We are working to establish a service capability. While the initial foundations in place due to hard work, the challenge is create a complete proposition. Everywhere there is a work. Recruiting is underway. There are comprehensive plans for training. From premises to telephones to the seating plan, the list of outstanding items demanding someone’s attention is endless.
In the chaos is a recurring question. What is service?
I want to say that the best service is, parroting Amazon, no service. Given the stage of our capabilities and plans for growth, I do not think that is an appropriate statement. I am struggling for words. So far, caring, responsive, and professional are my favorites. We aspire to be all this and more.
I look around trying to find service models. While the textbooks describe perfect frameworks, life is messy. Sadly, we will likely be like many airlines; asking that one gets upset before they will do what they knew from the beginning should be done. We may follow the pattern of car companies; churning out defects in the hope that we will produce enough widgets so that some will not notice. We could think that responding is the goal of service; ignoring the idea that customers would rather not call us if they did not have to.
I know what I do not want to do. I wonder what I want to do.
I wish I had an all embracing statement. Imagine the service equivalent of Paul explaining his view of God. “I admit to living in hopeful anticipation that God will raise the dead, both the good and the bad. If that’s my crime, my accusers are just as guilty as I am.” (Acts 24.15)
Perhaps I could say, “I live in the anticipation my clients never had to call or contact me in any way. Until then, my mantra will come in three parts.
I will respond with the right action before I ask a client to reach out.
I will take action instead of waiting for a reaction.
I will listen first; talk last.