The three staples of customer service: variety, answering questions and trust
What an average day looks like for our colleagues in customer service? Charline, Yuri and Magelien agree wholeheartedly: “No two days are the same.” But eventually it all boils down to a single purpose: assisting the customer to the best of your ability.
The three colleagues each work in a different division at Unilin and have a different job description in customer service. In Internal Sales Charline guides customers through the ordering process, whereas After Sales Assistant Yuri helps them with administrative and logistical problems and installation queries. And Sales Assistant Export Magelien mainly deals with delivery issues.
Nevertheless, the customer’s concerns are the same in all cases. And the drive to help their customers is something that Charline, Yuri and Magelien all share.
For Charline the customer relationship is the most enjoyable aspect of her job. “You build it over the years, like the relationship with colleagues in other departments.”
For Yuri it’s the combination of technical knowledge and customer centricity. “Getting to know the products down to the smallest detail and learning new things is one of the aspects I like the most. Our products keep evolving so it’s important to pass on accurate information to our customers. And no two days are the same because the questions and potential obstacles the customers face change day by day.”
Magelien really enjoys the versatility and the daily unsuspected twists and turns. “It’s a cliché but no two days are the same. I can make all the to-do lists I want for the next day but I also know I’ll have plenty of other fish to fry! When that happens it’s a matter of setting the right priorities. Fortunately our superiors give us the trust and the autonomy to plan and schedule our own work day.”
Charline: “I try to adopt a meticulous and proactive work method. I also give a great deal of attention to transparent and professional communication and I think along with our customers to offer them excellent service. Of course, my 13 years of seniority are a pretty important asset as well (laughs).”
Yuri is the junior of the three but he also considers this an advantage: “My eagerness to learn is my greatest quality! By keeping up with innovations and products I am better able to help customers. Half-hearted answers or leaving customers out in the cold is not done in my book. We also field complaints in our department and that means that customers can be pretty harsh at times. That’s part of the job, of course. It’s important to always communicate in a professional, courteous and proper manner. And most of all, you should never take things personally. I have no trouble working with many different profiles and types of people and that’s necessary because After Sales is a link that connects many departments.”
Magelien cites her flexibility and listening skills as prime assets in her job. “I’m a good listener by nature - when I’m not doing the talking, that is (laughs). That’s definitely a plus in my job. Listening to and empathising with customers is crucial to build a good rapport. Even if the customer is wrong. Being kind and compassionate reassures the customer and it makes it easier to assess the situation and find a solution everyone can live with.”