Customer service training is an essential part of any business. It can be difficult to see the value of these kinds of training sessions, especially when you’re so focused on other aspects of your company.
But, customer service training can play a key role in ensuring that your company is successful.
If you want to help your employees understand how to deal with customers more effectively, then it’s time to start thinking about how customer service training can help you and your business succeed.
What Is Customer Service Training?
Customer service training is the process of teaching your employees to better serve customers. This training is often given to customer service and support personnel, but everyone in your company can benefit from learning to better serve your customers.
The idea that this type of training is only for customer service reps or support techs is a common misconception. Anyone who deals with customers in any capacity can benefit from customer service training.
Why Is Customer Service Training Important?
Customer service training is important for organizations because it provides employees with the proper techniques and best practices for dealing with customers. Training your customer service team members allows them to communicate with customers effectively, handle problems that escalate, and successfully solve their problems.
You can try to hire people who are naturally great at providing customer service. But those people are few, far between, and in very high demand. So your best bet is to provide training that turns your current customer service reps into phenomenal service providers that benefit your brand.
It's possible to do that without formal training. Mentorship, for example, can make a big difference in customer service quality. And peer-to-peer learning is a great supplement to other types of training.
But formal training delivered well, will help you get faster and more consistent results. Customer service is hard, and many companies don't care about it. High-quality customer service training means you'll be able to differentiate yourself from those companies.
Benefits of Customer Service Training for Organizations
A customer service mindset is more than just knowing how to deal with an angry customer or talk someone through troubleshooting an app. It's about better understanding and serving the people that your company helps.
When your employees share this mindset, you're in a powerful position. You've built a company around a culture of service, and that's going to set you apart from your competitors.
Here are some ways that customer service training can be beneficial for your company:
1. Develops the Skills of Your Employees
The first and most obvious reason why you should implement customer service training. If your employees develop new skills, then they’re more likely to be successful in their jobs.
This can also help to reduce employee turnover, which can be expensive for your company. If your employees don’t have the skills they need to interact with customers, then it’s likely that they’ll be less effective. This could result in customers having a negative experience with your brand. Ensuring that your employees are well trained can help to reduce the likelihood of this happening.
2. Builds Company Culture
Company culture is one of the most important aspects of any business. It can help to define the type of employees you hire, the way they work, and the type of customers you attract.
Having a strong company culture where employees feel like they matter can help your business to thrive. One way to build this is through customer service training.
In order for your company culture to improve, your employees need to feel valued. Customer service training can help to achieve this. When your employees feel like they matter, they’ll be more likely to stay with your company.
Customers will also be able to tell when your company culture is strong. They’ll be able to tell that your employees are valued and appreciated. This can help to attract more customers to your business.
3. Helps You Find Out What Customers Want
Most companies want to attract more customers, but they’re not entirely sure how to do this. One of the best ways to attract new customers is to find out what they want.
If your business already has customers, then it can be beneficial to conduct customer surveys. If you want to improve your customer service, then it’s a good idea to ask your customers what they want.
4. Can Increase Marketing Efforts
Another way that customer service training can help marketing efforts is that it can help you to close more sales. When your employees are more confident and know exactly what to say, they’re more likely to close sales.
In order to do this, they need to understand your products and what customers are interested in. Customer service training can help your employees to learn about your company and products. It’s likely that these employees will have more success in closing sales.
Exercises Included in Customer Service Training
What does customer service training actually involve? There's a huge list of possible answers, but here are some of the most common things you'll see in training:
Delivering outstanding customer service requires that reps have the right mindset. It's hard to remember, for example, that customers are real people who are frustrated because something isn't working how they expected.
We've all been in that situation, but at the end of a long day when you've been dealing with angry customers, you can slip up. These exercises help customer service reps develop a mindset of service. The kind that builds loyalty and value. Many customer service frameworks talk about empathy. These are the exercises that help develop it.
Customer service training can involve a lot of skills practice. Most of them fall under the umbrella of communication skills. Here are some examples:
- Active listening
- Positive language
- Basic behavioral psychology
Different training emphasizes different skills, but they usually come down to good communication skills. Because of the wide variety of skills that trainers focus on, there's also a lot of variety in the methods that they use to teach these skills.
In many cases, you'll find a combination of lectures, partner activities, group activities, and roleplaying (we'll talk a bit more about roleplaying in a moment).
This is a big part of customer service training. Customer service reps need to know a lot about the products they're selling, both from a sales and a support perspective. If a customer would be better served by a different product, your reps need to be able to pitch it to them. If a customer calls with a problem, reps need to be able to troubleshoot it.
The level of product training may depend on the experience of your customer service reps. For example, customer service training for new reps might include an overview of your product lines. An intermediate training might go deeper into troubleshooting your most popular products.
This is probably what most people imagine when they think of customer service training. An instructor pretends to be a customer on the phone and a rep has to deal with a service situation. These often include tough problems like angry customers, irrational demands, and requests for discounts.
Roleplaying is a method of contextual learning and helps solidify the concepts that trainees have learned in previous lessons. Keeping the right mindset, explaining products, and using communication skills are key to getting the most out of roleplaying.
Interestingly, some trainers are moving away from roleplaying because it can be a stressful experience that makes it hard to learn. Other systems like Kolb's experiential learning are becoming more popular.
Like any other part of a business, your customer service team has to know how to use the tools of the trade. Customer service software has become complex and powerful, letting reps access a lot of information and resolve problems quickly. But only if they know how to use it.
Training on customer service tools ensures that reps can take full advantage of the resources they have at their disposal.
While roleplaying will likely include dealing with complaints and conflicts, there are other factors that reps need to be trained on. Here's a small sample of questions that roleplaying may not answer:
- If a customer asks to speak to a manager, who should the rep go to?
- How much authority does the rep have to solve a customer's problems?
- Is the rep authorized to offer discounts or gift cards as a means of apology?
- Are there standard procedures for dealing with particular complaints or conflicts?
Reps need to know these things to handle their day-to-day responsibilities.
While these are common inclusions in customer service training, no two trainings are alike. Your training might include all of these things, a selection, or none of them. There may be company-specific topics, team-building exercises, and all manner of other things covered in the training.
Implement Customer Service Training Today!
Customer service is an essential part of any business. While it’s important to ensure that your company has a strong product to offer, it’s also essential to have great customer service.
Employees who know how to interact with customers can help your business succeed. If you want to help your employees provide better customer service, then it’s time to start thinking about implementing customer service training.
If you want your business to be successful, then you need to ensure that your customers are happy. This can be difficult if you don’t know how to interact with customers properly. Thankfully, customer service training can help your company to succeed.