It is said that bad news travels faster than good news. When it comes to customer service, if the service is bad, the world will know. Good customer service keeps customers coming back, giving referrals and bringing friends with them the next time. Bad customer service causes customers to write bad reviews, call supervisors with complaints, or never return to that business. Tamika Hamilton has experienced it all and set out to help others improve their customer service skills when she started a customer service consulting firm, Randolph & Hamilton CSC.
Rolling out spoke with Tamika Hamilton about her business, skills that are needed in customer service, and more.
Why did you decide to start a customer service business?
It really started out with my husband, who is a Detroit police officer, and I, patronizing local fast-food restaurants and small businesses that we noticed [had a] complete lack of customer service skills. We jokingly stated, “We need to educate folks on how to provide amazing customer service!” That conversation happened in 2015, and in September 2016, Randolph & Hamilton was launched.
How does your military experience help with your customer service training?
My 12 years in the United States Navy taught me amazing soft skills that I teach in my training sessions, such as clear and effective communication, time management, professionalism, teamwork, and collaboration. These skills allowed me to soar in the military and guide me now in my civilian profession to help others do the same.
What are some key points you focus on in training?
My training points focus on self-awareness/empowerment, soft skills, job preparation (dress for success, and mock interviews) and then customer service training. I love to call my training customer service with a twist.The twist is getting to know and respect oneself for them to be able and willing to deliver amazing customer service.
How is empowerment added to your training?
Empowerment and self-awareness are the secret ingredients to delivering amazing customer service and [discussed in] the first training session of a four-part workshop. The importance of learning oneself to know what triggers certain behaviors is identified. We then address the root causes and get started motivating and building the individual up. This is done through power words, journaling, motivational and inspirational videos and testimonies.
What are three ways people give bad customer service?
There are so many. Well, I will give you my top three customer service peeves. First is tardiness. If you are consistently late with appointments, deadlines, or just showing up for work, it speaks volumes about your character and will reflect badly on you, your business and my referral. Second is no greeting or even acknowledgment upon entering any business establishment. I will walk right back out the front door. Last is the lack of acknowledgment of emails or not returning phone calls.
What are three ways to give good customer service?
Just recently, I was at Best Buy buying a work laptop. The sales clerk was uber friendly, knowledgeable of the system and brand, and went above and beyond to find discounts and savings for me. Three good ways to give good customer service is being friendly, knowledgeable, and doing above and beyond the service requested. Oh yes, I will return and bring a friend.
Why is having good customer service important in any job or career?
Whether you are working for someone or own your own business, the customer is king, and the quality of service you provide your customers will either advance you or your company or shut the doors and have you standing in a soup line.
Other than customer service training, what other businesses are you a part of?
Well, I currently serve as the board president for the world-famous Church of the Messiah located on the east side of Detroit, where we empower our congregation of 60 percent African American men under the age of 30 to use the greatness that has been placed in them to change the world for the better. I also serve as a certified life coach.
How can people get in contact with you about training and receive more information?
Photos in gallery courtesy of Tamika Hamilton