Customer Service is a tremendous issue in Scott County ranging from the young apathetic employees to the bitter older workforce resentful of the need to go back to work just to help make ends meet. Please do not misinterpret the above statement… Our customer service problem in Scott County covers all sociological segments and has shown no age, gender, race, economic or religious bias.
Get Caught Giving GREAT Customer Service & Earn Big Rewards!
Scott County Visitors Commission’s Mystery Shoppers Program Details
Members of the Scott County Visitors Commission board of directors and staff shall actively identify individuals within the County for recognition of GREAT customer service between Sunday, November 1, 2020 and Thursday, December 31, 2020 (roughly 9 weeks).
One “Congratulations” card will be given by each board member (7) and SCVC staff (2) each week to an individual who that they catch giving GREAT customer service. This is an experience that they must personally witness. It could be an experience they received personally, or it could be an experience they see taking place around them within Scott County.
So, the Scott County Visitors Commission is going to recognize a total of 81 people in Scott County over the course of the nine-week program who they catch giving GREAT customer service.
What’s the Reward?
Each card recipient will bring their “Congratulations” card into the Scott County Visitors Commission offices located at 90 North Main Street Scottsburg in the old Scottsburg Train Depot between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM Monday through Friday. The recipient of the card will receive a $25 Visa Gift Card.
At that time, the SCVC staff will take a photo of the recipient, collect their name and the business name of where they were caught giving GREAT customer service to share in a weekly press release to the Scott County Herald and WMPI 105.3 FM. Additional announcements and recognition will be placed on the Scott County Visitors Commission and Scottsburg Main Street Facebook and social media pages too.
(Please note, that if normal business hours will not accommodate your opportunity to collect your gift card, please contact the Scott County Visitors Commission and every courtesy will be extended to see that you are rewarded for your GREAT customer service.)
As a result of how individual will be evaluated and the number of board members and staff of the Scott County Visitors Commission awarding cards good for a $25 Visa Gift Card Individuals may win more than one $25 VISA Gift Card but will receive only one entry into the GRAND PRIZE DRAWING for a 70” Television (estimated $550 value).
To be eligible for the Grand Prize Drawing all winners must claim their Visa Gift Card no later than Friday, January 8, 2021 by 12:00 PM (noon). The Grand Prize Drawing will take place on Friday, January 15, 2021 at 12:00 PM (noon). Registrants do not need to be present for the grand prize drawing to win.
The top ten common issues, experienced with retail, food service and the service industry uncovered in Scott County and what it really means:
- Lack of empathy. A lack of caring about the customers experience or problem! A customer is looking “the feeling that the employee/owners understands the problems or frustrations associated with the customers experiences and their emotions too.”
- Poor or missing processes and policies. We hear this all the time. “We can’t do that” or “this is not our policy” and even “we can’t make any substitutions.” Why would any business restrict or be so inflexible that it blocks the potential for customer loyalty and their satisfaction? Maybe this practice should be revisited and adjusted. If you do not have any process or policy in place to help an employee resolve the customer issue promptly and easily you might want to consider this an opportunity to gain a customer’s loyalty!
- Too much automation. There are times when automation can drive customers crazy. Extreme frustration results when an automated system cannot respond to the buyer or customer’s needs or impedes their opportunity to resolve the issue quickly and easily. When a customer has difficulty as a buyer they typically want to speak to a human who can empathize with the situation and help them with a solution.
- Poor or no communication. There are two key parts to good communication. These are speaking and listening. Sometimes, people just want to be heard and many great business ideas have come from listening to a customer who just wants to be heard and pass along an idea that might make things better for the next person.
- Poor or no follow through. “I’ll call you tomorrow to see if (whatever the representative promised) was completed.” Customers hear this, and too often the call never comes as promised. Nothing is more infuriating than lack of follow-up when someone is trying to resolve an issue.
- Unskilled personnel. Employees need training, coaching, and mentoring. This was never more important than it is now.
- A business culture that is not customer focused. The customer service attitude among your management shows in all you do or don’t do for your customers! If it is missing in ownership/management, it will be passed along to employees and will have a huge effect on your employees and how they treat your customers.
- Lack of problem resolution skills. Empathy, we’ve heard this one before, but it is important to provide a solution or you will lose a customer for sure.
- Lack of accountability. Many times, when you need to resolve an issue your customers find themselves praying that one individual at a company will take ownership and accountability for your concern. This should be in every employee and shared with ownership and management.
- Growing too fast. When a company experiences fast growth, revenue is often re-invested in income-producing activities like sales. In some cases, customer service is seen as an expense rather than a place to invest to retain customers. You see this with corporate or franchisees wanting to build their business and the customers always lose out.
By understanding the causes of poor customer service, this is the first step to improving what your customers have to say and share about your business.
Long-Term Impact of Poor Customer Service
Now, that you know what problems we have experienced in Scott County and the impact it has on customers – here are the potential long-term impact poor customer service can have on a community or business?
First, did you know that it costs businesses seven times more to attract a new customer than it does to train your employees and keep your current customers happy and coming back and more importantly telling other people about you? The disgruntled customers are the ones who tell five or 10 other people about what a terrible experience they had and have the loudest voices. The happy, content customers typically do not tell very many people, and in our little community you cannot afford to slip up and get a bad reputation.
Additionally, let us look at the trickledown impact that a poor customer service reputation alone will have on the County’s economic welfare if it is not addressed over time.
- Limited or no new population growth in the community
- Limited or no new business start-ups
- No business relocations to Scott County
- Poor or no business retention
- Loss of good to high paying jobs
- Loss of consumer spending locally
- Decline in tourism and the outside dollars brought into the local economy
- Decline and loss of existing business
- Higher unemployment
- Limited or loss of social services to help the community in decline
- Declining tax revenue from the existing, small locally owned, commercial districts
- More vacancies in our downtown and/or business districts
- Resulting in the decline in the value of property
- Increased city and county personal property and employment taxes to pay for infrastructure and services that are typically covered through business tax revenue
- Residential flight (moving) residents giving up on the community and more prosperous communities
While the above list sounds like a “doom’s day” message for our county, we have the opportunity to change our customer service efforts. We must do this for our residents, temporary (tourism) guests, future residents and for the existing businesses and the overall future of Scott County. It starts with each of us and we ALL must stop accepting poor customer service as the norm.