Originally published at http://advice.careerbuilder.com/posts/professional-people-person-7-tips-for-succeeding-in-a-customer-service-career.
Professional People Connector: 6 Tips for Succeeding As A Legal Recruiter
It’s no secret that a succeeding in a career as a Legal Recruiter requires you to work long hours addressing the demands and high expectations of clients and candidates. However, a career as a Legal Recruiter also offers rewards — both personal and financial.
It’s hard to top getting a note or other recognition from candidates and clients who recognize your hard work on their behalf. Here are seven tips to help you give exceptional legal recruiting customer service that’ll earn you rewards for your hard work.
Understand Your Client’s Expectations
The conventional wisdom about putting yourself in the other person’s boots, stilettos, or sandals certainly applies in legal recruiting to providing high-quality customer service. First, think about your business from the customer’s perspective. What would you like to see from a legal recruiter?
Understanding your candidate’s or your client’s expectations helps you begin to anticipate what will satisfy him or her. It also enables you to find potential pitfalls that could lead to a disappointing experience.
Recognize You’re an Ambassador
In a legal recruiting career, you’re on the front line of making candidates and clients happy and addressing their concerns. That means a great deal of responsibility rests on your shoulders. Pay attention to your values and mission. They’re not just cheesy, feel-good words someone scrawled on the back of a napkin. These statements differentiate your company, lay out the corporate culture, and direct employees toward a common goal. Live these statements as you interact with customers or guests to make sure you’re reinforcing your company’s brand. This helps build loyalty that leads to repeat business.
Give Candidates and Clients Respect
Without either group, you wouldn’t have a job. That fact alone is a good reason for having an attitude of respect and patience when dealing with candidates and clients. When you face someone who is customer, remember that he or she needs a sympathetic ear, not someone who relentlessly defends the company or is argumentative. Listen, empathize, and begin to craft a plan to address their grievance.
Handling someone who is angry with respect not only wins many of them back but may convert them into cheerleaders for you. Look at someone who is angry as an opportunity to show them how much your company cares about its clients. While there will be a few who will never be happy no matter what you do, most people appreciate being treated with respect and being offered a reasonable remedy.
Use the CARP Method
Once you’ve listened and demonstrated respect, use the CARP approach to defuse the situation. CARP stands for control, acknowledge, refocus, and problem-solve. To control the situation, show that you’re capable of handling the guest’s problem. Next, acknowledge the problem verbally. Begin to refocus the discussion and frame the situation in a more positive light. As a Legal Recruiter, offer to problem-solve so that your candidate or your client feels you are looking for the correct response.
This systematic approach, coupled with respect for those involved is an excellent way to bring peace to the conversation and create a positive outcome. You’ll increase the chances that someone will use your legal recruiting services again.
In person, clear communication requires you to maintain good eye contact, speak directly to the issues the customer raises, and listen. Don’t argue with customers or escalate a conversation. Your goal is to keep the discussion on an even keel and offer a resolution.
If you deal with people online, it’s even more critical that you practice clear communication. That means addressing issues directly and in a timely manner. If you must send automatic responses to customers through email, make it informal in tone and explicitly state how quickly someone will contact them.
On the phone, practice active listening and don’t interrupt the customer. If you’re unable to help the customer yourself, offer to connect him or her to the person who’s able to solve the problem, whether it’s a supervisor or someone in a different department.
Be a Professional
Being a legal recruiting professional requires you to uphold your brand and your company’s values. As a Legal Recruiter, avoid saying bad things about others. In addition, keep snide comments about anyone or anything to yourself. Reinforce the idea that you’re approachable and friendly.
By following these tips, you can seriously up your game as a legal recruiting professional and set yourself apart from other legal recruiters.
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Are you a legal recruiter? Do your personal and professional skills pass the test? Do you need some assistance in improving your client or candidate interview persona? If so, contact a Career Counselor with Lexacount Search’s Career Consulting Services. If you are interested in learning more about finance and accounting industry opportunities, contact a Search Consultant from Lexacount Search’s Finance Group. Or, if you are interested in attorney or other roles in the legal industry, contact a Search Consultant from Lexacount Search’s Legal Group.