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The Science/Art of Customer Service

The Science and Art of Customer Service Blog

I was at a restaurant the other day with a colleague. Mind you this is a nice restaurant and I don't really do nice restaurants because I'm a tightwad. At this nice restaurant, he ordered the filet *medium rare.* My guy is very picky about his steaks. Up until this point in the meal, everything has been on point, like really quite good but when the steak comes out it's done medium well. My buddy is very non-confrontational and planned to just eat the steak and go on his way. I didn't even notice the doneness because why would I? It's his steak. When the waitress comes back to check on us 3 minutes later she noticed that he'd cut into the steak and it was overdone. She politely asked if he'd like a new one to which he accepted. She rushed back to the kitchen and returned within 5 minutes with the new perfect piece of meat. It was shockingly fast. We finish the meal and the waitress brings out 2 desserts for us unprompted. I never say no to sweets. When the check comes, my buddy's steak was comped and the desserts were also on the house. We didn't even make a fuss about any of it but the restaurant handled it with such grace that it got me thinking that my opinion of this place is now better as a result.

They made a mistake and my opinion was improved by the way they handled it more than if the mistake would have never happened. Our business at S1 Technology™ is a service business and net promoter score is our north star. Here are some of the things we do to give that same warm and fuzzy feeling to our customers.

We Swallow Our Pride:

At S1 Technology, the first thing we do when we stumble upon a misstep is to swallow our pride. No one likes to admit they're wrong. But I’ll tell you what people like even less: folks who can't admit they're wrong. Like that restaurant, we acknowledge our error before the customer even has to point it out. Trust me, it's better to eat a bit of humble pie now, rather than choke on your own pride later.

We Do Our Best to Fix It Fast:

It's simple: we hustle to solve problems. That restaurant brought a new steak within five minutes. Why? They valued our time. They knew we'd be unhappy waiting another 20 minutes for a new steak. In the tech world, we can't always provide a quick fix. But we make it a point to set accurate expectations and keep the customer in the loop throughout.

We Surprise and Delight:

Free desserts. A surprise that not only sweetened our palates but also our opinion of the restaurant. Surprise and delight is a classic business tactic for a reason: it works. We try to incorporate it at S1 Technology. Maybe it's a thoughtful message, a check-in call, or offering a feature upgrade at no extra cost. Small gestures that have the power to transform a potentially negative experience into a positive one.

We Compensate for the Inconvenience:

They didn't charge us for the steak or the desserts. In business terms, this is what we call a service recovery paradox. A complaint handled well can actually result in a more satisfied customer than if the problem hadn't occurred in the first place. At S1 Technology, we make sure that our customers feel valued and heard. We acknowledge their inconvenience with our EOS guarantee that if we miss our 10-minute response time SLA we’ll give you a credit.

We Learn From Our Mistakes:

While it’s key to fix mistakes promptly and compensate the customer, it's also essential to learn from these errors. We use these opportunities to refine our products, improve our services, and even revise our business processes. We then create knowledge base articles and standard operating procedures to never let it happen again.

We Go Beyond Transactions:

When we look at our customers, we don't see dollar signs or invoices. We see relationships. Relationships built on trust and understanding. This is exactly why our Net Promoter Score is over 90.

S1 Technology NPS Score

We want to know if our customers trust us enough to recommend us. The stronger these relationships, the higher our score.

So there you have it. Our take on turning lemons into lemonade at S1 Technology. We mess up. We fix it. We compensate. We learn. We build relationships. It might be a long way to walk, but the destination? Worth it. Every single time.

So next time you're at a restaurant and the steak isn't cooked right, watch how they handle it. There might be a business lesson hiding in their missteak.

And remember, a happy customer might tell a friend; an unhappy customer will tell the world. That's why, at S1 Technology, we aim to keep the world from hearing anything but great things. Our goal is to create stories that are told as a testament to our commitment, not as warnings.

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