chapter  7
25 Pages

Nuances of interpersonal interactions

This chapter describes the role model for the service provider – how they should react, project, and promote a positive posture or attitude when interacting with the customer. It therefore places heavy emphasis on the verbal and nonverbal communication skills needed to excel on the frontline. Specific, less obvious aspects of verbal communication are considered, including how a service provider can create a rapport with customers by using phrases that foster verbal immediacy. In terms of nonverbal communication, this chapter illustrates how gestures form a basis for messages of communication and need to be actively managed in a service environment. Moreover, because most gestures occur with little or no conscious effort, this chapter explains that frontline personnel benefit from specifically designed body-language training. In a similar vein, a discussion of the literature surrounding proper listening skills is also offered. This discussion is germane to customer-provider interactions because a provider’s listening skills, as perceived by the customer, are a critical component of customer satisfaction sentiment.