Each year The Conference Board publishes survey results of the Top CEO Challenges for global organizations. In 2014 the top four challenges are:

1. Human Capital
2. Customer Relationships
3. Innovation
4. Operational Excellence

The Conference Board says business leaders are seeking to drive growth by “focusing on people, performance, reconnecting with customers, and reshaping the culture of work. They see a renewed commitment to customers, innovation, and the corporate brand.”

What are the major challenges leaders and organizations must overcome to build a competitive advantage with a strong and sustainable service culture? New video – 2.5 minutes. Watch it now.

Q: In your opinion, what are some key differences in Indian service culture compared to global practices?
A: The volume of people in India both – as service providers and customers – has an impact on the way people think about service in the country. With such an enormous number of available people, there is a common sense that talent is replaceable, and customers are, too.

So employers, don’t put as much effort into attracting, keeping and growing their employees as their counterparts do in other developed countries. There seems to be an ease or an acceptance that people come and go…and someone new is always coming. But over a long term the danger of this view is that people do come and go, and the human resource department focuses on getting more on new hires rather than retaining the best people as colleagues.

A similar problem exists in relation to providing customer service. With so many people to serve as potential customers, companies don’t put in
as much effort to retain the loyalty of those they have. Continuous customer churn tends to be the norm, while providing truly excellent customer service is the rare exception.

Here are the Six Most Popular Service Blog Posts of the year (so far). Each provides content and context with tools and tips you can apply right away. Take these now and share them with the leaders in your organization.

Where is the right place to start a service improvement program inside your organization? The answer may seem obvious. You start with team members who sell to and serve your customers. After all, customers are the ones who buy your products and use your services. They come back when they are happy and complain when

Today we use sophisticated technologies to learn a great deal about our customers. We track what they like, what they spend, what they search for, where they go, and how often they return. Yet despite all this new “big data” and the insights it can deliver, customers all over the world still appreciate “Old School Customer Service”.

These four “Old School Customer Service” techniques are time-tested, and they work as well today as they have for generations.

Article by Paul Godfrey, CPI Media Group Service is simply the most important differentiator your SME has. It’s the DNA that permeates everything you do – and it can either make your business the indisputable provider of choice, or a company that’s perpetually struggling to retain customers. Is your business a service champion, rich with sparkle,

The recent Customer Experience Conference in New York was one of the best I have attended, so far. The speakers and ideas presented were world-class. Enjoy this collection of quotes and notes from The Conference Board’s annual event.

1. “Can you summarize your service strategy in 35 words or less, and would your colleagues put it the same way?”

This question stopped me in my tracks. Everyone at UP! Your Service is committed to customers, to service, and to each other. But I’m not sure our team would pass this test with flying colors. Would yours?

Mistaken marketing professionals believe that customer service is an operational issue. They think marketing’s job is to bring customers to the company and customer service is important only after their marketing magic is done. These misguided professionals focus with great intensity on brand building, advertising and promotions, but ignore the daily discipline of actually delivering excellent service.

Mistaken marketing professionals also believe that building a strong service culture is someone else’s job. They think that marketing focuses externally on prospects and customers, while culture is an internal matter, and therefore the responsibility of someone else, usually their colleagues in Human Resources.

These beliefs are outdated. This way of thinking is obsolete. Modern marketing professionals understand the vital role of service. And they understand that building a strong -service culture is a conversation that Marketing should lead.

Service is no longer a “nice to have”. It has become an absolute commercial necessity. In the past, giving good service was a merely a hygiene factor, something you must provide to avoid getting complaints and to keep the customers you’ve already got.