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Managing Knock Your Socks Off Service
by Ron Zemke and Chip Bell, softcover, 136 pages, 1992, $17.95



In Delivering Knock Your Socks Off Service, Ron Zemke gave service-providers a crash course in how to care for customers.

Now, in Managing Knock Your Socks Off Service, Zemke and Chip Bell show managers how to make exemplary service "happen" in their organization over and over again.

As Zemke and Bell point out, having excellent service-providers is only half of the service battle. For without support and appreciation for a good job, and the right systems to deliver what they've promised customers, service-providers soon wither and die -- or quit. And worse, customers go off in search of care.

Written for front-line managers, supervisors, and owners of small companies, Managing Knock Your Socks Off Service shows how to create good service on a day-to-day, real-time, every-time basis. Zemke and Bell present eight clear goals for ensuring superior service:

  1. Find and retain quality people

  2. Know your customers intimately

  3. Focus your unit on a specific organizational purpose

  4. Create easy-to-do-business-with delivery systems

  5. Train -- and support -- employees

  6. Involve and empower employees

  7. Recognize and reward good performance

  8. Set the tone and lead the way through your personal example

In spirited detail, Managing Knock Your Socks Off Service presents practical ways to achieve excellence in each of these vital areas. Chapters are filled with quotes from service standard-setters, such as Marriott, Federal Express, and Southwest Airlines.

According to Zemke and Bell: "The corporate hero-of the 1990's will be the manager who understands the design, development, and delivery of high quality service." Managing Knock Your Socks off Service will help create a new generation of service-quality heroes.

Table of Contents

Imperative 1: Find and Retain Quality People

  • Select Slowly...and Hire Carefully
  • Paying Attention to Employee Retention
  • What Leads to Longevity?

Imperative 2: Know Your Customers Intimately

  • Good Service Is Whatever the Customer Says It Is
  • Good Enough...Isn't
  • Listening Is a Contact Sport
  • A Complaining Customer Is Your Best Friend
  • Little Things Mean a Lot
  • Building Service Partnerships

Imperative 3: Focus on "Purpose"

  • The Power of Purpose
  • Getting Your Focus Down on Paper
  • A Service Strategy Statement Sampler

Imperative 4: Make Your Service Delivery System ETDBW (Easy to Do Business With)

  • Bad Systems Stop Good People
  • Fix the System, Not the People
  • Measure and Manage From the Customer's Point of View
  • Add Value: The Milk and Cookies Principle
  • Make Recovery a Point of Pride...and a Part of Your System
  • If It Ain't Broke...Fix It

Imperative 5: Train and Support

  • Start on Day One (When Their Hearts and Minds Are Malleable)
  • Training Creates Competence, Confidence, and Longevity
  • Making Training Stick
  • Thinking and Acting Like a Coach

Imperative 6: Involve and Empower

  • Empowerment Is Not a Gift
  • Removing the Barriers to Empowerment

Imperative 7: Recognize, Reward, and Celebrate Success

  • Recognition and Reward: Fueling the Fires of Service Success
  • Feedback: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner of Champions
  • Interpersonal Feedback
  • Celebrate Success

Imperative 8: Your Most Important Management Mission: Set the Tone and Lead the Way

  • Observation Is More Powerful Than Conversation
  • Reinventing Your Service System
  • The Journey From Boss to Leader

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Last modified January 17, 2012