Is Legacy Thinking Killing Customer Service?

Posted on July 12, 2011 by


How many times have you been put on hold for a ridiculous amount of time?  How often have you entered a retail location to either be ignored or hounded?  Have you tolerated rude customer service because you just want to solve your issue?  I do not know one person who has been able to avoid customer service issues, but it is even more frustrating when the person providing the customer service forgets that YOU are the customer.  Is it an internal issue that causes this?

I think very often it is legacy thinking.  To clarify from my point of view legacy thinking is: “This is how we’ve always done it and this is how we will always do it.”  or “Just stick with the script” or “We aren’t trying anything new because that won’t work for us.”  That kind of thinking is killing customer service.  It makes customer service about the company providing it, instead of about the customer.  I recently came across this article about how a $3 charge and poor customer service cost a company a 5-year repeat customer (via the Atlanta Bargain Hunter Blog).

I applaud that customer for standing up for herself, instead of going for the temporary fix.  Those temporary fixes are just that, temporary.  Each time that we accept poor service and then the temporary fix, we are enabling companies to continue to business that way.  I find that unacceptable.

So for today’s #SMChat, we will be discussing the following questions:

Q1.  How do you encourage customer service innovation?

Q2.  What are your top monitoring tools so that you know if you have a customer service issue?

Q3.  How are traditional customer service metrics being married with current customer service channels?

Q4.  Is social media facilitating customer service innovation or creating additional service issues?

Q5. BONUS – Name the company that has most consistently provided you with the best customer service.

The Bonus question is to recognize those that are “doing it right.”  I think it is more important to focus on the best in customer service rather than the worst.

I hope that you can join us for #SMChat at 1pm ET Wednesday, July 13th.  It’s always a lively and insightful chat.

Posted in: Customer Service