Wednesday, March 21, 2012

How much should customer service guys be paid?

Why not the same as paid to sales or marketing guys? I am talking about the guys on the shop-floor. The guys who carry 'Help' tags on their chest.

Marketing guys makes promises. The manner of making the promise or the promise itself captures the prospects' attention. But who fulfills those promises?

Let's say Mississippi Earrings advertises. So it makes a promise, implicit or explicit. When that advertisement pulls in prospects at the retail shop, who fulfills or tries to fulfill the promise? The person on the shop-floor. If this person behaves obnoxiously, all's gone.

It applies to hospitals too. After gathering attention, who fulfills a big part of the promise? Doctors? Ward-boys, nurses, helpers?

In an educational institute, who fulfills the promise? The ad that captures attention? Or the teachers in the class?

At Pantaloons? Ad or the shop-floor exec?

On most occasions, I see a massive difference between a typical marketing person and a shop-floor exec. Someone might say, "But there's a difference in quality/skills." True! In fact, people hired as shop-floor execs aren't necessarily the greatest talkers or thinkers or problem-solvers. And these are the people who fulfill a big part of the promise. So why hire people with such poor skills? (Standard argument, shortage of quality manpower!)

Having chatted with prospects online and stayed on the shop-floor at Mississippi, I reckon,  delivery on the promises carries equal weightage, if not more.

Assuming that similar guys are put in charge of marketing and customer service, who would get more? Why is there such a discrepancy between remunerations?

Guess, in the entire sequence of conducting business, capturing attention of prospects is the first activity. Then follows all other things. So, 'first' wins. But we've seen the tall claims and, so often, we've experienced the delivery against those claims.