Customer-Focused Operations Lead to Outstanding Customer Service


By Lisa Copeland, CAPP, PMP, CUFM

There is much to be said about an operation’s ability to provide outstanding customer service. Customer interactions are information-sharing opportunities between both parties – the customer and the customer service provider. The benefits of an amenable interaction are far-reaching for any business operation, including customer satisfaction, positive reviews, customer referrals, and a happy, cohesive work environment.

There are a host of strengths that, when practiced in concert, create a solid foundation for providing exceptional customer service. Some of these strengths include empathy, problem-solving skills, communication skills, patience, active listening, positive attitude, and response time.

Leading a customer-focused operation requires teams to work together to create a consistent and overall better experience for the customer. Because our customer service teams interact with customers directly, they immediately impact our customers’ experiences. And because of this, we need to support our teams, empowering them to do their jobs well.

Creating a customer-focused operation begins with the operational vision. Using that vision, establish customer service goals that will feed your organizational objectives. For example, target how quickly the customer service team responds to phone calls. Then, develop customer service policies that serve as guidelines for exactly how the team will interact with customers. Finally, conduct team training where policies are introduced and explained thoroughly. Incorporating role-playing scenarios into the training helps solidify the point. Training will ensure a successful roll-out and implementation of the new policies.

Customers who receive outstanding service feel valued by the service provider and the operation. Providing reliable, courteous customer service that addresses the customers’ most pressing needs builds trust and credibility, resulting in a healthy work environment. Customer-focused operations lead to outstanding customer service.

Lisa Copeland, CAPP, PMP, CUFM, is the Business Operations Manager for Old Dominion University. She can be reached at