ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Customer Service - Quality is Not Enough

Updated on December 18, 2017

A Case for Survival

The importance of providing excellent service in today's ever-changing, competitive marketplace cannot be underestimated. Customers have become even more discerning and demanding and now that social media has revolutionised Word-of-Mouth, poor service is exposed almost immediately and can cripple a company fast.

Do what you do so well that they will want to see it again and bring their friends. Walt Disney

The quality of customer service can be affected by cumbersome policies, poor systems, staffing levels, etc., but understanding what customers really need is the quickest and easiest way to ensuring you stay in business.

Two Different Types of Needs

Customers judge service by two different types of needs - Practical and Personal. Quality in today's fast-changing, technological market is a given. If a company does not have a quality product or service, it will be difficult for them to stay in business. Excellent service however, is the factor that makes the difference. Today's customers are not only seeking quality to fulfil their needs for a product, they are also seeking reliability, trust, attention, and the respect they deserve.

Profit in business comes from repeat customers, customers that boast about your project or service, and customers that bring friends with them. W. Edwards Deming

Practical Needs

Businesses need to be able to provide products and services that meet their customers’ specific needs.

Personal Needs

The fulfilment of Practical Needs is not enough to keep customers satisfied. A Personal Need refers to how customers like to be treated and spoken to, and especially how they feel about how they have been treated.

Meeting only one of these needs is not good enough. Imagine going for a haircut and the assistant keeps you waiting; is blunt and impersonal and then (if you hadn’t walked out yet), gives you an excellent haircut. They’ve met your Practical Needs but have completely ignored your Personal Needs.

Consider the opposite - As you enter the premises you are greeted with a smile; they remember your name; offer you a cup of tea; maintain friendly eye-contact; listen carefully to what you want, and overall make you feel very welcome. Then they give you a ‘nightmare’ haircut. Both Practical and Personal Needs must be met.

Quality in a service or product is not what you put into it. It is what the client or customer gets out of it. Peter Drucker

What Do People Mean?

People often refer to service as being good or bad.To understand what people mean when they refer to the level of customer service received, think back to a time when you, as a customer, received excellent service and make a list of what the person did or said that made you perceive the service as excellent.You will probably be surprised at the absolute simplicity of the actions taken.Typically, people have said:

  • He greeted me.
  • She said she would call me and she did.
  • He said they would deliver by four and they did.
  • He took time to listen to me.
  • She thanked me.
  • They were cheerful and reasonably quick.
  • He looked up the address for me.
  • He took the time to explain the details to me.
  • She showed me how it worked.

Considering your personal experience of good customer service, ask yourself how you think the person who served you felt about their job.Almost always the answer is positive.It’s amazing how many just don’t see the connection between providing excellent customer service and creating job satisfaction and high morale.

It is not the employer who pays the wages. Employers only handle the money. It is the customer who pays the wages. Henry Ford

Poor Service

Now repeat the process but this time with a poor customer service experience. List the specific actions that were, or were not taken when you received bad service, in other words, describe what a person did or saidthat made you think the service was bad. When you have completed your list, gauge the impact on the company by answering the following questions:

  • How did you feel after the transaction?
  • Have you gone back to that organisation?
  • Have you told other people about your experience?
  • Have you posted any details of your experience on Facebook or on a Review Site?
  • How do you think the person who served you felt during and after the interaction?
  • Do you think that person enjoyed his or her job?

A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all. Michael LeBoeuf

So What Is Customer Service?

Having examined the impact of good and bad service, it’s important to understand what excellent customer service is and how to provide it. You can measure everything you and your staff do, including your systems, paperwork, policies, etc., against the following definition:

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. Bill Gates

Are You Ready?

Select your customer-facing staff carefully. Train them in good interpersonal skills and ensure that all senior personnel model the required behaviours.

The specific actions which exemplify good service are almost always relatively simple actions that are quick and easy to perform. It would be worth your while to make a list of simple actions or ideas that you could put into practice to ensure that you provide consistently good service to your customers. Even better would be to ask your staff to suggest and commit to these actions.

You have a much better chance of achieving good service values if you treat your staff the way you would like them to treat your customers. Russ Baleson


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)