A business is nothing without a loyal team to represent it. In the home service industry, it’s rarely the owner that is the face or voice that customers grow accustomed to. While customers may remain loyal to you for various reasons, it’s usually the overall team that inspires consumers to remain loyal. In many situations, the first interaction a customer has with a home service company is with a customer service representative (CSR).
From asking about a repair to simply asking for a price, customers make contact with CSRs for various reasons. Despite living in a world where technology has made it easier to bypass CSRs, most customers would rather reach out and talk to an actual person than go through the internet. For this reason, CSRs are the voice of the company, and it’s important that they are properly trained to handle this responsibility.
The quality of customer service has a direct impact on the bottom line, so owners need to invest in their CSRs to make them an asset to the business. This could equal more loyalty, higher conversion rates, higher average tickets and more excited customers. Being consistent with CSR training is the key to developing the representatives, but how you train them is just as important.
It is extremely vital to make training personalized for CSRs. Don’t simply give them general feedback or coaching about generic performance measures. You must give them specific feedback about their performance. It’s their interaction that is the middleman between selling a service and a customer going to a competitor, so give them feedback on how they are doing. Make the training and feedback about them.
One of the best ways to ensure your CSR training is more personalized is by providing open-ended discussions that leave room for more original responses. CSRs will also better retain the information compared to lectures or being told the answers without much thought on their part.
One of the best ways to create an environment that creates open-ended discussions is by doing two things: asking great questions and being creative. You can’t have an open-ended discussion if the questions you are asking don’t require thought-provoking answers.
In addition, being creative in your approach will keep the CSR engaged. To develop a training strategy, you must understand who you are training, their preferences, what they do well and their areas of improvement. Then find an interactive way to get them involved. This could range from peer feedback, role-playing activities, or simulation training. Being creative in your approach is leaps and bounds more effective than lecturing.
Efficiency Doesn’t Equal Better Training
If you are having open-ended discussions and being more personal in your approach, then the success rate of your training is going to be high. But it’s also important to realize that being successful at training individuals isn’t always efficient. Sometimes, even experienced training professionals fail to deliver impactful training because they try to rush the process. To successfully train a CSR, you must understand their individual needs to help them learn and grow, which takes time. Because of this, training isn’t always going to be a quick process, and that’s OK. It’s more important to spend time training CSRs than being efficient.
After all, they are the voice of the company, so it’s important to make a personal investment in providing them with the tools and skills they need to succeed.