Customer Service: What Microsoft Can Teach You Not to Do

"Customer service is easy. Be mindful of how you would like to be treated." Lucy Kovalova-Woods

"Customer service is easy. Be mindful of how you would like to be treated." Lucy Kovalova-Woods

Many leaders prefer to be hands on. They yearn to know what is happening in their business. Such a business has a rise in starts and stops but mixed with pledges directed towards customer service and happy employees. They have the drive to be “Giant Killers.” Most companies forget the passion of a startup only to become so large that they hire dispassionate people to do the mundane tasks that once differentiated them. But if assuming the business fails to see managers walk the talk of service they began to fall back on hierarchal controls leading to destroying their business. 

The problem surrounding many organizations is the organizational structure and managerial processes. It’s difficult to build an organization with inherent complexities with the precision of a clock.  And it’s difficult to control all the results. Many organizations do not attempt to do so. Yes, they’re focused on next mergers and acquisition, indexes, etc. They’re focused on investor relations, but not on REAL investor relations; customer care service.

For example, Microsoft. Their customer service simply does not exist.  Merely attempting to address your question will lead to countless frustrating hours surfing the knowledgebase trying to find the solution, but unable to do so.

When Microsoft acquired Skype, rumors reverberated about the quality of support. This anemic support from the parent company did not improve with the acquisition. It only propagated. Recently, we had an issue with a lost password. Numerous phone calls and emails leading to countless chats led to either no response or people improperly trained. Really why should I use it if I cannot even restore lost password with service reminiscent of the movie, “The Gang that couldn’t shoot straight.” This is really sad. Yes, they eventually got back to us …….in two months only to say, you are still obligated to pay for old skype account, we are not giving the money back. Follow Lucy on LinkedIn.

When Microsoft purchased LinkedIn, we were again disappointed. Having conducted a trial of premium services we emailed LinkedIn for a simple question in preparation to purchase. No one has ever responded. The moment we implied we desired to purchase the response time was counted in minutes.   We received a request, “Please rate our product! If you have questions – please contact our customer support.” Yep, thank you. We just did. You never got back.”

Here is my take away. You have to stay-in-touch with your customer and keep raise expectations for customer service whatever the size of your company. If your customer doesn’t get his/her problem solved – they will not buy from you. They’ll leave for your competitor.  Do you like your customer leaving for a competitor?

Lucy Kovalova-Woods is a highly sought-after speaker. She is a successful author and strategist. To learn more about Lucy please click here.