Any client facing job like hotel concierges, sales executives, boutique managers, business development managers to name but a few require you to constantly face people every day – for some this is a nightmare but for otherwise it’s a natural and easy process.
Through this job and through the people I have met, screened, profiled, pitched to and represented I have learnt that there is so many things in common with great client experience providers across different industries and for these people my only battle has been to get them to understand how they can apply their biggest asset (the people skills) to their best advantage often on a different stage.
Though there are of course many diverse attributes and skills that different people possess, I outline below some that help the people I have met to assimilate the brands they represent, quickly develop trust and create an environment by what they do and what they say that converts people into customers.
Whether it be in a Michelin Star restaurant, a Ferrari Showroom, at the front desk of a hotel or in a luxury boutique many client facing roles can be high demand jobs that require people to stand for 8 hours or more a day, constantly moving around, talking to people and engaging customers. This can be exhausting but you have to learn how to do all of this with a smile on your face despite how you are feeling, every single day. The less effort it appears to engage with you, the more people will engage with you.
It is no secret that customer service is a fast pace environment, where one must learn to operate different programs, handle calls, staff, deal with problems that crop up, and most importantly, meet the needs of the customers quickly and politely. You have to always be doing numerous things at once and always be attentive to your surroundings to make sure that nothing is wrong or out of place. Be like “the duck” your legs can be trashing under the water, but you must appear calm, in control and be able to take on anything the comes up.
Success in every facet of life is often determined by the style, content, timing and delivery of what you communicate – this is no more true than it is in client face roles. The successful communicators have one fundamental thing in common – they ALWAYS think about how what they are doing or saying is being received. I.e. they are masters of “putting themselves in the other persons shoes”
In client facing roles the test is normally dealing with an unhappy client, understanding the issue, communicating that you understand, what you are going to do and learning more about the customer experience helps you understand how to improve and you can actually convert a complaining customer into a sponsor if you do handle yourself right.
Be a “Fixer” - Go the Extra Mile
Almost every position will require some kind of problem solving ability. Nothing ever goes right all the time. The truly awesome experience creators are those that do a little bit more they might entertain your child, call you a taxi, book you a restaurant or offer advice on where else to buy what you are looking for. All of these things might seem like they lack sales focus, but they are behaviours that make you desirable, and as such the brand you represent desirable - anything that you can do to support your potential customers might pay back today or maybe at an outlet in a different country a year later. Differentiate yourself and build your image and your brands image.
Active Listening and Empathy
Active listening is the key to success in numerous industries and something that you will learn from customer service positions. Active listening requires you to pay attention, hear what the person has to say, and then ask questions or repeat their point back to them to let them know that you understand what they have said and that you have been paying full attention to them.
The best and the most successful client facing staff do this without even thinking about it, they ask questions, follow on questions and record and connect information to create a picture of the person they are talking to in order to be better equipped to help them.
These 5 transferable skills will work well in any industry and people who have these skills will always be a valuable employee to any company in any industry. These traits will make you a great hire in any customer focused role and will also be valuable to you in your life.
If you’re looking for a career change, contact me today or visit the jobs tab on our website.