3/16" allowance, so should the replacement!
6. If we are calling to check stock on an item and your computer is reading a low amount, I don't mind waiting if you call down to the warehouse and call me back so you are positive the item is there. We wouldn't ask if we weren't desperate, so we need to know for sure that you have it.


I hope you get a raise for this...the extra effort proves you are a consciencious worker and I for one am grateful.
 

CharlesL

PFG, Picture Framing God

In Memorium

Rest In Peace



Joined
Apr 9, 2001
Posts
7,255
From
Clayton, NC
Don't play anything by Narvel Felts in the backround, either.
 
Top