By Sandi Grimm
Director of Administration
For truly exceptional customer service, a firm needs to employ staff members who genuinely care about the product and services they provide. They need to take pride in a job well done. Concurrently, they need to understand that when errors do happen, fix them and learn from them.
I remember a secretary I had years ago. She consistently produced multiple typos in written projects. I finally said to her one day, “Doesn’t it embarrass you for me to point out errors all the time?” I expected her to say, “Of course!” Instead, without missing a beat, she said, “No!” That’s when I realized we were from different planets. Obviously, typos weren’t the only element of discord. She did not remain an employee much longer.
Since that time, I’ve striven to be clear in the expectation of excellence for myself, and for those working around me. As I’ve transitioned into a co-worker or subordinate, I’ve seen the great value of an employee who will quickly admit an error, repair it and learn from it.
When asked something and you don’t know the answer, don’t say, “I don’t know,” without adding, “… but I will find out.” And then do your best to find an answer. If there isn’t a reasonable answer, you still need to get back to your co-worker and let them know what you did find out. Just letting it drop is not an option. If you don’t get back to your co-workers with an answer or solution, they will develop the attitude that you cannot be trusted to follow-up on details.
Same goes for being asked to execute some task that you’ve not done before. Learn how to do it. There are all kinds of tools on the Internet to increase your knowledge and expertise in almost any area you can imagine.