Customer Service as a Cornerstone

This week is Customer Service Appreciation week and also marks the beginning of the fourth quarter of what has been a tough year. Personally, and professionally, we’ve all dealt with more than we bargained for in 2020. Though when I think of a group of people that have weathered the metaphorical storms of 2020 and kept our business on solid ground, I think of our frontline employees, who may not have “customer service” in their job title but service our customers each and every day.  

These frontline employees who either virtually or in-person, met our customers as the first point of contact when they were confused, stressed or — let’s be honest — at times, scared. These members of our organization — speaking for not only AFC but also all of KAR Global — provided resources and information to our customers on a daily basis including on some of the hardest days our industry has seen. They were and are there for our customers.

When you lead with people-first as AFC and KAR Global do, relationships and human-to-human interactions quickly become a cornerstone of your organization and only grow stronger over time. We owe a lot to our frontline employees who serve our customers every day, but my message is simple: say thank you.

If you’re a leader, say thank you to your team that represents your business more than anyone else and serves your customers day-in and day-out, through the good times and the tough times. And when you interact with customer service representatives — this week especially — say thank you. Studies consistently find that team members who are shown they are valued are more satisfied in their jobs.* A little appreciation and gratitude can go a long way for everyone.

So, while always deserving of their own week to be acknowledged and thanked, there’s something about a week of appreciation in the home stretch of 2020 for a group of individuals that have shouldered a lot this year, that makes the week feel even more special.

* Gurchiek, Kathy. “Thank You: Powerful Words That Show Appreciation.” SHRM, 1 Mar. 2016.

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