Customer service is an integral part of what makes any business successful. It doesn’t matter if you’re in the dance, swim, gymnastics, music or child care industry – if your customers are happy, they will reward you with their business.
So what are the ways to improve customer service at your youth activity center? To answer that question, we must first understand why customer service is important to your business.
Why is great customer service important?
It’s no surprise that when businesses provide great customer service they retain more customers. But did you know that it’s those returning customers that are providing more value to your business?
By providing best-in-class customer support, your business can make-up some of the costs it took to acquire those customers in the first place, turning them into loyal customers who will refer friends to enroll in classes at your facility.
Investing in great customer is the equivalent of getting free advertising. You see, loyal customers who speak volumes about your facility’s programs help you acquire new customers, free of charge, by convincing new students and parents that your facility is the right choice for them. That referral is more precious than any combination of marketing materials you produce.
Now that we’ve established why happy customers are so important to the success of your business, are you itching to discover ways to improve customer service at your facility? Here are 7 ways to wow your students and parents with customer service.
7 ways to improve customer service at your youth activity center
When you find yourself communicating with an unhappy customer, it’s important to remember that there is a real human behind the concern. Whether you’re speaking with a customer face to face, over the phone or via an online support outlet, allow them to explain their frustration completely, download their experience and then reiterate it back to them.
Active listening doesn’t have to reside in your facility alone. Try the act of listening first in all walks of your life. You may see it paying off at home and with friends, too.
Learn to empathize with your customers
Empathy is the ability to understand how your customer is feeling and knowing where those feelings are coming from.
When you’re speaking with a concerned customer, it’s important to look at the issue at hand through their eyes and imagine how it makes them feel. Even if you don’t agree with the issue, the simple practice of vocally understanding the customer’s feelings will likely result in them being more receptive to the solution you provide.
Being empathetic to a parent or student will also help de-escalate a conflict and create a more enjoyable interaction between that family and your facility in the future.
Avoid negative language
When it comes to improving customer service at your youth activity center, you can never underestimate the power of words– negative words that is.
While a parent may have a concern over an issue that happened in the past, try to keep your focus on the future. Address the negative situation that happened in the past, empathize with the parent then speak in the future tense when explaining the solution.
Using positive phrases such as great question, I’d love to understand more and I’ll be happy to find that out for you can keep parents and students happy in the moment. At all costs, avoid matching their anger and frustration with your own.
Look for common ground
In times when you are unable to de-escalate a situation with a customer face-to-face, it’s helpful for all parties involved if your facility’s representative can find common ground with the customer. A sense of connection is what your customer desires, so instruct your staff on how to identify common ground and quickly.
The key to improving customer service at your facility is through clear communication – both written and verbal. Customers want to hear your position as concisely as possible. Without emotion, explain your proposed solution with three supporting facts. If the parent asks for additional details, by all means provide them. But know that most people want their issues resolved quickly.
If you are unable to respond immediately to a customers issue, be courteous by providing them a time frame in which you hope to reconnect and finish the conversation. This will provide peace of mind to your customer that their concerns have been heard.
Ask for feedback
How do you know if your efforts to improve customer service at your facility are working? Ask your parents and students directly. Once you look at the areas of support where you excel and which ones you need to improve, you can focus on those skills with your staff specifically.
Be willing to learn
Jackrabbit didn’t become an industry-leading software company over night. It took years of trial and error and learning from our mistakes to become the leading cloud-based class management software for our clients. And you know what? We’re still learning.
Your desire to improve your staff’s customer service skills is no different than our desire to provide the best product we can for youth activity centers around the world. In order to be the best agents of customer service for your business, you must be willing to work on these customer service skills and learn from your mistakes.
See why Jackrabbit Class is trusted by over 6,000 clients world-wide.