For a little over ten years, I have been a part of customer service in different industries. Though the industries were very different from each other, customer service, at the end of the day, was very much the same. The goal was to identify the customers’ needs in a timely manner and address those needs to my best capability as possible. With this very basic fundamental of customer service, you are able to apply customer service to any part of your work life or personal life to build lasting relationships with people you will interact with on a regular basis. I believe customer service skills are important for me to have as an administrative professional for the following reasons, and here is how I can demonstrate this importance to customers:

1. As an administrative professional, generally I will be the first contact a customer has with a supervisor or firm I work for. It’s important to greet the customer with a positive, friendly greeting so that the customer understands that I’m there to help them with whatever they need.

2. Problems that arise with customers are opportunities to work on human relation skills by listening to the customers’ perspective of what happened and by working cooperatively and positively with the customer to show the customer that they are cared for and that whatever situation that has occurred is able to be addressed and resolved to the best resolution.

3. I feel the most important skill an administrative professional should have is the ability to actively listen. Because the administrative professional is generally the first contact a customer may have, it is up to the administrative professional to filter any issues, concerns, or compliments a customer may have. The only way to do this effectively, though, is to listen actively to what the customer is saying so you know exactly what needs to be address and who you will have to work with in order to address the situation promptly. Knowing how to listen actively also allows an administrative professional to pick up on non verbal cues from the customer as well as asking additional questions to obtain more information to better solve the problem. If an administrative assistant can address and solve a situation promptly, a customer is more willing and more comfortable to work with you and the firm in the future.

4. Like the golden rule says, treat others how you would like to be treated. This is a very basic human relation skill. It is important that an administrative assistant exudes this skill with courtesy and respect for the customer because it will show the customer that they are an important asset to the firm and that they will be taken care of. It also provides a pleasant foundation for a relationship that you expect to build over time based on mutual respect for one another. This is helpful for when situations do arise, you can calmly and professionally work together to resolve the problem.

In conclusion, the best way to approach a customer is to step into their shoes and figure out how you would want to be treated in the same situation that they are in. This helps level the playing field and gives you the perspective of both the customer’s situation and how you are going to address and resolve the issue as an administrative professional. 

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