Why give feedback?
One of the most effective ways a company can understand their customers is through feedback. There are many ways that customers provide feedback. They may phone and give their feedback verbally, they may send an email or they may complete a customer survey. Another avenue is social media which has become a common way for information to be shared. In some cases, you never hear from the customer, they just walk away and never engage with you again. Regardless of the method, giving feedback is valuable and helps companies to improve their client relationships and service standards and to understand what is working well and what’s not. It is also your opportunity to have a voice – so don’t be afraid to use it.
8 tips to provide feedback
- Provide positive feedback not just the negative – feedback is not just about reporting on negative experiences. Did someone go above or beyond to help you? Were you impressed by service, communications or your overall interaction with the company? Then let them know. Give recognition when it is due. Positive feedback is just as important as negative feedback in helping a company understand their clients.
- Consider the timeframe – don’t wait months to share your thoughts because some comments may be time sensitive and the company needs to be able to action their response in a reasonable time-frame.
- Be honest – giving false feedback is not helpful to anyone. If you had a bad experience, the company is unable to improve on future experiences if they are unaware of the problem.
- Be specific and give details – the more details you can provide, the better the response. If you have an unpleasant encounter with an employee, explain what made this encounter unpleasant. Was it the communication? Was it the lack of knowledge? What can you tell the company that can help them understand what went wrong?
- You don’t have to be a word smith – keep it simple. Think of the six key questions – who, what, where, when, why, how?
- Give the company the opportunity to act – it’s very easy to vent through comments or reviews on Social Media but it doesn’t give the company the chance to respond. Ultimately, you want the company to learn and grow.
- What is your desired outcome? – What do you want to happen as a result of your feedback? Do you want an employee congratulated on excellent service? Do you want feedback from the company on what steps they took to correct a problem? By providing your wishes, the company can focus on the best positive outcome for both parties.
- Follow-up – If you are happy with the way your feedback was handled, consider letting the company know. Likewise, you may be unsatisfied with the company actions and this is your opportunity to have your final say.
A final thought. If you have a tendency to walk away without communicating with the company, you are undervaluing the importance of your opinion. Company’s need to hear from you. Ask yourself, if it was your company, would you want to know? You might think your opinion doesn’t matter but the majority of company’s want to do the right thing by their clients… and you matter.
Kerri Schulz | HR Manager | The Money Edge Bundaberg