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Service Failure: The Real Reasons Employees Struggle With Customer Service and What You Can Do About It Paperback – November 15, 2012


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Service Failure: The Real Reasons Employees Struggle With Customer Service and What You Can Do About It + Customer Service Training 101: Quick and Easy Techniques That Get Great Results + The Big Book of Customer Service Training Games (Big Book Series)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: AMACOM (November 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814431992
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814431993
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #867,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Customer service goals have been articulated, messages drilled, and incentive programs created. But many employees still deliver lackluster service. What does it take to get them functioning as stellar frontline representatives of the company?

Rather than offering another set of tactics for improving customer service, this book takes a novel approach by rooting out the real reasons employees aren’t delivering the service they should. The results can be both surprising and illuminating, such as:

• Company culture doesn’t always support service excellence

• Over-emphasis on cost reduction often increases the cost of service

• Employees are torn between doing the right thing for the customer and following policy

• Poor products and services can make helping the customer nearly impossible

• Employees’ interests often don’t align with company goals

Once core problems are identified, the book offers corrective solutions, including redirecting coaching efforts, revisiting policies and procedures, clarifying roles and responsibilities, and more. Filled with inside stories from well-known organizations and the latest scientific research, Service Failure helps people overcome the obstacles preventing them from doing their very best.

From the Back Cover

“Remove the obstacles that get in the way of providing excellent customer service. With multiple strategies supported by real-life examples, Jeff Toister teaches how to avoid service failure and provide service success.”

Shep Hyken, New York Times bestselling author of The Amazement Revolution

Service Failure offers a very personal and deeply felt discourse on an important topic: improving (and avoiding failure in) customer service and the customer experience.”

Micah Solomon, author of High-Tech, High-Touch Customer Service and business keynote speaker

Are you endlessly trying to improve your organization’s customer service efforts, but getting so-so results? There may be a culprit in your organization that you’ve never considered.

Service Failure reveals ten hidden obstacles that prevent employees from delivering great customer service, including:

• Overly strict standards that make it hard for employees to adapt to customers’ needs

• Corporate cultures that unwittingly encourage deficient service

• Ineffective procedures that routinely anger customers and frustrate employees

• And supervisors who unknowingly encourage employees to focus on tasks at the expense of serving customers

These unseen problems are frequently overlooked in the rush to launch another quick fix that inevitably fails to improve customer service.

Using examples from well-known companies, real stories from frontline employees, and the latest scientific research to highlight the challenges customer service employees experience every day, Service Failure delivers straightforward solutions for overcoming these obstacles. From redirecting coaching efforts to revisiting policies and procedures to clarifying roles and responsibilities, the book’s powerful, sometimes counterintuitive insights can be applied at the organizational, departmental, or even the individual level to help the entire team deliver outstanding customer service.

JEFF TOISTER is president of the consulting firm Toister Performance Solutions, Inc., and has worked as a customer service trainer, manager, and frontline employee for over 20 years. He lives in San Diego.


More About the Author

Jeff Toister is a customer service expert with more than 20 years of experience serving customers at the highest level.

Today, Jeff is the President of Toister Performance Solutions, Inc., a consulting firm dedicated to helping companies improve customer service. His clients range from Fortune 500 companies to small businesses like his local plumber. (Yes - plumbers CAN provide outstanding customer service!) His innovative solutions have helped clients improve customer satisfaction, sales, and efficiency.

He has also worked as a customer service manager, customer service trainer, and even a frontline employee over his career.

While Jeff is skilled in many facets of customer service, he is best known for his highly interactive training programs and keynote presentations. He is a nationally recognized employee training expert and was one of the first recipients of the Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) credential from the American Society for Training and Development.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Email: jeff@toistersolutions.com
Web: www.toistersolutions.com
Phone: 619-955-7946
Mail: 5694 Mission Center Rd #264, San Diego, CA 92108

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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The writing is clear.
David A. Berke
In his book, Jeff Toister does a fabulous job explaining the reasons why employees fail to give customers great service.
Molly
The author offers straightforward solutions that are applicable to most service situations regardless of the industry.
Dave

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Eric Schmitz on May 4, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is great. Jeff really gets to the bottom of setting up and delivering outstanding customer service. I love all of the examples and studies that are referenced in the text.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I picked this book up on a whim, and it turned out to be one of the better books I have found on dealing with productivity as related to people. I found myself thinking about colleagues, administrators and even my students as I read through. I don't enjoy re-reading books but this is one that will benefit me more the second time around.

This is a book to add to your arsenal if you are seeking ways to get people motivated, and keep them producing at a high level. I am certain some people might misinterpret what I am writing as some might read my words as a sort of nod in favor of manipulation. However, productivity is not always about meeting some company's projected profit, it is more than that. This book is about meeting people where they are at, understanding that they just might want to do better, but simply lack the necessary tools required to effect more desirable outcomes.

Because of that, I suggest that anyone reading this review assume best intentions. More than that, we live in a world of broken and wounded people, I see nothing wring with understanding what motivates people and what hinders their chance at social, emotional and economic success. Everyone may not start out in the same situation, but we all have the potential to do well for ourselves.

Again, I am not seeking to correlate what Jeff Toister has articulated in very understandable terms, on how to get people to optimize a company's bottom line. My focus is on making them feel better about themselves and if they happen to be better employees, parents, children, students and scholars, then so much the better. The world will be better for it.

Read the book and see if it doesn't help you understand Human nature just a little more.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book provides easy to understand descriptions of the causes of poor customer service along with a variety of practical solutions. The writing is clear. The examples are always helpful. The book is appropriate for any company that deals with customers - in other words, just about any company, regardless of size.
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By John Ippolito on February 26, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Service Failure pieced together a lot of what I already knew with some great insights i was not familiar with. Jeff has a way of writing that is both friendly and educational. The real life examples he gives from his own experiences really made me feel like I understood what he was trying to convey. This book made me look at some of my own past mistakes and also some of the positive attributes I have when dealing with customers. Service Failure is a quick, impacting book that all employees should read, not just customer service representatives. We are all customer service reps on one level or another. Great book.
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Format: Paperback
Service Failure is a must read if you are looking for practical approaches to improving customer service in your organization. The author offers examples that hit home, entertaining you while teaching you. Beyond the wealth of examples and stories, one of the best features of Service Failure is the Solution Summary section at the end of each chapter which takes all of the lessons shared throughout the chapter and condenses them down to a single checklist that can be followed. Service Failure has appropriate lessons for companies both big and small, and shares examples (both positive and negative) from a wide variety of industries. If you are struggling with customer experience in any way, this book should become a must read throughout your organization.
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By Molly on September 10, 2013
Format: Paperback
In his book, Jeff Toister does a fabulous job explaining the reasons why employees fail to give customers great service. His ideas are on point, and he gives great examples to tell the story visually for the reader. I recommend it to any service provider - not just those struggling with service quality, but also those looking to get incrementally better.
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