Senteo Rating 2.5
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Author:Frank Eliason
views 1561
Author:Frank Eliason
Senteo Rating 2.5

At Your Service
Frank Eliason, Wiley, 2012
Senteo’s Review information

Frank Eliason is no stranger to the customer service industry. With credentials from Comcast and Citibank as well as numerous features in several news organizations, he certainly is an expert on the topic. Using his expertise to prove a point is not his only point of validity; he also incorporates his personal experiences as a customer.

By combining his view of the subject from both the customer and business perspective, he establishes a methodology that seeks to establish a relationship with the customer through superior service. Noting that the world has transitioned into the digital age, he includes how businesses may wish to branch out to their customers through alternative avenues such as social media. His methodology stresses interaction with the customer on a personal level across the levels of management within an organization. At its core, Eliason is focusing on creating a customer centric culture within the business – one that creates an environment where the customer is comfortable viewing the business as trustworthy and reliable. This entails building that environment from the ground up, from tailoring speech and employee responses to emboldening company values and establishing a Customer Centric Officer. Eliason does it all with one thought in mind: focus on the customer.

There was a genuine sense of compassion that was conveyed through the author’s personal examples. By presenting the book in such a fashion, it indicates that he lives by his principles and practices the same techniques he champions. This brings forth the idea of behavior economics, a popular topic of late but for good reason – people’s behaviors can be interpreted and responded to in order to promote action. That usage of customer perspective also adds to the quality of what is presented; knowing that Eliason is basing his methodology on his own experiences as a customer reinforces that this is valid and applicable. There was also a noticeable amount of content dealing with social media, and in this day and age social media’s impact upon the perception of a business cannot be ignored.

While we do appreciate his experience as evidence of his expertise, we would have appreciated supporting information and research surrounding his proposed customer service techniques. Examples presented by Eliason may or may not be the norm for customer experiences with a company, and just as he claims that people can be biased by their experiences, so may he be biased by writing about firsthand accounts. An observational point of view would quell our doubts about the effectiveness of the methodology. We also noted that Eliason’s stance on social media is somewhat convoluted. On one hand, he mentions that the social media is surrounded in hype, writing it in such a fashion that it can be assumed that he is not in favor of social media marketing. However, the following chapters deal chiefly with how to make social media an effective tool for the business. While Eliason makes it clear that each business has its own perspective, the way he prefaces the section makes us hesitant to read it openly. We also noticed that in terms of standard customer service techniques, much of the content did not appear until the latter half of the book.

A guide to refocusing your business on those who matter most: customers and employees.Technology and social media tools have made it easier than ever for companies to communicate with consumers. They can listen and join in on conversations, solve problems, get instant feedback about their products and services, and more. So why, then, are most companies not doing this? Instead, it seems as if customer service is at an all time low, and that the few companies who are choosing to focus on their customers are experiencing a great competitive advantage. At Your Service explains the importance of refocusing your business on your customers and your employees, and just how to do it.

  • Explains how to create a culture of empowered employees who understand the value of a great customer experience
  • Advises on the need to communicate that experience to their customers and potential customers
  • Frank Eliason, recognized by BusinessWeekas the ‘most famous customer service manager in the US, possibly in the world,’ has built a reputation for helping large businesses improve the way they connect with customers and enhance their relationships

At Your Service will appeal to leaders, managers, business owners, customer service professionals, and anyone who wants to learn how to add value to their organization.

This book is a solid step towards creating an environment that stresses strong customer service and, in turn, a better customer experience. There is great utility from the book when they are applied at the forefront of the business, but that requires management-level support. The main intent of the book is to give these individuals a perspective of what is truly effective in drawing customers into the business, and to internalize this information requires both authority and resources. For that reason, while it would have an impact upon the individual frontline employee, this book’s message has the most effect when it is read and implemented by supervisors and managers who have the power to empower the frontline staff. The information in this book is highly actionable and, over time, it has the potential to repair the customer perception of a business.

Senteo Subject Category

This book expands beyond Eliason’s own opinions and experience in customer service to become a guide for how to implement changes within a company. Each chapter, while it may not seem like it, directly relates to how a company can and should apply its resources towards customer service. The examples that Eliason discusses immediately become the basis for his recommendations for action; he spares no time delaying his opinion on how the methods can positively impact a company.

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    At Your Service
    Frank Eliason, Wiley, 2012
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