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a blog by Don R. Crawley

Keynote Speaker on
IT Customer Service and Compassion

Bringing humanity into the world of technology

CALL: (206) 988-5858

Articles tagged  "empathy"

The Four Traits of the Customer Service Masters (Video)

By  |  December 7, 2011 7:49 pm

Just posted a new video on the four traits of the customer service masters. Hope you like it!

It’s based on my book The Compassionate Geek: Mastering Customer Service for IT Professionals.

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customer empathy

How to Deliver Great Customer Service: What’s Your Customer Empathy Quotient?

By  |  September 5, 2012 10:39 am

How’s your empathy quotient? Your ability to empathize may be your most important ability as a member of the I.T. support staff. Empathy means providing caring and personal service. Dictionary.com defines empathy as “the intellectual identification with … the feelings, thoughts or attitudes of another.” Empathy is your ability to truly put yourself in your user’s position so you can understand his/her frustration. Once we truly understand our user’s frustration, fears, and aggravations, we can start the process of delivering a meaningful solution for them. Sometimes it only takes a moment to really understand where our user is coming from. Sometimes it takes several minutes of listening combined with empathetic statements such as “I understand why you feel that way.” or “I’d feel that way, too, if I were in your situation.” Regardless, until you can empathize with your user, you’re not ready to start the technical aspects of the support session. Remember, it may be your technical expertise that solves the problem, but it’s your skill in dealing with people that produces satisfied end-users.

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Three Examples of Great Customer Service

By  |  September 6, 2012 9:32 pm

I recently flew from Houston to Seattle on Alaska Airlines. I experienced three examples of good customer service from, gasp, an airline. Yes, I know it may seem hard to believe. There are lessons here for those of us who support end-users. Two examples were with Alaska Airlines and one was with Delta. Here they are.

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Five Ways to Become More Compassionate

By  |  February 23, 2013 1:24 am

There is a lot of anecdotal evidence to suggest that living a life filled with positive emotions can have a positive physiological effect on our bodies. Like most people, I enjoy hearing stories that reinforce my pre-conceived notions about how the world is. I also recognize that anecdotes are great stories, but they’re lousy science and can often lead to poor decision-making.

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Are We Creating Advocates or Detractors?

By  |  March 5, 2013 3:32 pm

We can create advocates among our customers and end-users by delivering outstanding customer service. Advocates speak well of us when we’re not around to speak up for ourselves. The opposite occurs when we create detractors by not providing outstanding customer service. Detractors can torpedo our careers in a process I call “death by water cooler” when they speak poorly of us behind our backs. The way we treat our end-users or customers determines the result. This doesn’t mean we agree to everything. It means that we always treat our end-users or customers with respect, compassion, and empathy and that we carefully listen to them to ensure we truly understand their needs.

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The 6 Steps in a Successful IT Support Call

By  |  April 13, 2013 1:15 pm

When you take a user support call, there’s a specific order for how things should happen. In this post, I’ll explain each of the six steps, in order. I’ve also created this video to help you understand the steps. It includes a demonstration of a support call.

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But, I Didn’t Think I Was Being Rude! (Why Your Customers Might Think You’re Rude When You’re Not)

By  |  April 15, 2013 3:37 pm

I recently had a conversation with a client who told me he sometimes hears complaints from his end-users that he’s being rude. He told me that he didn’t feel like he was being rude at all.

I doubt he was being rude, but I suspect he maintains a “strictly-business” demeanor around the office. I’ve noticed in our email exchanges and phone calls that his responses to me are terse and strictly-business with no trace of humanness. He’s really beyond formal, in that his emails don’t even include a greeting (“Hi Don” or “Dear Don”), a complimentary close (“Kind regards” or “Sincerely”), or even an email signature. I noticed in our phone conversations that he didn’t initiate any sort of attempt to connect with me as one person to another. Of course, I’m seen as a vendor and sometimes treated differently from, say, co-workers. Still, I wonder if a clue to his problem with end-users might be found in the way he interacted with me.

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