Visionary 360 Blog

Jumping the line; how being nice can cost you.

Your favorite concert is finally coming to town and for the last few hours a group of your best mates have been standing in line for tickets.  Finally, you can see the box office window, and relief calms your anxiety.   A blue car pulls up, the occupant gets out of the car and walks straight to the box office window, zipping in front of the next person.  They purchase their tickets and leave, leaving everyone’s jaws open.

Back at the office, it is a normal day of troubleshooting client issues when your phone rings, it’s Elizabeth from the title company and her desktop printer is not working.  She would like instant support from you, and even though you are already knee deep in another ticket you nicely stop and work on her issue.

Both stories have a lot in common, yet while many do not realize it, we allow the box office story to happen daily within our own companies.  What do both stories have in common you may ask?  When Elizabeth calls for instant support, she is the occupant of the blue car.  You become the box office ticket official and allow the instant support to happen.  You might think or say that the company that Elizabeth is from has purchased the highest agreement and should instantly get service, if that is the case then great for Elizabeth, however the rest of the patient (Box office ticket line patrons) ticket holders are still waiting.

You see, your average client puts in a ticket, just as they have been taught during their on-boarding and patiently waits for their issue to be resolved.  Setting aside guaranteed SLA’s, Elizabeth jumped in front of all the available lines, making the rest of the current ticket holders to wait even more.  Is this fair?  Of course not, yet many of us do this daily, but not on purpose, it’s typically because we don’t know how to say no and or we have such a big heart we want to please everyone all the time, but in the end it really comes down to saying no… you need to wait your turn.

Support should not be fastest in front of others wins, it should be first in, first out.  Even with agreement holders which are bound by an SLA, yes prioritizing is even more of a key whereas you should look at whom else is already in the system, with the timer counting.  Performing instant service for Elizabeth might have been an extremely nice thing to do, it’s just that the rest of the story is that the network printer six foot was working which eliminated any instant emergency, it was just inconvenience for her to get up.  Had Elizabeth had zero printers available and this was a make or break for a million dollar bid, that would of changed the priority level, however this was not the case and in the end another patient client waited yet longer to get their issue resolved.

But how can this really cost us you ask?  It is proven that multi-tasking is not efficient and a big-time waste; trying to please everyone falls into the same realm.  Eventually if you consistently only handle instant phone calls or email requests, your clients will either get upset and look for another provider or they will learn the trick.  There is no way to simply manage these types of calls.  In the fire department we call this a mutual aid request as we have run out of available resources to handle the current incidents.  Stick to using a dispatch protocol, send all calls to the dispatcher.  Your dispatcher is the heart of your service department as they know all and see all.  They can decipher if someone is truly a priority (They have heard it all) and at any given moment they can tell you where your ticket load stands.  Allowing a dispatcher to handle, schedule and adjust schedules will solve more issues than we can discuss in a simple blog.  Should you not have a dispatching method in place,  check out our white paper “Dispatch & Service Ticket Processing” guide available for download.

If you constantly have clients emailing you or your service staff members directly, take a look at Email reConnectorEmail reConnector allows the perfect ticket creation from a simple forward of that direct email.  Contact us for an exclusive discount offer too good to publicize!