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Celebrating Customer Service Week

By David R. Butcher, Assistant Editor, Customer Inter@ction Solutions


If you lift the spirits of employees, the result should invariably be a rise in productivity and quality, as well as a drop in turnover and absenteeism. If you don't celebrate your quality employees' achievements constantly, at least celebrate them next month.

Customer Service Week was officially recognized by the United States Congress as a nationwide celebration in 1992. It is held each year during the first week in October, taking place this year Oct. 3-7. The celebration, having spread to Canada and the United Kingdom, includes thousands of participatory companies worldwide. The firms can be found in such sectors as financial, healthcare, insurance, manufacturing, retailing, hospitality, communications, not-for-profit and educational organizations, as well as government agencies, among others.

First held in 1988 by the International Customer Service Association, Customer Service Week allows companies and organizations to celebrate the accomplishments of their customer service staff as well as their customers. It is the perfect opportunity to focus on motivating, recognizing, thanking and rewarding your reps for their valuable service; to revitalize your training program; to ease your employees' stress; and, well, to have a week-long party.

For example, customer service representatives at Positive Promotions, an organization that provides employee gifts and motivational products, has celebrated with a toga-themed costume party, appreciation gifts, prize drawings, puzzles and games.

In the midst of festivities, however, companies' customers should not be forgotten. After all, there would not be a celebration of quality customer service without the customers themselves. Customer Service Week is a good time to reconfirm your dedication to customers and properly show them your appreciation. Be sure to send every customer a thank-you card and, when they're on the phone, thank them 'for calling during Customer Service Week.'

So go above and beyond to show appreciation of your quality customer service representatives. Bring in the massage therapists and break out the goofy hats, balloons, togas, karaoke, cake and punch, wine and spirits. Celebrating both your quality customer service staff and your customers lifts both groups' spirits. The week-long opportunity for festivities is rounding the corner: Oct. 3-7. CIS

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