All week a story has been forming in my mind – another disappointing customer service story inspired by none other than musician John Fogerty. But I’ve decided to save that one for another day. Perhaps it will surface during a mid-winter’s chill and warm us with its humour. Instead I’m going to follow the lead of my colleague Steve Foran (http://www.giveraising.com) and share a bit of gratitude for those who have excellent phone skills and provide outstanding service.
Here, in no particular order, are this past week’s Telephone Champions:
Beth Phillips: Beth works with my financial advisor, Glenn Stewardson at Assante http://www.glennstewardson.com/. I sent an email to Beth this week suggesting date for Glenn and I to get together. She emailed back that he wasn’t available and asked if other dates might work. I replied, by email, with another date and then … she phoned me! When I picked up my phone and greeted her, she said simply and cheerfully, “I thought I should phone because finding the date will be easier and faster this way.”
She’s right of course and I send out my thanks for her diligence and professionalism. It is so easy to get lulled into the often mind-numbing practice of return email when, in reality, picking up the phone will move us from making a decision to actually getting something done. Thank you, Beth!
Tracey at Healy Financial Planning http://www.healyfinancial.ca/. Matt Healy and I attended the same meeting this week and I called him with a question. Tracey answered the phone. She was welcoming, energetic and I could hear her “desire to be of service”. Matt was unavailable and Tracey took my message. After getting my phone number she then asked for my email address.
It isn’t that this hasn’t been asked of me before when leaving a message, but in all those previous incidents I knew it was about forcing me to communicate by email instead of the phone. Not so with Tracey. Her welcoming tone implied service. So, I asked her why she wanted my email address. Her reply – she wanted to make sure, regardless of busy schedules, that Matt and I did connect with each other. Thank you, Tracey!
Marie-Eve Francoeur, Bell & BCE Media Relations and Lise Noel, Archivist, Bell Historical Collection.
About 10 days ago, as part of getting ready for my business course at Nova Scotia Community College this Fall (see more details below), I left a message for Marie-Eve saying I was calling to be directed to Bell’s archivist. Marie-Eve is so efficient, she didn’t even call me back. Instead, that same day, Lise the archivist returned my call. She was so welcoming, so interested in my request for historical material on the telephone. I was thinking she might be able to provide a few black and white magazine ads from the 40s, that sort of thing. In less than a week, Lise has sent me some amazing vintage ads but also archival telephone training handbooks and the list of Halifax telephone subscribers from 1880. It is so exciting!Lise provided me with invaluable information that likely took her hours to organize, scan, etc. She did it all after one message and one detailed conversation. Many, many thanks Lise. You really exemplified phone power this week!
What about you? Have you encountered a Telephone Champion lately?
Upcoming Public Workshops
September 26 – Spreading the Word – a full-day workshop with Melanie Taljaard of More in Store that will show you how to combine phone skills with social media saavy to both engage and increase your customer base. For more details and to register click here: http://www.thephonelady.ca/registration/
October 3 – Exceed Your Quota – a full-day workshop with Peter Skakum of Tangent Selling Strategies that will have you booking more appointments, meeting with more people and closing more sales – immediately! For more details and to register click here: http://www.thephonelady.ca/registration/
October 18 to November 1 – Nova Scotia Community College – PhoneWork: The Art (and Science) of Effective Telephone Communication. For more information and to register click here:http://www.nscc.ca/learning_programs/coned/Course.aspx?I=690
One Last Thought:
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. ” — Dale Carnegie, author