Telephone Mystery Shoppers Find Hard Times Drive Hard Tactics

Good phone skills should be obtained by building a level of rapport with a prospective client before asking for their business.

(Archive – advancedfeedback.com – San Diego, CA, Feb 19, 2009) – With the country now officially recognized as being in a recession since December of last year, businesses are scrambling to adapt. Many are simply trying to hang on, abandoning, at least for now, visions of increased market share. Thus it perhaps should come as no surprise employees who deal with the public over the phone have become more aggressive, says Kurt Adams, Senior Accounts Director of Advanced Feedback, a leading provider of telephone monitoring services. “It used to be we were asked to measure items that tended to make the customer feel warm and fuzzy, such as using their name. Now it seems the sole focus is how many times we get asked for our business”, commented Mr. Adams.

While employee interest in getting or retaining a customer’s business is undeniably an aspect of good service, how and when this is manifested can be of equal importance. Specifically, Adams’ cites asking the customer for the business in the first 10 seconds of the call. “I know it’s a bit of an exaggeration, but isn’t that like asking someone for a date before knowing their name?” he asked. Good phone skills suggest building at least some level of rapport with a prospective client before getting to the proverbial bottom line. Showing interest in a customer is more than asking repeatedly for an appointment or reservation; other elements include using the customer’s name or asking how they happened to be in the market for the company’s services. Moderation, as Ben Franklin reminds us, is a good thing.

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