Need Help Resolving Service Issues? Channel Your Inner Toddler

  By Victoria Kenward  |    Sunday April 13, 2020

Category: Expert Advice, Technology


"Why do people get sick?"

"Why do I have to eat vegetables?"

"Why don't we have wings?"

Toddlers ask questions like these all the time. For them, asking "why" stems from their natural curiosity and desire to understand the world around them.

Why am I writing a customer service post about "why" questions?

When customers are frustrated or confused, they may vent or present their challenges in ways that aren't clearly defined. For your staffing firm, asking "why" questions internally – multiple times and in multiple ways – can help you get to the root cause of service issues and resolve them more effectively.

So, if you want to deliver shareworthy service resolution, channel your inner toddler!

Use the "Five Whys" technique to get to the heart of service issues:

Jeff Toister recently shared a great explanation of this technique in this blog post; here's a quick overview of the method:

The Five Whys technique involves asking your team a progressive series of open-ended questions to properly diagnose the underlying cause of a service issue. By asking smart probing questions, you and your team can gain insights that allow you to solve problems at the source - so that they don't happen again.

How do the "Five Whys" work in staffing customer service?

Here's one example of how you might apply it to an employer who's frustrated at how long it's taking you to fill a specific job order:

Why #1: Why do you think it's taking longer than normal to recruit qualified machinists?
Team: I don't know; we're just coming up short.

Why #2: Why do you think we're coming up short?

Team: I don't know; this client is a great company to work for! I can't imagine why someone wouldn't want to join their team. And all the job duties are spelled out in the job post.

Why #3: I agree that they're a great company to work for. If the culture and the job itself are great, why do you think someone would pass on this job - and apply to another one?

Client: Maybe we're not doing enough to tell them all the great things that come with being an employee of our client's company.

Why #4: Why do you think that type of information didn't make it into the job posting?

Client: Their department managers don't seem to put much thought into sending us complete information.

Why #5: Why do you think that's the case?

Client: They're really busy - and they don't think like a potential candidate; they think primarily about what they need the employee to do on the job.

There's the "aha" moment you were waiting for! Sometimes, you need to ask variations of the same question to figure out the real issue - and determine the best way to address it. In this scenario, the technique could lead to a productive conversation about how your team can obtain higher quality information from busy managers to help "sell" their job openings to potential candidates.

Obviously, you may not need five questions to get to the heart of a service problem. The big takeaway is to be patient and creative, so you properly diagnose and effectively resolve customers' issues.

And that's what Shareworthy Service is all about!


Editor's note:

Vicki is our queen of shareworthy service. She is 100% committed to making everything we do a “WOW” for our clients. She’s also a tech wiz and process guru who is responsible for some of our most innovative web applications, including HaleyMail, our Job Board software and our Talent Showcase product. With her degree in Information Systems and leadership training from Xerox, Vicki’s systematic approach to work and amazing attention to detail are a perfect compliment to the rest of our team’s more “creative” approach.

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