Responsiveness is the ability to be aware of people so you can respond in a relevant way.
Have you ever been to a restaurant and no one pays attention to you? The minutes wear on and your patience wears thin. This is not responsiveness on the part of the staff.
How about being on hold for ages? Finally, after what seems like an eternity someone comes on the line only to challenge you to prove your identity?
A couple of days ago I needed support for a service that wasn’t performing as advertised. I started the online chat. It asked me to tell you about my problem to they could assist me with it once an agent was available. So I began writing out the problem I was experiencing. Then I waited. Finally, an agent wrote saying they hoped my day was going well and they’d love to help me resolve my problem. So I waited for them to read what I’d written and offer a solution. I waited and then the message came that because I hadn’t responded they had terminated the chat!
Hadn’t responded? I was waiting for them to read and acknowledge what I’d written!
Talk about a lack of responsiveness.
When I got through to the next chat agent they informed me there was no history of my chats tied to my account. What?! Yes, everything I’d written describing my problem was gone. I’d have to start over. Have you had a similar experience using chat for customer support?
Anyway, I was less than pleased with the service provided by customer support. It didn’t feel very supportive at all. Day’s later I’m still waiting for a resolution.
When we are frustrated and at times infuriated by inadequate service it’s often due to a lack of responsiveness.
Being responsive looks and feels different. Customer support acknowledges your long wait. Customer support acknowledges that this is the fourth time you’ve contacted them regarding the issue.
Responsiveness is about paying attention to the context of the other person. For you, it’s your clients and potential clients. What can you do to help these people feel heard, understood, and seen?
It was a small thing. As I was returning a rental car I mentioned that there was a discrepancy in the paperwork between the indicated fuel and what was in the tank when I got the car. Her response, “I’m sorry that wasn’t more accurate.” Then as she wrapped up the car return she handed me a card offering a discount on a future rental. It was a small acknowledgment that the experience was just a little short of the ideal. They wanted to do better for their clients and this was a visible way of saying we’d like to have another opportunity to show you we can get it right.
What are you doing to be responsive? How could you be more responsive?