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Critical Customer Service Skills You Must Have

I wanted to share an excellent article on customer service with you, I know how important this topic is to my fellow virtual assistants. Enjoy! Kathy McCabe


Critical Customer Service Skills You Must Have

By Dennis Sommer (

Do want to be known as “The Expert” or “The Guru”? Do you want to advance your career and income? If you answered yes to both of these questions then you need to become a “Top Performer” in your profession. Whether you are now a Manager, Executive, Consultant, Sales or Service Specialist, then Customer Service skills will be one of the keys to your success. Experience and knowledge in your area of specialty may make you an above average performer, but to be a “Top Performer” start implementing the following 16 Customer Service skills and action items today.

Top performers are successful by being honest, respecting a clients intelligence and focusing all their energies on how to make a difference in a clients life. After reviewing the following “Top Performer” Customer Service skills and action items, you will know how to be more effective, efficient, and successful.

As customer satisfaction improves, so does your revenue and career.
1. Your attitude, attention, and commitment to resolving customer complaints will have a huge impact on customer satisfaction and the likelihood that they will buy more.
2. Money motivates in the short term but helping make a customer’s life better will provide sustained success.
3. Guarantee your offering and stand by it. It is best to offer an unconditional money back guarantee.
4. Trust in your company and the customers perception of the level that your company and people will stand behind the offering in the event of problems is the number one reason customers purchase an offering.
5. The best way to serve your company is by putting the customer first. You may lose a sale today, but long term rewards will be much greater.
6. Quality improvements that improve customer satisfaction are more profitable than those focused on cost cutting.
7. Help customers achieve their goals.
8. Achieve your goals by satisfying customers.
9. Have the best interest of the customer in mind.
10. Get customers to discuss their needs with you.
11. Influence customers by information rather than by pressure.
12. Offer an offering that is best suited to meet a customers needs.
13. Answer a customers question as correctly as possible.
14. Try to bring a customer with a problem together with a offering that helps them solve that problem.
15. Disagree with a customer in order to help them make a better decision.

16. Give a customer an accurate expectation of what the offering will do for them.

About The Author – Dennis Sommer

Dennis Sommer is the founder and CEO of Executive Business Advisers, a management consulting firm specializing in business growth, sales and profit

Dennis helps companies increase sales revenue, reduce sales and marketing costs, improve marketing ROI, and drive new business growth by improving and optimizing their sales, marketing, company strategy and financial health.

Dennis is a highly sought after business keynote and seminar speaker and author of several highly popular sales, marketing, leadership and professional development international articles and .

Contact Dennis at 800-627-6512.

How to Stay Productive When You Work from Home

Here’s a great article to help you stay productive while working from home.


I’ve been working from home for more than five years, and sometimes it becomes almost impossible to focus and get work done. Because of that, I had to come up with some creative ways to be able to motivate myself, stay focused and make sure that my work from home productivity stayed on task. Here are five of the ways I stay focused and ensure that my clients are happy and that my websites stay on track.

1. Wear dress clothing.

One thing that everyone who wants to work at home dreams about is getting to be like a kid and work in his pajamas all day. Unfortunately, pajamas mean comfort and can distract you instead of help you focus. On days where I cannot concentrate and would rather watch TV or dose off, I get dressed like I am going to an office. By putting on a button- down shirt and slacks, or even a polo shirt and khaki pants, I am able to focus and accomplish more than I normally do when I work in my pajamas. When I was a kid, pajamas were great for things like coloring. As an adult, kids’ pajamas and coloring won’t cut it — so I get dressed up and am able to get more done.

2. Fake a commute to work.

One thing that you eventually miss is leaving the house during the day. When your home also becomes work, you sometimes forget to leave. The way that I fix this is by faking a commute to work a few days a week. Instead of walking to an office, I walk to a grocery store, like Whole Foods, where I pick up breakfast and also stop at the cleaners, or other errands I need to do. This helps me to get out of the house and focus more. When you work from home, you have no reason to leave, which makes your days blend together. Making your fake commute actually helps to break it up and get you to concentrate.

3. Set up play dates.

work from home productivityIf you are used to working in an office, you’ll find yourself craving human contact after you’ve started to work from home. One thing that I did was set up work dates once or twice a week with other local people who work for themselves. We meet at a coffee shop or all go to one person’s house and work from the same place. Not only do we get to have someone to talk to and interact with, but we also get to bounce ideas off people and get feedback, which helps better all of our work.

4. Find a way to break up your day.

After years of sitting in front of a computer and forgetting to leave my apartment during the day, I gained a lot of weight. I also started craving daylight because my days blurred together. To help fix this and to get my endorphins going so I could focus better, I found classes like AntiGravity Yoga that keep me entertained, get me to work out, and help me get more work done because I come back focused and relaxed. (This is actually a picture from my second time ever taking the class.)

5. Create mindless background noise.

Hearing noises outside or in the hallway becomes one of the biggest distractions. To help block those noises, I let the TV project mindless noise and colors on stations like Cartoon Network or the news. If you leave something on that you would watch, like the Food Network, that can become a bigger distraction, so find something that will act as background noise but not distract you.

Working from home is something lots of people love. The problem is learning how to keep yourself focused. You’ll begin to miss day-to-day interactions with people at your office, and getting to work in your pajamas could actually make you less productive. By learning what helps keep you focused when you’re at home, and making sure you can keep focused by leaving your house for a break or setting up play dates, working from home becomes a lot easier and you can become a lot more productive. Working from home is great, but you have to learn how to stay focused and also get your work done.

Visit Adam’s marketing blog for more tips and advice on marketing, organization and being an entrepreneur.

Are You a Cyberholic?

Excellent article from Scott Wintrip of  Wintrip Consulting Group / StaffingU


Are You a Cyberholic?

Do you:

1. Check your work e-mail, LinkedIn account, or business Facebook page right before going to bed?
2. Within minutes of waking?
3. Do you panic if you accidentally leave your mobile device that can access the Internet on your desk or at home?
4. Is eating your lunch often combined with texting or surfing the web?
5. Do you find that you must check your email the moment you hear the arrival chime?
6. Are you spending more time on your computer than you spend in conversations with customers, prospects, and referral sources?

If you answered yes to any one of these questions, you’re in danger of becoming a Cyberholic. Two or more, you’re well on your way to Cyberholism. Three or more, and you’re already a cyber addict. Four or more and it may be time for treatment!

Technology is wonderful, especially in how it gives us access to information at a moment’s notice while allowing us to log, store, and search information much more effectively. In addition, as a tool for quickly sending someone a note or a document, it almost never can be beat. However, more and more people are allowing themselves, and their time, to be thoroughly consumed by the click and clack of a keyboard and the hypnotic trance of gazing at output screens both large and small.

What’s suffering? Our connectedness with one another. A true meaningful connection with another human being is not through a portal. It’s in conversation, a meeting, a handshake, and a smile.

Pick one day this week to turn off the device and turn up the volume of conversations you have with the people that really count. It’s time for some Radical Accountability, an unwavering responsibility for getting done what matters most. And what really matters at work is not that next text or email, it’s that personal touch of taking time to be completely present in the presence of customers, prospects, colleagues, and employees.

Cyberholism is curable, one day at a time.

Scott Wintrip, the Sales Yogi, is the author of the upcoming book Sales Yoga: A Transformational Practice for Opening Doors and Closing Deals. He is also the leading authority on Radical Accountability, a process that prospers companies and changes lives. His website is

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