Face holds a mirror to the mind. Every emotion evokes an expression. If you are in doubt, try smiling when some one steps on your toe. But the story goes beyond the expression. The book Tales of Knock Your Socks off Service quotes an unforgettable encounter at a fast food joint. Here was this young student, madly rushed and late for a university meeting, getting into the service line. She has just enough time to grab a quick bite. Ahead of her in the line is a shabbily dressed woman with two young children. The woman keeps pointing to items on the menu displayed behind the counter, asking questions about each one. Frustration is building up in the employee at the counter and the customers in the line. That’s when the manager of the joint comes out of his enclosure.
First thing he does is to wave the next customer on to his staff and then, smiling and friendly, proceeds to explain each menu item to the woman and her children. The scholar was puzzled till she finally realized what the manager had done. He had given the customer all the information she needed, without forcing her to admit that she couldn’t read the menu. For all the body language fundas taught in management courses, no one ever shows us how to read a face.
How to read your customer face…
An angry customer might have a sick child at home. What she needs is understanding. A nagging customer may be confused about the product or service. What he requires is clarity. A panicky customer could have lost a cheque. The response he needs is reassurance. So all it takes is a little empathy to figure out, Of course, we need to be watchful that we respond and not just react on emotions. So if your job involves handling customers and you are mixed up with a client who seems to drive you up the wall, take a deep breath and pause. Look at the face before you. If you can read the story it holds and act on it, you could win a prize – For customer service. What is more, you will get a loyal customer for free!”
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