Not to frighten you or set you on high alert but there’s something you should know about working support…
If you’re not careful (and sometimes even when you are) there are many things that could go wrong.
It’s bound to happen when you work with people day in and day out who are experiencing frustration, or are at a point where they need help. While you cannot avoid 100% of the problems that can arise in a support situation, you can avoid some making some of the most common mistakes.
Failing to read the entire ticket
On a case-by-case basis, the most common and frequent support blunders occur because the agent read the ticket too fast, or didn’t read the entire ticket. It can be easy to do, especially if you’ve been dealing with a long queue that contains a lot of cases about the same issue. Though small, these can be terribly embarrassing to you and the company you represent; they include blunders like re-sending instructions or troubleshooting diagnostics that have already been sent, or leaving secondary questions unanswered.
Quick Tip: Always read the entire ticket and double check that you have addressed all of the questions before replying.
Failing to have a working knowledge of the product
One of the worst blunders is allowing the customer to have more information than you do about the product/service you support. All customer support agents should know and use the products that they provide support for. Each day they should be up-to-speed on bugs, common issues, and changes to the product that may affect the customer.
Quick Tip: Every agent should be briefed each morning on updates and changes to the products they provide support for.
Failing to own up to a mistake
Always own it, especially the small stuff. It you’ve done support-by-email for any length of time, then chances are good that you’ve had an experience when you’ve been moving too fast: you typed a name wrong, or you double-fired a reply because you didn’t read far enough back into a ticket. Or you neglected to attach the attachment you promised. Don’t gloss over it; this is a golden opportunity to prove to the customer that you aren’t a robot. Own it.
A great comeback to a small mistake is to say something like, “I’m sorry about that duplicate response! Those are our standard diagnostic questions, and I didn’t read far enough back in the thread to see that my colleague _____ had already sent those.”
or, “Thanks for clarifying that! I think I may have had too much coffee this morning, and I think I read your initial message too fast.”
Don’t lean on this. Read the ticket. But when you have to, then own it.
Quick Tip: When you make a mistake, own up to it. this is a golden opportunity to prove to the customer that you aren’t a robot.
Read your tickets completely.
Know the product you provide support for.
Own up to your mistakes.
These things will keep you from support blunders that can cost time, money, and reputation.