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How do you lose 82% of your customers? Bad customer service.


No one really wants to lose 82% of your customers, right? They do if they have bad customer service.

A recent survey published in the Customer Experience Impact report found that 82% of consumers said that they stopped doing business with a company because of a bad customer service experience. No business wants to lose customers right? So why do so many lose business because of bad customers service? You don’t ever set out to treat customers bad, right?

Bad customer service happens because we lack vision.

Bad customer service happens when we lose sight of what’s important for great customer service and awesome customer experiences. It just happens. We don’t set out to do it, but for one reason or another it just does. The problem lies in the rampant bad customer service in any organization. Rare bad service moments, though not ok, can be dealt with through good service recovery. Frequent bad customer service demonstrates that effective customer service management is absent in the organization.

Tim Sanchez at DeliverBliss recently wrote about the 12 reasons why bad customer service happens and how we can all fall victim to the “It’s not my problem” mentality from time to time. As I read the 12 excuses customer service team members give for bad service, I had two thoughts:

  • “Where’s the Customer Service Manager?”
  • “Why is a company paying a manager for customer service manager for nothing?”

I think the 12 reasons are all real reasons people in customer service often give for poor service, but the real blame falls on customer service managers for not properly creating a proper customer service vision and training and motivating team members to see the vision and perform the actions required to put that vision into effect.

The 12 terrible excuses given for bad customer service:

  1. It isn’t part of your job description.
  2. You’re overworked and underpaid.
  3. The customer is not always right.
  4. You had a terrible day and just need to be alone.
  5. You don’t have the right tools to deliver great service.
  6. Your customers just want a good deal, they don’t care about the experience.
  7. The customer is unreasonable and rude.
  8. Another department is responsible for what the customer wanted.
  9. Your company hasn’t made customer service a priority.
  10. Your bonus isn’t based on customer service, so why spend any time on it.
  11. The customer didn’t complain, so they must have been happy.
  12. You had too much to do and other people were waiting. You couldn’t spend all that time with just one customer.

Eliminate the Reasons by Re-working Customer Service Priorities

Are these reasons false? Not necessarily. But even if the excuse is true, it’s never valid for providing bad customer service.

One of the most effective things customer service managers and leaders can do is to re-structure customer service and customer-facing team member responsibilities and priorities to focus around the customer experience. Tie individual customer service team performance to the items in 12 customer service excuses to eliminate the reasons for bad service.

Make the opposite of the excuse the priority for customer service and the customer experience and team members will encourage team members to take the time, effort, and energy to provide the best customer service experience possible. Each and every time. Who wouldn’t want that?

Too much is riding on providing a great customer service and ensuring the best customer experience. Remember…

82% of consumers said that they stopped doing business with a company because of a bad customer service experience.

86 percent of U.S. adults will pay more for a better customer experience

You’re better off sending the person having a bad day home and keep them away from your customers. Or at least, pull them away from working for customers for a while and help them regroup mentally before jumping back in the customer service mix. It’s better lose one customer service person for a day, then to lose a customer for a lifetime.

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  • Supra

    i have never ever had such horrible and horrendous service from both customer service and management.i have been with out phone service for over a week-n-half (and counting) for something that i already paid for. I have used the phones of everyone i know (sense i don’t have service) to call boost mobile customer service. They are the rudes most unkind group of people working in such a big company. I spoken to customer service representative and management from Texas,California ,Caribbeans and God knows where else trying to rectify the problem for days now. I told them to give me a refund for the service they didn’t provide because i decide to break ties with boost and look for another provider. A rep offered me a decent deal to stay with them,(which was the wrong choice). It was a month of service free,a 30% off discount,plus a $20 off offer on choosen android phones. When i decided to redeem the deal they offered me the following day,they didn’t want to honer the $20 off. So, i decide to just leave and looks for another provider.i ask for my money back and they said they couldn’t give it back my money even though i paid 2-3 days before not having service.they TOLD me,either you take what we give you or you can leave with no refund and no discount. I was between a rock and a hard place.the point is the principal of honoring the word Of the company and valuing there customer way better.once they new phone i was FORCE to purchase starts getting old and malfunctioning, you better believe am going to another provider and never ever doing business with them again.i will be sure to spread the word of the staff and management in a company called BOOSTMOBLE.THE INTERNET IS A POWERFULL SOURCE!!

  • Barbara Mckinney

    Hi Flavio. Thanks for sharing your great thoughts here. Customers nowadays would settle for companies who can give them the satisfaction that they needed. Competition is almost everywhere. This area is very important to get ahead of the game.

    Hahaha:) I also agree to this. “It’s better lose one customer service person for a day, then to lose a customer for a lifetime.”

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    Utilizing technology to improve customer service and the customer experience, we can create customer loyalty.

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