One of the main work streams I have been doing for more than 10 years is escalations handling, this function is one that many like to avoid due to the huge pressure it brings! I was asked before by one of Marketing intelligence startups: How to warrant having a proper escalation management for our killing issues with customers?…I tried to give my short and quick insights about this, just to assist on understanding how to have a proper escalation process as short and direct as possible, here below:
The most important factor to consider, communication with the customer should be regular, clear, informative and receptive
Internal communication between the teams should be seamless, fast and diverse
Escalation Manager should be the owner of communication with the customer, this will make is easier for the customer to follow-up and positively perceive a clear value from the escalation process, also the escalation manager should be the internal owner, driver and enabler for other stakeholders to solve the customer’s issue in shortest time possible
The escalation progress internally should be visible to top executives, the escalation process itself generally is triggered when the normal process fails to meet the customer’s expectations, which results business risks. Thus, top executives should be involved to making sure we are having the right internal attention and to show to our customers how importance the situation is to our top executives!
The escalation manager should involve the right stakeholders who can make tangible difference to the customer, if it is a technical escalation then maybe senior support, RnD and product managers must work together to find a solution or even a workaround for this issue. Business escalations should be also handled same way with sales and commercial teams
An escalation is only successful when a proper resolution is met and agreed by the customer; making sure that this resolution is clear and acknowledged by the customer is a key criterion of proper escalation handling
For an escalation manager to be successful in what he/she is doing, he/she should possess specific skillset like, compassion, enthusiasm, patience, superb listening skills and a proper sense of direction to lead the situation to an acceptable resolution