Jess Greene-Pierson is a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Zendesk. Jess shares her passion for building better relationships with customers and improving the customer experience through the the Zendesk blog and “Captains of Customer Happiness” webinar series.
She was recently recognized as one of the “Top 50 Contact Center Thought Leaders on Twitter” by ICMI.
We know that the answer is often somewhere in between, but the fun of this section is that you have to pick just one!
Paper < Plastic
Personalization < Privacy
In-Store Shopping > Online Shopping
Transactional > Relational
Mac < PC
Customer Service > Customer Experience
Captain Kirk < Dr. Spock
Talk < Text
Dog < Cat
Movie Theater < In-Home Rental
What was your first job and what did you learn about customer service in it?
One of my first jobs was working as a waitress at an Italian restaurant. I loved the fast pace of it, but what I loved more was waiting on our regular customers. I loved getting to know them, hearing how their jobs were going, and how their families were doing. And they loved that I remembered their usual orders – that one guy who always took his meatball home for his dog, and the family who wanted their small salads served in large bowls.
They were such small details, but what I came to realize was that I was doing more than just serving these customers – I was building relationships with them. I think it’s little touches like that which can mean the difference between a customer feeling like just another number in a transaction, and a human having a conversation with another human.
Tell us how one outside influence impacted your customer service or customer experience thinking. (For ex. book, movie, sporting event, relationship, travel)
My husband and I traveled to New Orleans a few years back, and that city wrote the book on providing a great customer experience. Nearly every person we ran into told us where to go for the best beignets, the best po’ boy, the best jambalaya, or the best bar to hear Zydeco music. And if their kindness wasn’t enough, their suggestions were spot on! I walked away from that trip feeling that the people of New Orleans really want visitors to feel welcome, and I think that’s a good lesson for businesses in general – whether your business is offline or online.
In your own personal experience, has customer service gotten better or worse in the past five years?
I tend toward optimism, but I do feel that it’s gotten better. I think the fact that I’m seeing more and more companies gathering feedback around customer satisfaction and NPS is a move in the right direction. The challenge moving forward will be to not just collect the feedback and benchmark yourself, but to use that data to find new ways to tweak and improve your product and service, and improve the customer experience across the board.
> I consider it a bad customer experience when I am placed on hold for more than 5 minutes.
> In five years, the most important social media channel for customer service will be decided on a customer-by-customer basis.
> The best book I read in the last twelve months was Packing for Mars by Mary Roach.
By Adam Toporek. Adam Toporek is an internationally recognized customer service expert, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. He is the author of Be Your Customer's Hero: Real-World Tips & Techniques for the Service Front Lines (2015), as well as the founder of the popular Customers That Stick® blog and co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast.