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Interviewing Job Candidates? Consider These Questions

Friday, June 1, 2007

Superior customer service is all about attitude—and there's no better time to determine an employee's service mindset than during the interview process. Chip Bell, customer service consultant, speaker and co-author of the newly released, "Managing Knock Your Socks Off Customer Service (2nd Edition)," shares these customer service- themed interview questions.

Seven Magic Questions for Spotting a Service Attitude in an Applicant

1. What does giving the customer “superior service” mean to you?

2. Let me give you a typical customer service situation we get at XYZ Gift Store. (Describe the situation.) How would you handle this type of situation? (Look for attitude, not the perfect solution.)

3. Tell me about a time when you successfully balanced the best interests of the company with the best interests of a customer?

4. We all get weary from time to time from the pressure of dealing with people. What do you do to renew yourself so you can stay “up,” fresh and enthusiastic on the job?

5. I know I sometimes get uptight when I have to deal with an irate customer. You’ve had experience with difficult customers – can you offer an example that illustrates how you might typically handle them?

6. What do you like most about being in customer service?

7. If you were asked to coach someone brand new to serving customers, what advice would you give that person? What are the dos and don’ts you would tell them?

Reprinted with permission from: "Managing Knock Your Socks Off Service" by Chip R. Bell and Ron Zemke (NY: AMACOM Books, 2007).

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