15 Life Lessons from a Customer Service Professional

Customer Service is what I do all day every day. I am a Customer Service Representative for a biotech company, work as a server at one the best steak houses in San Diego, and am a Game Day Representative for the San Diego Chargers.

I specialize in making people happy.

A lot of my days, I feel like this when dealing with a difficult customer…

minions

But I digress.

Conflict resolution is basically my thang, and I am good at it.

I started working in the restaurant industry all the way back in high school, and continued on while in college and after earning my degree. I haveΒ alwaysΒ had a restaurant gig as a side hustle, because it’s basically impossible to make as great of money for so few hours worked in any other capacity. I have been working in fine dining for the past three years, and I have much prefered it to any other restaurant atmosphere I have ever worked in. I started working for the Chargers two football seasons ago, and it really is as awesome and as exciting as it sounds. Sorry if I just made you jealous. My position at the biotech company is my full time deal, and my main focus.

Whew.

My experiences have outfitted me with numerous skills, stories, and lessons learned. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Admittedly, sometimes I get really tired of dealing with people. That’s the honest truth. The general public can be challenging and demanding!

I thought it would be entertaining to share with you, my dear readers, some of the situations I have encountered during my time as a Customer Service Professional (guru, if you like!), and the lessons I have taken away from it. I swear I’m not bitter.

15 Life Lessons Learned in Customer Service Land

  1. It IS my job to anticipate your needs.
  2. It is NOT my job to be your personal punching bag.
  3. In regard to the following questions: Is my steak cooked right? Are you sure? How do you know? YES, I AM ABSOLUTELY POSITIVELY SURE, YES I KNOW, AND HERE IS WHY: It is my JOB to ensure that your steak has arrived to your table exactly as ordered, following a very specific and detailed process, about which I in no way have time or patience to explain to you without sounding like a complete smart ass and quite possibly losing my job. EAT IT AND BE HAPPY WITH ITS PERFECTION.
  4. Everyone wants to be a VIP (very important guest/person). But this is simply not possible. I am sorry. The good news is, the more money you spend, the closer you will get!
  5. Everyone wants everything for free. This is an absolute truth. This is where I feel it’s important to remind you that I am NOT a magician.
  6. I do not have the ability to give you free EVERYTHING. I can, however, hook you up with some very nice things if you get on my good side and/or play your cards right. I will do anything for a guest I like.
  7. Your opinion for the chef on how you can improve his recipe is not appreciated. No, I will not pass along the message.
  8. We do not spill on you or make mistakes because we want to make you mad, because we are being careless, or because we are secretly out to get you. I would rather spill anything on myself first rather than on you. This situation happened to me when a guest suddenly backed up into me while I was holding a tray of cocktails, and rather than letting it fall on her, I had two full glasses of champagne dump down my front instead. The champagne shower wasn’t as sexy as the rap videos make it out to be. If you were wondering, the guest did not notice this happened and I smelled like a booze hound for the rest of the evening.
  9. If you say you “know the owner”, you definitely don’t know the owner.
  10. Just because I am serving you food does not mean I am uneducated, unmotivated, and not pursuing my career.
  11. If you are cold calling a company, do not expect some smooth talking to get you straight through to the CEO. I see you coming a mile away and will not let this happen. Ever. Also, look up the CEO’s name if you are going to call. Otherwise, I am just embarrassed for you.
  12. It is my job to answer your questions patiently and kindly. It is NOT my job to put up with verbal abuse.
  13. If you lie and say that you are “returning” a phone call to a higher up, wasting both their AND my time when I then try to get in touch with them, it is the ultimate disrespect. There is a moral code to follow for sales calls, and lying isn’t part of it.
  14. Positive feedback and kindness from a customer really are pure gold. A few nice words can go a long way! Thank you to all of you who have ever asked about my day, or how I am doing.
  15. I really DO care about your problems, your happiness, and your satisfaction. These are my top priority, and that is why I do what I do. I genuinely want to help you.

2

Have you worked in customer service or the restaurant industry and have any stories you would like to share? I would love to hear them!

xoxo

Sarah

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3 thoughts on “15 Life Lessons from a Customer Service Professional

  1. Ha … I don’t think I would do well in a customer service job. I did work at my local library for about six years and that was about as close as I got.

    New subscriber to your blog btw, I’m signed up for your emails. Found your site from one of the BlogHer posts, I think.

    Liked by 1 person

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