Tag Archives: #customerservice

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How to give a refund, even you don’t think you should

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Have you ever had a customer demand a refund on the 29th day, after the purchase, demanding a refund… and you have a 30-day refund policy? Has one of your most difficult clients asked for a full refund after going through your program, claiming it wasn’t worth the money? How do you handle these types of situations? Unfortunately, there’s no app for that!

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Difficult customers come and come, again. Hopefully, they are a very

small percentage of your customer or client base. When customers and clients ask for a refund, it sometimes seems like a slap in the face, right? It’s like they’re saying, “You’re not good enough.” or “Your services stink!”

Don’t take this too harshly. There’s an old saying that goes, “Kill them with kindness.” Simply put… don’t get on their level of frustration and meanness. These types of people are often the same ones who almost always find something wrong with their food, customer service, etc. They almost always want a discount of some kind.

Unfortunately, these people don’t walk around with signs on their chest saying, “I’m about to do my best to make you miserable and work your butt off to please me!

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Customer Service – Comcast is a Great Example

Comcast is in the news, yet again, for its deplorable customer service. But, this customer may be laughing all the way to the bank. After your read the article about Conal O’Rourke, the poor customer service, and the lawsuit, I want to hear your input. Do you feel Mr. O’Rourke or Comcast should come out the victor in this case?

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Comcast Customer Service Reps
                          Customer Service – Comcast is a Great Example

My opinion on Comcast, after being a customer for 10+ years, is that they have a very unfriendly attitude toward customers as if to say, “But where else can you go?” It’s no wonder to me that they have so many high profile customer service complaints.

Yes, they have the fastest internet service (I am still anxiously awaiting Google Fiber to come into my area, although Comcast is making leaps and bounds in an attempt to stay in front of Google). And, yes, Comcast provides great telephone and cable service, compared to the satellite companies in our area. But, does this give them the right to shrug off providing good customer service?

I say, with every cell in my body, and with great disgust “NO!” The last, but very important part of providing good customer service (because, apparently great is not in their service description) is billing. Comcast made a whopping $2 billion profit in the 2nd quarter of 2014. You might think that Comcast could afford a top-notch accounting system that would minimize, if not eliminate, the over-billing they are too well-known for.

Conal O’Rourke’s case is based on just that… over-billing, not just once or twice, but on a continuous basis for over a year! What in the world was Comcast thinking? I’m not sure how much discretion each of their Customer Service Reps have, but wouldn’t you think that, after about two or three months, one of them Reps would bring this issue to a supervisor or someone who could finally resolve the issue? I would!

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Customer Service Is Your Business

The customer experience is ultimately what we all should be focused on. Yes, the bottom line is important, but without a positive customer interaction and reaction (i.e. selling your products or services), honestly, there’s no point in calling yourself a business.

What sparked the idea of writing about this topic, is while watching a Bar Rescue marathon, the one common factor I noticed with each bar, was the horrible customer service they each delivered. I mean people being serviced martinis in plastic cups without any vermouthSERIOUSLY?!

Bad vs Good Customer Service
From TheDealCutters’ “Customer Service” Pinterest board

Or what about the store clerk who politely, told a customer that she’d have to find the product herself because, “I’m the only one here and I’ve really gotta finish this. I’m sorry.” She was making more coffee. I felt bad for the customer, but was glad the employee was making more coffee.

Alright, serving a martini in a plastic cup… nothing else needs to be said except DON’T DO THAT! But, was the store clerk right in her response? Like I said, she was very polite. I’ve been in that situation before and I know it’s not easy but, I think the better response would have been, “If you can give me just a minute, I’d be more than happy to help you.” I think the customer would have been fine with that. Instead she left the store in a huff.

Businesses that operate 100% online have it a little bit harder than their competition in a physical location. Primarily because there are so many online businesses to choose from, offering the same type of product or service. According to Forrester Research, “45% of U.S. consumers will abandon an online transaction if their questions or concerns are not addressed quickly.”

The primary reason for this is that, there are so many online businesses offering the same products and services, consumers have, literally, thousands of companies to choose from. There are many reasons that result in the average of 80% “shopping cart abandonment” has nothing to do with your products or services. This reason is simply… no relationship. If the consumer doesn’t know you, will probably never see in person or have any type of relationship with you, there really is no obligation to stay and shop with you.

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How To Handle An Outrageous Customer Service Experience

Outrageous is the best word I could think of, to describe this particular customer service experience. Unfortunately, I had to witness this interaction. Fortunately, it wasn’t toward me! But, even so, I was truly disturbed by the offender, but equally proud of the employee who the verbal assault was aimed at.

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So, what exactly happened? While stopping to grab some coffee for myself, and a snack for my husband, Mike, I was waiting for another customer to be helped at the counter. As usual, I was listening to my music, through my earbuds, but not too loud, so if anybody spoke to me, I could hear them over my music.

I saw and heard, what seemed like offensive words and body language, and turned my music completely off. The first clear words I heard were, “Does it look like I’m laughing?! I don’t see or hear anything funny!”. The customer was irate about something, so I listened, intently, trying to figure out what happened.

The young man behind the counter had a smirk on his face, so I figured some sort of joke or comment was made that set this hostile interaction in motion. The customer continued by saying, “Man, you acting like a little bitch right now!” Before I could think, I said, “Whoa! Whoa! What the…?” I didn’t need the play-by-play details to know the customer had gone way overboard! If he was that upset by the clerk, it was time to call in the Manager. At the very least, he should have let the other clerk complete his transaction.

I left out of the store and listened to my music for a minute, to pull myself together. Upon re-entering the store, the rude customer held the door for me. I held my tongue, and gave him a short, “Thank you.” When I walked in, the two clerks behind the counter were giggling, as if what had happened was somehow amusing.

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Happy New Year!

It seems like just yesterday that we were texting and calling Happy New Year to friends and family, and saying “bye” to 2014. The days are just rolling in to one another, making a week seem like just a couple of days. Seems like we don’t have a full 24 hours in a day any more. What’s the deal with that?!

Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m determined to make and get the most out of each day… every day. There are routines I can’t get around, like working and resting, but with my other waking hours, I strive to be as productive as possible.

Thankfully, our bread-and-butter business affords me about 11 hours per day to think and “study”. I mean, what else can you do while you’re holding the steering wheel, right? Lol

I listen to a lot of podcasts… I mean A LOT! I’ve listened to 600+ hours on Stitcher alone. That’s not counting the many, many hours of YouTube videos I was watching before I found Stitcher. Now, I’ve also started listening to iHeart Radio. So much content and info, but so little time to take it all in, let alone implement what you’ve just learned.

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2014 was my first year in the online marketing world. I actually didn’t even realize I was a marketer until around June, so I’ve had a solid what… six months to try and figure it out? I didn’t even know this blog was a marketing piece, or at least it’s supposed to be, I’m told. I’ve been blogging since late 2013. I was just talking and try to find some light-hearted people to “kick it” with. I’m still learning, but loving it!

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Personal Development – The Spiritual Side, Part 3 of 3

Mind, body and spirit equals perfect wellness
Our mind, body and spirit must be in perfect alignment for us to live a well-balanced life.

This week we’ll discuss the spiritual side of personal development. This is the final post in a 3-part series and hopefully, will tie all the parts in for you. If you’re just seeing this blog post and have no idea what I’m talking about, I urge you to back track and read the first two blog posts in this series:

1. Personal Development – The Physical Side, Part 1 of 3

2. Personal Development – The Mental Side, Part 2 of 3

First, I need to make it perfectly clear that, although I am a Christian, when I say, “spiritual”, I am referring to whatever it is, that you subscribe to, that makes you move mountains. It may be religion. It may be a number of many other things. So, I’m referring to that thing. With that being said, if you are not at peace, or aligned with the spiritual side of your being, everything else in your life, mental and physical, will be off-center as well. Do you agree?

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So, what does it take to develop your spiritual side? After doing a bit of research on the topic, I found an excerpt of a book that is based on exactly what I want to relay to you in this blog post. I recommend you read, “The Stages of Spiritual Growth,” by M. Scott Peck, M.D. and Abridged by Richard Schwartz. In this section of the book, it breaks down the stages of spiritual development. I will focus on the four main stages:

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Personal Development – The Mental Side, Part 2 of 3

The mental side of personal development, some may argue, is the most important part. Many say personal development starts with the spiritual side, which we will discuss next week. Others will say that you should focus on how you look, meaning the physical side, because that will make you feel better about yourself. The better you look, the better you are perceived and received. What do you think?

Albert Einstein's Self-Esteem picture quote
A great quote by a great mind well beyond his years!

In this blog post, we will go over the reasons why developing a strong mental state of mind is a key piece to the puzzle of overall personal development. Whether or not it’s the first piece you should focus on, well, I’ll leave that up to you. The sole purpose of this 3-part blog post series on personal development, is to help you get to your true happy place. Why you are not there yet can be due to a wide array of reasons or obstacles. You may, or may not, have an idea of why that is, so hopefully theis blog post series will be of great value to you.

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We treat each other the way we do because of how we feel, and what we think about ourselves and others. If we are usually in a great mood and see the brighter side of people and situations most of the time, we tend to exhibit a more optimistic approach to conflicts, difficult situations and difficult people. My 3-part blog post, “The Personal Side of Customer Service,” is a great read to find out more about The OptimistThe Skepticand The Pessimist. It may help you understand why you feel and act a certain way, a bit better, too. If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

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Personal Development – The Physical Side, Part 1 of 3

fitness picPersonal Development has three sides: physical, mental and spiritual. In this blog post we’ll explore the physical side and see how it affects how we treat ourselves and others. Developing ourselves on a physical level may seem easy to some, but is actually hard for most. Everyday you see pictures of the beautiful models and actresses who we are supposed to resemble, right? It’s an ongoing saga. Believe me, I truly understand why eating disorders are a huge concern for the parents of teens and pre-teens. Let’s face it, We have a ton of outside forces saying we should look, act and feel a certain way.

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As the mother of a girl, I had to constantly reinforce, in my daughter, the need to look and act in a way that she was comfortable. To make matters worse, my daughter was not your normal looking black girl.n Briana is has a light complexion with red hair and no freckles. Because she looked so different for the southerners she was raised around, she was teased and picked on from daycare up to about 9th grade. The other black girls insisted that her father was white and that she listened to “white” music. The fact that she spoke “white”, meaning with proper grammar, didn’t help matters in the least bit.

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Best Practices For Setting Life Transforming Goals – Long-Term Goals

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You’ve made it to the long-term goals post… CONGRATULATIONS! Either you are actively working toward achieving your short, mid or long-term goals or you’re already toasting the great leaps and bounds you’ve made in accomplishing your long-term goals. In either case, here’s a big hi-five to you!

If you haven’t read the posts preceding this one, please click on the following links to get caught up:

Now, that we’re on the same page, let’s recap a few key points regarding goal setting:

  • Write everything down and adjust your goals as needed
  • Use the S.M.A.R.T. Goals system
  • Define your “Why” and keep it in front of you at all times

Ok, long-term goal setting may be the hardest, when you get started with your goal strategies, simply because they are set for so far away. Most people have no clue where they’ll be in 5 years. If you have or know a teenager, ask them every few months where they plan to be in 5 years. See how often it changes?

It is imperative that you break your long-term goal down. This is where your short and mid-term goals come from. Here’s an example of a financial goal: (Please remember that we are not financial experts or advisors):

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Best Practices For Setting Life Transforming Goals – Short Term Goals

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Hopefully you’re in a good habit of eating healthy and getting good exercise on a regular basis. Even if not to lose weight, just to stay in shape. I, unfortunately, am not the best eater and do not get to exercise often. Driving and riding in a truck for 20+ hours a day, makes it really hard to stay on track with doing what’s right. I try to incorporate my chair exercises while I’m driving but, keeping safety in mind, don’t get to do them but so often. So, I have created some goals that I need to start working toward. I am proud to say that I’ve already started taking baby steps toward achieving them.

I’m writing this post, for me and for you, in case getting started or staying motivated seems a bit too daunting. This is all in an effort to reach our peak state of physical health, which has a direct result on our mental health, right? Even if your goal has nothing to do with physical health, but maybe finances or parenting, I think you’ll find great value in this 3-part series on goal setting. If you haven’t read last week’s post, “Life Transformation: Developing a Pre-Goal Setting Mindset,” I suggest you read that, just so you get some advice on how and why we set goals in the first place.

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So, let’s get started with the short-term goal part of the equation. I think this is the most important stage because it’s those little wins that help keep us going in the right direction. Your short-term goals should be quickly and easily attainable. This would include changing one small bad habit, like cutting down your soda intake or trading a half hour of watching tv for taking a look at your bank statement and monthly budget. For me, I’m cutting down my coffee consumption and getting a good stretch in a couple times a day instead of a couple times a week. I’ve not completely cut coffee out, but have reduced my intake from 60 ozs to 40 ozs in the past two weeks… YEAH!!

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