If You Want Me To Take Your Survey You’d Better Smile First

usps-logoThe expression “going postal” exists for a reason.  While it refers to some very tragic incidents from the past, it also points to a much larger issue regarding the service you can expect at the post office.  And before I go any further, I want to say that Eric, our mail carrier is the bomb.

I recently had reason to go to my local post office.  I love their various self-service options and use them as frequently as I can, but on this occasion, needed to buy something from a human being.  I hadn’t brought enough packaging tape with me!

The lady behind the counter helped me pay and at the end of the transaction, without smiling or so much as looking me in the eye, circled a box on my receipt and told me where I could go to complete a customer service survey.

As I’ve replayed this exchange in my head to try to make heads of tails of it, here are my questions:

  1. What’s The Incentive?- I would love to know if the USPS employees are incentivized in any way regarding surveys.  Based on the way I was asked to complete a survey, I would guess that employees might be incentivized for getting people to complete the survey and not on the actual score itself.
  2. Where’s The Pride?- Survey or not, aren’t we kind of missing the point of a customer satisfaction survey if we don’t take pride in our work as customer service professionals?  In most cases, the survey should be icing on the cake to tell you what you already know about your performance.  Of course, it hopefully has other bits of feedback constructive to improving the customer experience as well.
  3. Where’s My Smile?- If you’re going to ask a customer to go out of their way to complete a survey, you’d better send them out the door with a good feeling.  In the customer service training that preceded this encounter, did they train on the “how” or simply the “what” when it comes to delivering this message?

I made the mistake of shredding my receipt and did not look at the content of the survey.  Have you ever been asked to take a survey by the USPS?  Did they convince you to take it or did you walk out the door with a blegh sort of feeling about the whole exchange?

[custom_author=admin]

Jeremy Watkin is the Director of Customer Experience at FCR, the premiere provider of outsourced call center and business process solutions. He has more than 17 years of experience as a customer service and experience professional. He is co-founder of the Customer Service Life blog and a regular contributor. Jeremy has been recognized many times for his thought leadership. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn for more awesome customer service and experience insights.

3 comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *