Why Empathy Is Important In IT Service Providers
As defined by the Oxford Dictionary, empathy is the ability to understand another person’s feelings, experiences, etc. In our personal context of life, this is easy to understand and practice. But what we fail to realize is that empathy is just as essential in the business world. Empathy is what makes the business more human.
A game-changer in the business world
Consider these famous quotes –
“Empathy is one of our greatest tools of business that is most underused.”
“Empathy is the ultimate form of customer insight.”
These and many more such quotes from industry leaders have emphasized the need for empathy in running a business. As the IT services industry moves at a breakneck speed, a new product or service is probably being created as you read this article, to replace an existing one. So, what sets a service provider or a product apart from the rest? Empathy is that key differentiator that can make or break your business.
What it means to be an empathetic IT service Provider
The first step to being an empathetic service provider is to feel what the customer feels and walk their path in their shoes. To do this, you need to gain insights into what the customer really wants and provide the same to them. Empathy starts with an understanding of the customer needs, personalizing their experience, and finally resulting in customer satisfaction.
Empathy in the IT service industry can be implemented at various levels. The most obvious and possibly the more critical one is in customer service. In today’s competitive scenario, as businesses focus on providing unmatched customer experience, customer empathy is an equally important aspect that makes a huge difference to your business.
Imagine that an irate customer contacts the customer service department of your company. That call can be handled in 2 ways –
- The representative speaks in a matter-of-fact manner, collects all the details, helps the customer place a complaint, and suggests the next steps. Or,
- The customer service representative apologizes for the inconvenience caused, digs deeper to understand the issue, suggests ways to remedy the situation, and perhaps solves the issue on the call. Which approach do you think will appease the caller more and make them your loyal customer? There you have it – the second and more empathetic approach!
Why Empathy is Important
While an empathetic approach gives a feel-good factor to the customers, there are many more tangible benefits that an IT service provider can realize by using empathy.
Builds brand loyalty
A product and its quality may be the main aspect of any business to succeed; empathy can help your business build brand loyalty. By understanding and catering to customer-specific needs and hence connecting to their emotions, you can acquire and retain customers in the long run.
Better market reach and increased sales
As customers start identifying empathy as a driving principle of your business, your market reach increases, which results in increased sales and revenue.
Better employee engagement
Being an empathetic IT service provider has internal benefits as well. When the business is run with empathy, the employees feel more included, appreciated, and overall, better engaged with the company. This results in better productivity, creativity, and innovation.
In summary, as IT service providers reposition themselves as more human-centric than just being finance-driven, empathy becomes a very crucial differentiator. Companies need to focus on the customers by listening, understanding, implementing, and continuously evolving to address their needs and achieving greater customer satisfaction.