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July 2015

Customer Service Has to Be Everyone's Business

Any single person in your company can make a positive or negative impression on a customer. And today, thanks to social media, that one impression can be multiplied, exponentially, within hours.

"Think of Yelp or TripAdvisor," says Kathy Cuff, coauthor of Legendary Service: The Key Is to Care. "You can go online and read hundreds of experiences other people have had with individual employees at thousands of restaurants, resorts, and other companies. What does this mean to you? It means that one customer's good or bad experience with one of your employees can become front page news for other prospective customers at precisely the time they are considering buying a product or service from your company.

"Today's customer has a big megaphone in that small mobile device and isn't afraid to use it. Here's an example: I was on a flight recently that was delayed because of weather. Finally, at midnight, the flight was canceled. As the airline was trying to rebook all of us, a young man behind me logged into Twitter and started tweeting about how frustrated he was with the airline and how horrible they were.

"I got on standby for the first flight out in the morning because I had mileage status with that airline, but the young man was rerouted on a later flight and wouldn't get to his destination until 24 hours later. I settled into a chair to take a nap until morning.

"When I got in line for my flight, I was surprised to see this man at the gate. I asked him what had happened and he said, 'I'm on this flight—my tweets did it.'

Explore the July 2015 Issue of Ignite!

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