The New Science of Customer Service

Building a Sustainable Competitive Advantage

Course Overview

This session will help participants to efficiently increase service levels and customer satisfaction, while effectively locating and resolving customer service issues. The program will provide a methodology to capture more profitable sales from a growing loyal customer base. Service is a critical component of a distributor’s value proposition. Even so, many distributors struggle to explain their service value and what defines excellent customer service. Since margin reduction continues to pressure distributor profitability, exceeding expectations by delivering a higher level of service than what is valued by the customer is difficult, if not impossible to sustain. Therefore, a thorough understanding throughout the entire organization is needed of the service requirements of the customer and the definition and components of customer service.


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Who Should Attend

  • Executive Management
  • Business Development Managers
  • Sales and Marketing, Customer Service Managers
  • Branch and Regional Managers
  • Process Improvement Professionals
  • Business Analytics Team
  • Distribution Management Professionals

What can you do immediately after the course

  • Retain customers for life
  • Make customer service your competitive advantage
  • Identify critical drivers of customer service
  • Determine service strategies for each customer type
  • Set a structured process for service recovery
  • Apply best practices to build a strong customer service culture
  • Strengthen your brand and value proposition


"We know the direction and changes we need to make to differentiate us from our competitors. Knowing and understanding our customers expectations allowed us to quickly focus our attention on the areas we needed to improve immediately. It strengthened our customer service team and our ability to provide the service our customers expected."

Darrell Johnson, VP Customer Service, Womack Machine Supply Company

Course Outline

Motivation and Trends

Understanding customer needs and expectations for companies at different points in their business cycle in today’s competitive market is essential. Evidence of successful customer service strategies will be provided.

Service Growth and Differentiation

As firms focus on services, it requires a fresh approach to build new sales, marketing and operational strategies to go to market. A model to differentiate based on service will be discussed.

Satisfaction-importance Matrix and Lifetime Calculations

Selecting service requirements given customer needs are critical to deploy capital and other resources. Context and calculations to assist decision making are provided.

Design Strategic Target Objective – Customer Satisfaction Drivers and Focus

Outcomes of business transactions and best techniques to influence customers based on their behavior will be described.

Best Practices of Service Recovery

Effective recoveries build a lasting impression on customers. Examples of these will be narrated to build customers for life.

Building Service Standards – Service Innovation and Marketing

Methods to develop service standards derived from expectations and capabilities are elucidated using a case study from industry.

Service Profit Chain- Drivers of Employee Satisfaction and Impact

Employee satisfaction drivers are analyzed. Its impact on service is described.

Building Blocks of Service Culture

Culture is hard to build but it influences customer service immensely. Stories of such culture are shared with the audience. Influence of size and business models on customer service is unquestionable. Practices from industries to tackle such unique scenarios are examined.

Empowerment and Flexibility

Employees’ ability to identify and resolve customer issues can make a distinct impact on the customer. Customer service goals are a topic of discussion.

Locate, Test and Select Suitable Talent

Choosing the right workforce, who control delivery of service is a difficult task which needs to be addressed. Training methods and frequency will be a discussed in this program.

Course Packet – Tools and materials

What will you receive at the program?

What do you need to bring?

Slides as a course booklet

List of key customer service challenges at your firm

Workbook for exercises and activity


Customer Stratification Book




Course Instructors

Barry Lawrence, Norm Clark, Jay Johnson, Mark Johnson

Course Timings

Day 1: 8:00am-5:00pm
Day 2: 8:00am-noon