When we talk about customer support, we talk about an essential aspect of user experience. We often hear stories about the conversations with customer support but rarely ask ourselves what it looks like on the other side of the screen? Here are some skills needed to achieve excellent two-way communication with the user that will be remembered for good.
1. Patience – Whether it is private or business communication, patience is the key. Working in customer support usually implies listening and understanding the inquiry to provide the best solution to the situation. To be patient means to understand and accept the fact that everything needs its time. Sometimes users cannot articulate their query briefly and clearly. Let them know it's okay. An interaction that lacks patience lacks results.
2. Active listening - Active listening is hearing the message, intentions, and feelings of the person you are talking to. Although sometimes it fails in everyday communication, it is an essential aspect of customer support because it gives the interlocutors a sense of visibility and purpose. When you don't listen carefully, you can't provide users the support they deserve.
3. Empathy - The ability to understand the emotions and behaviour of another person is crucial in providing customer support. Try to understand user inquiries and show them that you know how they feel. Only a few words can change communication from negative to positive. Sometimes it's hard to be empathetic with people on the other side of the screen, but there's something that can help you. Think how you would feel if you found yourself in such a situation and treat users like you would like others to treat you.
4. Positive tone of communication – Inquiries are often not easy to resolve at all. In these situations, do not take over the user's emotions. Instead, direct your communication towards positivity. A positive way of communication enables an easier understanding of the user inquiry. That is why developing communication skills is essential in providing customer support.
5. Communication skills and knowledge of the topic – Users want their inquiry solved as soon as possible, so each agent needs to know the subject and provide relevant information. Therefore, an agent with broad knowledge of the topic can provide valuable information more easily and quickly achieve the dream of every user support agent – a great user experience.
6. Time adjustment and time management – In addition to the tone of communication, resolving the inquiry is also important for user experience. Users will often face the inquiry you have encountered several times for the first time. With your knowledge, help them to explain the problem they encountered more easily. An agent who knows how to manage time will resolve inquiries faster.
If the user contacts the user support, they do so because of a specific problem. Therefore, each inquiry is a unique interaction for both the user and user support agent. With these skills, every agent will solve the inquiry with great ease.
The blog was written in co-operation with Tanja Bodrožić, CSG