Awakening Academy & Learning Center
"Are You Busy...?"
This blog may appear to you as if I am ranting. In some ways, I may be. But I cannot help to share about my knowledge and my experiences in the "People Field". For years now, I have been speaking and decreeing that businesses and corporations have set up ways of dealing with people focusing on the wrong thing. There is an obvious lopsidedness of customer representatives being "task oriented" and far from being "relationship oriented". These customer representatives probably do not realize that they have violated both words in their title, especially the word "customer". Can I get an 'AMEN' anybody?!?!
There are many different expressions that I have created... One expression I have been verbalizing for YEARS is....
"PEOPLE SHOULD TAKE PRECEDENCE OVER
POLICIES, PROCEDURES, PRACTICES AND PROTOCOLS".
Hum... I would hate to ask you about your latest experiences with businesses or corporations that you have had to communicate with for either personal reasons or professional ones. How did that person respond to your inquiries? The statement above sadly represents (to me anyway) how the world works. Unfortunately, the opposite seems to have filtrated into how businesses handle their business, through the importance of their policies, their procedures, their practices, and their protocols, NOT the people they are associated with and not with an interest in building relationships. The reliance on technology does not help, but that is another subject for another time -- maybe next month. But let us look into customer service.
There are two basic, extremely basic ways that a person can perform their duties on their job (or in the household!). Either a person is more of a "task-oriented" person or a "relationship-oriented" person. A balance of both is necessary. Most people possess both skills, but many people heavily rely on one way or the other.
An effective customer representative recognizes the importance of meeting the needs of the customer or person they are communicating with as well as fulfilling the business at hand. It may appear to be a juggling act, but it is not difficult to accomplish both. Put the needs of the person first, then incorporate that into the business that needs to be handled. This means that you will first LISTEN, then conduct the business. An ineffective representative focuses on the company first or the information that is needed or required first which means they often miss what the customer is saying or asking. It is about the task to them.
Which one are you?
This topic is not about right or wrong, but it is about you thought provokingly respond to the following statements to determine which one represents you:
1. listening to your own dialog while speaking with others,
2. monitoring your own level of patience when communicating with others,
3. determining whether you are actually listening to the other person,
4. identifying whether you are more interested in getting your point of view across (you being heard),
5. acknowledging your own thoughts about the person you are speaking with
6. assessing your own emotions during your conversation with others
Earlier this morning, a financial company called to inform me that my payment was 4 days past due. I was grateful for the call because I had forgotten. But the person NEVER asked a very important question: "Are you free or available to talk?" Within seconds, the person rattled off the past due, the next payment...etc. I had to literally tell the person to stop... It took a few seconds, but the person finally did stop talking. However, as soon as I got a few words out, the representative responded to the very little that I said. They were much too busy accomplishing a task and had no regard about me.
Ineffective customer service! The customer service representative was more of a "task-oriented" person and most definitely not a "relationship-oriented" person. ALL businesses must be considered about developing a relationship just as much as they are concerned with completing a task. It is in the "relationship" that ratings are established. I tried to get a few words in by letting the person know that I was in the middle of something and could not talk then...but after about three times, I finally had to say for the fourth time that I was in the middle of something and could not talk. (I hope the call was being recorded in the hopes that a supervisor could recognize how the customer representative was ineffective with the job, but I sincerely doubt that the recording was actually made and that there is a person who actually listens to all recordings.)
I will end this blog with one comment: If you have to call anyone for any reason, it may be beneficial to first ask: "Are you busy..."? This will probably lead you to become more of a "relationship-oriented" person, especially if you now recognize that you were more of a "task-oriented" person.
Until next month..... remember: communication between two people involves two people!
The Spiritual Surgeon
(P.S., if you have been reading these blogs monthly, you may have wondered if you heard a message like this before. You did not imagine ti -- this topic was introduced in the July 2021 blog! Well, I guess that shows that I continue to smh (shake my head) over horrible customer service!)
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