On Rad's Radar

Focus on the Customer

By Peter Radizeski, RAD-INFO Inc.  |  December 26, 2013

With all the changes going on in the telecom industry, with all the chanting of cloud, BYOD, mobility, yadda, what should you do? My answer: Focus on your customer.

When I speak with agents, they tell me they get ink and move along – in search of the next customer. VARs are different. VARs don’t like to sell, so they just have to get as much of the wallet share as possible from each customer.

Agents need to stay in touch with their customers. If this isn’t your forte, outsource it to a virtual assistant or a marketing firm.

In the war for talent, it’s actually a battle for attitude. Attitude trumps most skills. A grumpy CCNA isn't an asset but a liability.

Take a hotel chain. They have spent billions on the property, amenities, advertising, sales incentives to get you to the hotel, only to leave the whole thing up to an hourly clerk. The first impression at the hotel is the doorman, then the lobby, then check-in. Three low wage workers are responsible for your entire experience. Hopefully, the manager isn't stuck looking at a dashboard on a computer screen, but manages by walking around.

We all have horror stories about customer service. The bar is set so low in America. But it does not take much to knock it out of the park for your customers.

Tony Hsieh built Zappos to a billion-dollar business based on hiring mainly by attitude. Hsieh writes in his book, “Delivering Happiness”, that the thing to focus on is outstanding customer service. Rackspace (News - Alert) built a culture around fanatical support. Happy employees make happy customers make happy profits.

Customer experience is a huge factor in churn, repeat business, referrals, reviews (think Yelp (News - Alert)), word-of-mouth and sales. Focus on the customer and the attitude toward your customer.

Peter Radizeski is head of telecom consulting agency RAD-INFO (News - Alert) Inc. (http://rad-info.net/).

Edited by Cassandra Tucker