Helpful Expertise #2: Responsiveness

Set a response commitment to give your customers a clear standard to reference when they're waiting for follow-up.

Jim Stein
Published Date: May 7, 2024

Responsiveness is the perceived time it takes for your team to act on promised and implied commitments. By definition these implied commitments are unspoken and often assumed by custom, like returning a phone call within two days. Since there’s no official rule of response times per channel between company and customer, unless you specifically set a response commitment, each customer judges your responsiveness subjectively based on their individual sense of what the standard should be for the channel of communication and the nature of the commitment.

 

As examples, a customer expects a faster response for a text than a mailed letter and for an act perceived to be simple (i.e. checking to see if a part is in stock) than a more complex commitment like the creation of a custom design. So, your customer’s expectations of your response time are greatly affected by the channel you use and the perceived complexity of the act you’re committing for them.

 

Explicitly setting a response commitment is a good solution because you’ve created a clear standard to be judged against. Then, you’ll need to meet or beat your declared standard even if it’s quite fast. If a customer was promised a phone call back in 15 minutes and receives a call back in two hours, they won’t be happy, whereas if they were promised a call back the next day and receive their call back the same day, they will judge you as very responsive.

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Helpful Expertise #2: Responsiveness

Jim Stein

Responsiveness is the perceived time it takes for your team to act on promised and implied commitments. By definition these implied commitments are unspoken and often assumed by custom, like returning a phone call within two days. Since there’s no official rule of response times per channel between company and customer, unless you specifically set a response commitment, each customer judges your responsiveness subjectively based on their individual sense of what the standard should be for the channel of communication and the nature of the commitment.