What Skills Should a Customer Service Rep Have? (Part 1)

In order to be a successful customer service rep, you will need to possess certain skills. Not only are these skills helpful for you, they will help eliminate potential disasters and severed relations with once loyal customers. Some people are not suited to be a customer service representative however if you find yourself possessing these skills, then perhaps you should consider have a career in this field. It takes a certain type of person to be a customer service representative. Below are some of the skills you should possess as a customer service representative.
• Patience. Perhaps one of the most important skills to have as a customer service representative. Patience is required and important to both the customer and to the business you are working for. Often times, customers will call in already frustrated about the issue at hand, the last thing they want to deal with is a person with a short temper or lack of care. While it can be frustrating for you to deal with a plethora of angry or irate customers, you need to realize that they do not know or care about the customer before or after them, all they are worried about is solving the issue they are dealing with.
• Clear communication. There is nothing worse than a mumbling customer service representative so make sure to speak clearly and also concisely. It is imperative to have strong communication skills. Often times, customers will give you clues on how talkative they are with how they answer you. Don’t ramble on to try the cheer the customer up, instead work towards solving the problem. Also, you need to make sure to communicate clearly what the solution will be so the customer knows what to expect. Companies can easily lose loyal customers if they don’t clearly discuss with the customer what the conclusion to the issue will be.
• Knowledge of your company and products. While you aren’t obligated to know every little tiny detail about all the products your company sells or distributes, it’s important to have at least basic knowledge. Learn about the history of the product, what makes it work and how it functions. You should do this with any new items that come in just to play it safe. Customers can get even more frustrated if they feel the customer service representative they are speaking to has no clue on how to resolve the issue they are dealing with.
• Troubleshooting issues. There are times where customers will really give you a difficult situation to deal with. Instead of drawing a blank and not knowing what to do, you will need to think on your feet and really come up with an idea on how to resolve the issue your customer is having. It’s not the ideal situation but there are times where you can really be thrown for a loop. Your ability to come up with a solution on the fly can be the difference between determining a satisfied and dissatisfied customer.
Sources:
1. http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/43-4051.00
2. http://www.helpscout.net/blog/customer-service-skills/

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