Great customer service is your competitive advantage. It matters! However, the magic does not happen without preparation. We are proud to share our best tips in this advanced guide to customer service training.
Our guide is not simply a training manual or a list of call center tips and tricks. It will help you breed a culture of success in your support department.
Customer retention is the key to growing your business. But to keep customers, you need reps that can negotiate difficult demands and craft empathetic responses.
To achieve that level of competence, all employees need training.
This guide will help you build a team of world-class customer service agents. We’ll cover onboarding, mentoring and coaching, psychology and culture for success.
Enjoy the guide!
The Kayako Team
NAVIGATE THE GUIDE
- Why Give Support Training?
- How to Onboard for Support Success
- Your Core Training Program
- Why Activities Make Training Better
- Create Empathetic Customer Advocates
- Train for World-Class Customer Service
Why Do We Even Need Customer Service Training?
Who needs customer service training and how does training affect customer service?
Training your team to meet customer expectations is the baseline for creating customer loyalty.
Consistently good service and offering proactive help results in more revenue. In fact, nearly 100% consumers say customer service influences their choice of brand and ongoing loyalty.
If your agents are consistent and proactive, you can more than double the chance for repurchases and loyalty. With an excellent training program, you can build a world-class support team.
What happens if you don’t invest in customer service training?
Failing to invest in customer service training carries a large risk because your customers’ satisfaction depends on it.
Achieving customer satisfaction through consistent and proactive support depends on doing the job right the first time with effective customer service.
Satisfaction is the customer service must-have. Without it, you risk losing customers and never seeing them come back. Almost 60% of consumers are unlikely or very unlikely to return to a business where they experienced poor customer service, even if a trusted friend said the service had improved.
This can only be achieved if your support agents are trained to provide a level of support where agents know what they’re doing and do it effectively.
So What Can You Do About It?
One of the biggest struggles for customer service—let alone training—is to get buy-in from the board of management.
Organizations that train and develop their employees see improved profitability “while cultivating more positive attitudes toward profit orientation,” according to a study published in the International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences.
Imagine How Well Your Support Team Will Perform When You Invest in Them
- They’ll always be advocating for the customer
- They will build a competitive edge in the market through their communication skills
- They will retain and attract more customers and create brand loyalty
Agents that undergo the right training are confident, equipped to solve problems and they act like your company’s negotiators
- They weave through difficult demands
- They craft solutions to individual cases
- They persuade customers who are about to cancel to come back into the fold
Your support members offer value that compounds across the entire team. If you want your company to be high-performing, you must invest in training them well.
- Kayako: How to Sell Better Customer Service to Your Board
- Toister Solutions: 13 Ways To Calculate The True Cost of Customer Service
- Capterra: How to Quantitatively Measure Customer Experience ROI
- McKinsey: Linking The Customer Experience to Value
Week One: How to Set Up New Employees for Success
First days are tough for every new employee. Solid onboarding systems are vital.
Getting a new hire to meet your team should be the priority on Day One. If you’ve hired someone to work in your office, it’s easy for them to meet the team. If your new employee is remote, you’ll need to introduce them across video chat, or through a platform like Google Hangouts, Zoom or GoToMeeting.
Then you can move to a more traditional onboarding process.
Onboarding Your New Employee
Good training and onboarding is the orderly introduction of new team members to their working environment, colleagues, the processes and documentation, and to the core values of your company.
New recruits need to learn and unlearn the things that help them fit into the company culture and do their jobs effectively.
Clear Expectations Avoid Confusion:
Make sure your team leaders and managers set clear expectations about the desired outcome of the training.
Transparency is essential. To clearly demonstrate tasks in the onboarding phase, use tools such as a Trello board.
Set Your New Agents up on Cross-Company Tools:
It’s vital your new support agent is set up on the same tools you use, especially for remote employees. Messaging or collaboration apps are essential for communications between remote workers and to communicate seamlessly with coworkers as if they were in the office.
Instill Your Team and Company Culture:
New employees need to feel connected. Introducing them to coworkers early on helps them settle in quickly so they don’t feel alienated. It will help them to build relationships, know who to go to for help or to discuss certain topics. All of this contributes to happiness and satisfaction at work. If your company has core values, make sure to introduce them to your new starters. (Kayako’s Director of Support takes every new staff member through the seven values outlined by our founders).
Self-Guided Learning Materials:
If you have a required reading list for new starters, make sure the material is ready for their first day. Introduce them to your internal documentation (covering product and self-service articles), performance tracking tools, and online training materials. Solid training guides are vital, as you or your co-workers won’t always be on hand to give help (more on that in Chapter 3).
Outline Processes and Policies:
Prepare all documentation before the new hire begins.
Talk through all areas discussed in policy documents so your new hire understands them. Introduce them to internal FAQs for easy reference. This may sound “corporate,” but it adds structure to processes normally picked up in casual conversations in the office. Remote workers miss out on these interactions!
Typical onboarding should take one to two weeks. After that’s completed, you can move them into a core training program.
“Building relationships with team members at the onboarding stage is vital. Physical distances can create communication barriers—remote workers need a support network they can reach out to! So what can you do to make sure your remote workers settle in quickly and become part of the family? Onboard them really, really well.”
Customer Support Team Lead at Kayako
Weeks Two to Four: Core Training Program
Customer support training can’t just depend on one-off inductions. Support reps need a systematic way to put theory to practice.
Think back to your school or college days. How many hours could you sit still and listen to someone speak to you?
There’s a limit to how much you can passively absorb. Training programs are not usually tailored to individuals, so that form of instruction may not fit people’s goals or learning style.
But training has its uses and its place. It’s great for new hires in their initial weeks, and for introducing your team to new product features, topics and approaches.
Good training programs accommodate both guided learning and private study. You can do this through mentorship and on-demand training materials.
If you want to bring active learning into your training culture, assign mentors to get your team up to speed.
Building a Mentorship Process from Scratch
Mentoring can take a number of forms depending on your team or company structure, but it must happen regularly and be actionable.
Mentors should be able to point to specific interactions and recent performance. Then they should use small-scale formats—1-on-1 sessions, peer mentorship or real-time coaching—to give feedback and work on making tangible improvements.
Mentoring customer support agents in the early months allows them to quickly pick up knowledge and skills that they might miss if they were looking at a whiteboard or reading a training manual.
Choosing the Right Mentor
Choosing the right mentor is vital to the effectiveness of the onboarding and training process. A mentor is there to answer any questions and provide daily support for the new team member.
If you operate 24-hour support, timezones can make the mentoring process difficult. But if teams are split across different timezones, you can choose the right person from the day or night team to support the new staff member.
If this is your first international hire, ask your mentor to work a split shift so they’re available in the new employee’s critical learning hours. This will accommodate the new support employee and meet the demands of your support queue.
Create Daily Focus Periods of Interactive Learning
Training new support employees is dependent on active learning. Watching videos, lectures, or reading documentation can only go so far.
New employees are nervous but ready to go. Don’t dampen their energy with training that rivals studying a dictionary!
Create active learning environments where recruits can interact with their mentors in real time.
If your product is complex, create daily focused periods so mentors can go deep into functionality. Don’t overwhelm support employees in their first few days! Crossed wires can do more damage than good when operating a complex product.
Beware of your mentor over-delivering information to your support team member with extended lectures and facts about your product or service. Ask questions to prompt thoughts by the new recruit about the product. Engage their curiosity and creativity—these make wonderful tools for active learning.
Conduct live or remote training sessions so you can answer all of the subject questions in real time.
One-to-one training is vital for new employees. Ensure they don’t sit in a room isolated and bemused by the software before them. They’ll end up resenting the company, when all they needed was a mentor.
In the core training, Kayako assigns a mentor to new staff to explore the basics of product functionality.
“As Kayako is such an intelligent piece of software, we have to be smart with our product training. We go over one support channel at a time. We might start with email on day one, social support day two, and Messenger day three. We then co-assign them the matching on-demand video training.
These daily focus periods are important so our new staff member gets a better idea of how to work across each channel. This is critical to our diagnosing process.”
Customer Success Consultant at Kayako
When to Use Training Materials
There is a time when recorded material is useful. Humans are exposed to a lot of stimuli every day. Consider the billions of commercials and advertisements you see on the web, TV and billboards. There’s just no way you’d remember them all!
Consider one-to-one training sessions in the same way. It’s a lot of note-taking and information for a new employee to process. Here’s where video training can help build product knowledge.
It gives them a chance to rewatch clips, look closely at the content, and to better understand what is happening. Our focus as human beings doesn’t let us take in and process this much information at one time.
Kayako uses Grovo to train new support team members through video.
Our Grovo training takes new staff on a journey through a previous conversation to show how we tackled it. The training starts by revealing the problem the customer faces, and then we go about diagnosing it.
We focus on explaining what we are doing, and why, while recording what we are doing on screen.
In a support role, you’re actively looking for issues that should be passed on to the correct teams. Explain what to look for, and the essential information to be collected. Then, in a corresponding video, you might show how to log an issue for the engineering team to be debugged.
Training within an orientation period gets you going. The true work towards a high-performing support team happens in the first few months.
Move Past Passive Training and onto Activities: The Second Month in Support
Even after training, many new support agents still feel grossly underprepared as they go out and handle customers. Why?
- They’re new and learning the basics of your product and will struggle with unique cases.
- They’re picking up the basics and will struggle with difficult demands.
- They will need their mentor to lean on during the initial induction months.
Becoming a self-sufficient support agent takes longer than you think.
Kayako’s new support agents need to lean on their mentor for at least three months. And we expect it to take them six months before they know the answers to most things without seeking advice.
Mastery comes from practice, repetition and from having more experienced colleagues point out important things…up to a point! After a while, training hurts.
Coaching Builds the Framework for Great Support
Mentoring inspires support agents to adopt an active learning mode. But coaching helps support agents master their skills and funnel them into better interactions.
The individual feedback and support from a mentor enables agents to guide customers through positive experiences.
Important skills for agents to learn early include:
- Following guidelines and not rules
- Building a support-driven culture
Learning Negotiation Skills
In the early days, agents focus on fully understanding what the product or service offers customers, not on how to deal with difficult ones.
These are typically called hard skills (for example: positioning alternatives and anchoring expectations, which are covered in depth in Chapter 5). The skills that allow support agents to control a customer conversation aren’t learned in training; they’re built up over time during coaching.
These skills become intuitive with practice, so roleplaying and 1-on-1 sessions, as well as anything that involves feedback and repetition, preps support reps to use this kind of skill set.
Following Guidelines, Not Rules
Support agents are empowered to do their best work by using guidelines or a framework, not a rulebook.
If you’ve got a set of canned responses or a book of phrases sitting around, this is going to reduce the support agent’s ability to answer a customer conversation using critical thinking.
New support agents can be trained in critical thinking by being coached through a limited number of scenarios. Agents can then put this specific feedback into practice right away.
This helps you shift a team from running on rules and restrictions to a confident working style, operating with efficacy to adhere to a set of guidelines. Their individual interactions—making judgment calls, steering customer conversations towards positive resolutions and for new agents taking ownership of the outcome—will improve!
Being Part of a Support-Driven Culture
Support drives Kayako’s culture. We invite a small number of support agents into a coaching session and go through past scenarios that the mentor or coach has worked on.
They introduce the problem and handover to a support agent in the session to replace them and carry on diagnosing the scenario. Everyone pays attention because they know they can be called on by the audience to play any role at any point during the discussion!
After we’ve played out the scene, the success manager leads a discussion, going over questions like, “What would they have done? Why?” During these sessions, we question everything!
Interactive Coaching and Mentoring Creates A Culture Of Customer Advocates
Keep learning active. Don’t just hand over a booklet or have your reps sit through hours of training on their own. Assign a mentor or coach to help them through their first and initial months of integrating into your team.
It’s essential not to just rip off the training wheels, and push the new support member out on their bike. Each support member needs consistent mentoring to become fully self-sufficient.
Tips to Train a High-Performing, Emotionally Intelligent Support Team: Months 3-6
The word that should come to mind most when you think of training a great customer support team is empathy.
How do you make your team more empathetic? What even determines empathy? It’s not easy; it’s part of the bigger system of emotional intelligence (sometimes written in shorthand as EQ or EI).
Emotional Intelligence is a customer service requirement
Psychologists Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer coined the term “emotional intelligence” in 1990, describing it as “a form of social intelligence that involves the ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and action.”
It’s easy to see why emotional intelligence is one of the key traits needed to provide great customer service.
The best customer support agents identify the problem, take control of the situation, and actively lead the customer to a solution.
Emotional Intelligence Falls into Five Dimensions:
Daniel Goleman, a well-known author on emotional Intelligence, adapted the original theory into his own model.
In Goleman’s model, there’s a hierarchy among the five dimensions of emotional intelligence. This means some qualities and traits are a foundational platform for others.
The first 3 dimensions add up to what Goleman calls “personal competence.”
- Self-awareness & self-esteem
The other 2 dimensions add up to our “social competence.”
- Social skills
Personal competence comes from being aligned with the business’ mission and values, and from feeling as if your work is contributing to a purpose bigger than yourself.
Understanding how your work contributes to a bigger purpose is perfectly illustrated by the story of the janitor working at NASA in the 1960s who, while sweeping the floors in the hallway, told a visitor he was helping to put a man on the moon.
Social competence is a customer service strength. It comes from understanding your customers’ pains, relating to their frustration, and actively leading them to a solution through strategic language.
Personal competence cannot be trained, but social competence can.
But how do you train for this? Arming your reps with 50 different ways to say “sorry” is not enough. Soft skills may make for pleasant interactions, but they don’t retain customers.
How do you train people in soft skills, and hard skills?
Experience Engineering: “Hard” Skills for Support Pros
Matt Dixon, co-author of The Effortless Experience, identified a new approach to bridge the gap between both, called experience engineering.
“An approach to actively guide a customer through an interaction that is designed to anticipate the emotional response and preemptively offer solutions that create a mutually beneficial solution.”
We’re talking about more here than being friendly, repeating the customer’s name, or empathizing with a personal situation. Agents must be a step or two ahead and spot the potential negative situations.
Experience engineering is a form of support that is both learnable, repeatable and has a direct impact on customer loyalty.
Here are some of the skills that make up experience engineering:
- Advocacy: demonstrating clear alignment with the customer and supporting them in an active way.
- Positive language: resisting the use of words or phrases (like “no” or “can’t” that convey an inability to reach a productive outcome with the customer
- Anchoring: positioning a given outcome as more positive and desirable by comparing it to another less desirable one.
Advocacy For the Customer’s Needs
Advocacy is all about aligning your actions with the customer and actively helping them to get to a solution. Even if you’re bearing bad news, you do so in a way that reduces customer effort.
Apple demonstrates advocacy extremely well in their training manual they hand out to Geniuses.
Geniuses are taught to employ the Three Fs: Feel, Felt, and Found. This works especially well when the customer is mistaken or has bad information.
Customer: This Mac is just too expensive.
Genius: I can see how you’d feel this way. I felt the price was a little high, but I found it’s a real value because of all the built-in software and capabilities.
The maneuver is excellent. The Genius has switched places with the customer. And maybe that laptop isn’t too expensive after all.
Empathy, politeness and other soft skills have their place in customer conversations, but they don’t hold a candle to the psychological power of these techniques.
Make Positive Language Choices that Inspire Confidence
First, swap out “I’m not sure I can help you with that” with “Let’s see what we can do.” The difference in word choice tells customers you’re going to work with them to find a solution that works for them.
The next step is to master positioning alternatives.
Customers can often have specific requests you can’t honor. The trick is to offer an acceptable alternative that would still benefit the customer.
Let’s say Cathy finds the perfect dress online for a hot date on Friday. She calls in to see if the store can get it to her in time:
Customer Cathy: Hi, I’ve just spotted this red dress online. It says it’s in stock in my size. Can you ship this red dress to me? I really need it by Friday.
Support Sam: I’m happy to expedite the shipping for you, as I can see you really need the dress for this weekend. Let me just check when our last pickup is with our express courier. It seems we’ve just missed them as they picked up their last delivery for the day 30 minutes ago. It looks like I can get you the red dress but I’d have it by Monday and that might be a little too late for you. Would you like me to put it on hold so you can collect it in-store?
This kind of response requires building rapport with the customer. Deep down, Cathy knew her request was a big ask, ordering so late on a Thursday. She just needed you to know how much she wanted the dress.
Anchoring is a method that makes one option sound way better than the other. It reframes an unfavorable situation by focusing heavily (or anchoring) on the option that is more attractive and easily fulfilled by you.
Let’s say you’ve booked a flight from New York City to Chicago, but there’s an issue with the plane and it’s stuck in its previous destination.
Service Desk Diane: It looks like the next guaranteed flight I can get you on is Monday next week, but let me check if there are any open seats with a closer departure date. Actually yes, I can get you on a flight on Saturday, at least that’s two days instead of next week. I know that’s still a delay, but does that work?
Even if Diane already knew she could get the customer on the plane in two days’ time, she needed to anchor the customer’s expectations by reducing the blow that they would be stuck on the ground for two days.
- Kayako: 3 Ways to Politely Reject Customer Requests
- Seth Godin: Let’s stop calling them “soft skills”
- Gizmodo: How To Be a Genius: This Is Apple’s Secret Employee Training Manual
- Kayako: 10 Tips for Responding Graciously to Customer Feature Requests
Ideas to Build a Culture of World-Class Customer Service
Once you’ve moved past the first six months of training your support team, it’s vital that you carry on helping them progress their skills and careers.
What happens if you don’t? Your team will experience building frustration about carrying out the same tasks with the usual customers each day.
Here are a few ways you can begin helping your support pros level up:
- Use of Objective & Key Result (OKRs) or projects
- Create an environment of feedback through continuous coaching
- Conducting 1:1s with team members
Use OKRs and projects to develop support skills
Objective & Key Results (OKRs) is a concept developed at the Intel Corporation and widely used among the biggest technology companies in the world, including Google and Zynga.
Typically used to align the goals of the organization to the department then onto individuals, OKRs can truly help your employees to see how they are contributing to the big picture and align them with other teams.
It’s best to visualize this as a pyramid:
Is the goal of the business to retain more customers?
If so, the support department will look for ways to reduce friction in interactions with customers, and the marketing team might look at introducing a loyalty program.
The Director of Support will then assess ways to increase retention by tasking managers to audit their help center, and support agents to write or update some articles.
Use OKRs to Develop Team Skills
Continuous professional development can transform your career trajectory. For a customer support rep, you can become better at your job in ways you never expected by developing the right skills.
OKRs offer the perfect opportunity to develop customer service skills in your team.
There are many ways you can match OKRs to your business goals and help your team to get better at customer support by developing skills.
Kayako has used this approach with:
- Product testing. Every support staff member thinks engineers work at their own convenience, and every engineer thinks support can’t explain things properly to customers. Helping to roadmap the releases means Support can identify and handle minor bugs, and also to communicate the correct issues to customers or engineers.
- Webinars to train customers. What better way to pass on your product knowledge than with online training? It helps your team build public speaking skills, and they create better connections with customers.
- Contributing to the company’s blog. Writing for the business blog helps support agents understand different ways of communicating information. This will help Support develop better communication skills in customer channels.
- Coaching, mentoring, and training new staff. Helping newer employees to get up to speed, or to develop themselves professionally, is a great way to learn skills and insights as a customer support rep. Explaining how to conduct tasks and perform your role is not easy, but it can help you gain a new perspective on your work.
Creating documentation for the help center. If you’ve got a product or knowledge expert on your team, imagine combining that technical knowledge with writing skills—it will be professional gold dust.
- Language localization projects. Support teams help customers worldwide. Using your first or second language for localization projects will dramatically help the business’ relationship with customers in those regions if they can use your product or service in their first language.
- Projects that contribute to better customer support. There might be a channel that’s underperforming. For Kayako, our Messenger team (formerly live chat), worked on a 6-month project to increase availability, shorten first response time and reduce wait time.
- Gathering vital Voice of the Customer data. Understanding your customers’ frustrations is key to great support. But you can really benefit everyone if you can collect that frustration, and provide a business case for improving your product. This process turns a support agent into a subject matter expert who is able to help customers more quickly and easily.
How Will You Help Your Team Advance Their Skills?
There’s so much a support team can do beyond day-to-day activities.
This makes professional development and training a business policy, which aligns with business goals and helps your team see the big picture they’re part of creating.
The result is a happier, staff and team members who are involved in more exciting and challenging days—the kind of professional challenges they want! Win-win, right?
“A core value at Kayako is ‘live to learn.’ The constant pursuit of improvement is why we get out of bed in the morning. We don’t just hire people for their current skillset. We want employees to grow with us.”
Co-founder of Kayako
Consistently Highlight Both Positive and Negative Feedback
The word feedback often has a negative association. When someone says to you, they’d like to give you some feedback, it can sound like they’re going to be critical of something you’ve worked on.
Feedback is best delivered on a one-to-one basis (more on that in the next section). But you should also look at cross-company feedback to show the success of the support department.
Create a Culture of Feedback to Improve Your Support
Many support reps believe that feedback sessions happen mostly because they get it only when they’re “in trouble”.
Yes, you should use coaching to highlight things when they could have gone better. A best practice is doing this right away, whether that’s delivering it over Slack or jumping on a call to diagnose the issue.
Use this time to talk out the scenario. Start from the beginning to understand how they got from decision to action. Come from a place of no judgment first—you’re just collecting information and understanding the scenario. Then move to talking through how it could have gone differently.
Don’t forget about positive feedback. It’s important, too!
It lets support reps know what they’re doing really well. too.
This has to be specific. “Don’t just say GOOD JOB!,”
It might sound like: “Hey, you took the time to talk to that customer and explain the backup solutions. It panned out really well. You should reinforce that in all interactions!”
Communicate a job well done. Be sure to highlight exactly what was good so the team member can repeat and develop that action.
Train Your Team to Aim for Better Service
Accountability can be an excellent way to empower support teams to aim for better service. One of the best ways to do this is with a cross-company report about the support team’s performance that highlights customer satisfaction.
Kayako reports our customer satisfaction on a bi-weekly basis.
We analyze our key trends on support conversation ratings to better understand and shift our focus as needed. We also reflect on the common trends of conversations with negative ratings, so we can learn and improve.
The feedback for conversations provided contains observations and a proposed improvement column. These opinions are shared with everyone on the team. This feedback is not aimed at any specific individual; it is for us all to learn and improve.
Feedback needn’t be a scary word. Well-structured feedback can lead to a high-performing support team.
Real-time coaching and mentoring on conversations will help each support agent to improve their current skills, creating better support experiences for customers.
Use 1:1s to Check In, Help Professional Development, and Train New Software Features
One-on-one-meetings are vital to check in on the members of your team. They’re also the perfect opportunity for more personal communication.
As a manager, your constructive feedback can lift your team’s morale and performance. This may be letting someone know they’re doing a good job in a way that sounds genuine. Or, it may be providing practical and actionable feedback without offending someone who needs to improve their work.
One-on-ones are the perfect medium to check in on personal problems, like outside issues that may be affecting work, aid someone’s professional development, and train them on new features your product or service offers.
Check In with Team Members
In one-on-ones, it’s important that you check in on a personal level first. Ask your team members to prepare a quick agenda, as you don’t want to spend the first few minutes sitting around in an awkward silence. But if you’re struggling, just get talking and enquire lightly:
- How are things going?
- Anything I should know about that’s coming up?
- How’s this project you’ve been working on?
Your team member might be going through a lot of stress at home. Unfortunately, private lives can affect how we act and feel in the workplace. This is why it’s vital for managers and team leads to schedule these check-ins.
Help Professional Development
Next, you want to check in on the OKRs your support agent is working towards.
As these projects typically last over a quarter, you want to make sure the agent is making incremental progress towards them each week. That can help them break down what may feel like mountainous tasks into easily manageable segments they can work on weekly.
If they’re struggling, start putting deadlines on this work. Deadlines can help us be more productive with work that typically falls out of our standard day.
Then move the discussion to how they can develop skills to progress their career within the company.
Kayako expects a new Customer Support Advocate to be able to:
- Investigate and resolve escalated technical customer inquiries via different channels—emails, calls, chats.
- Replicate and document bugs and usability issues to escalate to engineering.
- Follow up with customers regarding technical inquiries and proactively ensure resolution of issues.
- Increase customer satisfaction and build loyalty by providing amazing, personal customer support.
If they can do all this, then how can we help them develop their career further to become a subject matter expert? We’ll explore ways to help them:
- Become a frontline player on the production floor.
- Become a first-level escalation manager.
- Respond to a customer through a variety of channels like email, Twitter, and forums.
- Drive our Voice of the Customer program, and work closely with the product and engineering teams to prioritize customer feedback and improve Kayako.
As a director or manager, there is nothing better than seeing an employee advance and scale their career under your guidance. They get the rewards of job titles and pay increases, and you are rewarded by seeing them develop and creating loyal advocates for your business.
Helping your employees become better at their jobs creates happiness that transfers to your customers.
“We are all here to live to learn. The constant pursuit of improvement can be stifled by fear, doubt, inertia, and procrastination. But we don’t shy away from battle against the resistance. Helping employees learn and develop is core to Kayako’s culture. It’s the reason we get out of bed in the morning.”
Founder at Kayako
Train New Software Features
Use the final moments of your one-on-one meeting to talk about what’s coming up in your product or service. With new updates comes more training.
You’ll want to let support agents know if the development team is about to implement any alpha testing on your product, or if any particular customers will start using a beta version of your new product.
New features equal new skills to learn. You want your support team to be aware of how this will look and what will change, and they should have the chance to ask any questions about usability that will affect the way they help customers.
Once new employees are successfully onboarded into your team and trained to support your customers, the development can’t stop there. Just helping new employees through the door and getting them up to speed is not enough. They need consistent help and guidance to navigate and grow their way through the company. It will benefit your business and boost its reputation for providing great customer support.
Through training your team members in becoming experts in particular areas, you’ll increase the support team’s involvement across the business, creating a company culture that can rival the culture of a business like Zappos.
Great customer service is your competitive advantage. It matters! But the magic does not happen without preparation. We are proud to share our best tips presented in our advanced guide to customer service training.
This guide is not simply a training manual or a list of call center tips and tricks. This guide will helps you breed a culture of success from your support department.
Customer retention is vital to keeping your business growing. But to keep customers, you need to have staff that can negotiate difficult demands and craft empathetic responses when the heat is on.
To achieve that level of competence, all employees need training.
This guide will help you move new employees through their first 30 days, their second month, months 3-6 and beyond. You can also use it to build a team of world-class customer service agents. We’ll cover onboarding, mentoring and coaching, psychology and culture for success.