Give Your Support Team an Identity

By Justin Smith

Customers love and deserve great service. Brand loyalty is critical today, and one of the best ways to build that loyalty is to respond quickly and thoroughly to customers when a problem arises. Companies are always looking for ways to set themselves apart from their competition. A huge differentiator is a top-notch customer support team. One thing that can get overlooked when building an exceptional service group is generating an identity. A great service experience can grow from just a simple vision statement. A little bit of planning can yield impressive results internally and externally.

Develop Vision On Your Team

Setting up a mantra, a mission statement, a central focusing idea is a great starting point. This does not have to be a grand sweeping declaration or something that is carved in stone, to be followed blindly by all members. It can be a simple sentence that describes the experience you want customers to have. Your team vision provides a firm foundation that employees can fall back on in any situation. Acknowledge and celebrate everyday accomplishments where your vision is realized: These small wins encourage adoption of the vision and embed it into the nature of your department.

A popular example of a mantra is “WOW”. The idea is to create experiences with customers that are so memorable that they change the way that your company is viewed. The product that was purchased might fade, but the impression of the service that was received sticks around. Every point of contact is a chance to WOW the customer. 

Advertise Your Vision

Incorporate your customer success mission into your website or post it in the office. Share the idea with other departments in your company. It can be something that unites the rest of the company around your customers, and establishes a standard for the quality of work that you expect to put forth. If it is something that you truly believe in, sharing your vision will serve as a motivator for your team.

Another way publicizing your vision promotes success is that it opens you up for customer feedback. Letting customers share whether or not you have achieved your goal will really keep things in focus. Incorporate customer ideas and reactions into your vision for the optimal customer experience.

Execute On Your Vision

Once you say that you will deliver something, you will be held accountable for actually making that happen. If your vision is to deliver a memorable customer experience, then all of the systems that you set up for operation should support that. Make sure that all of your team metrics, goals, and processes align with the customer experience you want to create, and that you're hiring the right team to make it happen.

Going back to the example of delivering “WOW”, in this case the quality of interactions should not be limited by the time spent on those interactions. Helping a few customers completely rather than helping tons of customers partially aligns best with this particular customer vision. Setting an aggressive first contact resolution goal would promote the "WOW" experience and help team members understand where to focus.

A great example of vision in action come from the Virgin brand. Richard Branson is known for his commitment to great service.  Virgin Trains wants to “Make every second that you spend with us awesome.” In 2015, a customer on a Virgin Train tweeted about a stall running out of toilet paper. True to their mantra, and within minutes, Virgin Trains tweeted the customer back and set up a delivery right to his specific car. This is a standout example, made possible because Virgin was committed to making that ride truly awesome. Their customer service vision is clear and well communicated both internally and externally.

Customer service is often chaotic and unpredictable. Setting your service team up with a mission statement is one important way to ground the team and produce those ever-important and consistent “WOW” experiences for customers. 

Need help designing processes and goals that drive "WOW"? The Success League works with executives who want to unlock the revenue and retention a top performing success team will bring to their business.

Justin Smith - Justin is an enthusiastic and determined customer advocate, who builds and leads award-winning technical support organizations.  For almost a decade, Justin has worked with customer-centric companies like FedEx and VerticalResponse to create exceptional client care experiences. He holds a BA in English from the University of California at Davis, and resides in Oakland, CA.