Customer Service Presentation Delivered at 2015 SQA Client Conference

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August 03, 2015

In a room of clients and auditors interested in quality management systems, where does customer service come into play? Dave Murray of the DiJulius Group, a consulting firm dedicated to helping organizations achieve world-class customer service, delivered the keynote address and an education session on customer service at the 2015 SQA client conference. “Quality management systems are in place to satisfy customers,” said Murray. “All too often, organizations do not include the customer in the initial business equation.”

The keynote address, “Customer Service Revolution,” called on attendees to consider and evaluate their current customer service model. Murray’s first piece of advice: customer service must start with leadership. Leaders must consider the customer in all business planning and take time to develop a quality training program, while employees learn soft skills and how to communicate with clients/customers. World-class service organizations also take the time to understand their customers, and have their employees understand what it is like to be in their shoes. Empathy is a powerful tool in service.

The education session, “Secret Service-Customer Service,” focused on building a world-class internal culture to positively contribute to an organization’s bottom line. “Your customers will never be any happier than your employees,” said Murray. A successful internal culture starts with hiring the right employees, and there are several key indicators job interviewers can look for during the hiring process. The right employee makes eye contact, speaks positively of their experience and the position and engages naturally during the interview. Hiring for attitude can often deliver aptitude through good training. In addition to hiring the right talent, research shows the relationship between an employee and their direct supervisor is typically the most important factor in productivity and tenure with an organization.

It is also important to celebrate employees and create a platform for sharing good news, opportunities and challenges. FORD, which stands for family, occupation, recreation and dreams, is a helpful acronym to remember for building relationships with employees and customers. Organizations can gain tremendous benefits from taking the time to understand what is important to employees and customers. “The best marketing we can have is happy employees; people want to be part of something great,” said Murray.