The speed of support

When we help peo­ple in sup­port we want to quickly solve what­ever prob­lems they face. There is an urge to get the answer sent as soon as we can. The faster reply is the bet­ter reply. But, that is not always the best way to make some­one happy. For those peo­ple who are frus­trated, shy, or unclear in their orig­i­nal descrip­tion, you may end up solv­ing the prob­lem as you con­structed it, not the prob­lem they had.

This prob­lem is exac­er­bated when you face a back­log of requests. Someone has already been wait­ing for days so you really, really want to get that answer to them. Now.

Sometimes, the best thing you can do is ask a ques­tion. Patience and care trump raw speed.

Taking a step back gives you both the oppor­tu­nity to make sure you are on the same page. You show that you are there to help. You want to do more than send a response and move on. You want to take time, under­stand things, and then solve them. When you do this you work toward hon­est help, not just efficiency.

The less we assume the bet­ter we will be at mak­ing peo­ple happy. Good sup­port is about answer­ing the ques­tions some­one has. Ensuring that we prop­erly under­stand those ques­tions is the most impor­tant step toward that goal.

3 thoughts on “The speed of support

  1. Nice post! Its not always bout bounc­ing the solu­tion back to the per­son! Empathising and being in the person’s shoes also does help. Sometimes sim­ply cre­at­ing a feel­ing that we do under­stand the prob­lem and its con­se­ques­nces, makes the per­son feel bet­ter n he starts trust­ing the solu­tion and the solu­tion provider.

  2. Pingback: The pace of support | Andrew Spittle

Comments are closed.