FROM “EVERYTHING COMMUNICATES” TO “EVERYONE COMMUNICATES.” THE PARADOX OF CUSTOMER SERVICE
The world always warms to the unlikely hero, especially if it’s someone just like you and me. Reality TV is somewhat based on this premise: ordinary today, extraordinary tomorrow. All it takes is a little magnification or spotlight.
Our customers are now providing that spotlight or platform. And more often than not, it’s a hapless and disempowered customer-service rep, cashier, sales clerk, or other junior employee in the trenches who is the cause or catalyst—and subsequent (disa)star of the show!
Every single employee in an organization represents the company as a window into the business, and as far as your customers are concerned, they are the only window they look through. Best to make sure that what lies beyond the window is suitable viewing, don’t you think? Customers don’t care that you have 10,000 employees in 200 offices out of 80 countries; they just want their problems solved by as few people as possible. They also don’t care if the person they’re speaking with has an Indian or American accent as long as—you guessed it—the person solves their problems.
When it comes to serving customers, creating a flat organization of democratized access, care, and responsiveness makes a huge difference. As outlined in Chapter 7, Zappos puts an enormous emphasis on its frontline workers. All of its employees—431 total, pre-Amazon.com
acquisition—are Twittering without the filter of a public ...