Thanks to Susan Allen, Booksource’s Customer Care Manager, for sharing her thoughts on the Booksource Brand Promise and explaining just what it is that makes this such a special company to work with. Booksource, a division of GL group, partners with PreK-12 educators to build classroom libraries that engage readers.
Think about the last time you had an exceptional experience with a company. What was it that stands out? As Maya Angelou said, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” We understand how important reading and getting exactly the right book in the hands of their students is to our customers. We feel it, because we are also book lovers and readers—and we know how important the work our customers do is. We don’t just say we’re committed to engaged reading—we act on it. We want our customers to truly feel that we value what they do and understand what their needs are.
That commitment takes many forms. It all starts with that personal connection. Whether calling us and always getting a live, friendly person on the phone, emailing with your Customer Care partner or meeting us at a conference, we strive to find the connection to the person—not just a nameless customer. Ultimately, we know our customers are not just the teachers we work with, but the children they serve—and how important fostering engaged reading truly is.
What does this look like on an average day? We look for ways to continually improve, keeping our customers at the forefront. Whether it’s finding ways to make it easier for customers to connect with us digitally or making sure we are directing customer communication to the right person, we never want to get complacent. We actively seek out and act on customer feedback—it’s at the heart of what we do. One of our key initiatives for our Annual Strategic Plan is Brand (and therefore Customer) Experience. It means not making decisions based on assumptions about our customers, but instead engaging with and listening to them in as many ways as possible. We truly value the feedback we receive—especially when it’s pointing out something we can do better. We operate in a feedback rich environment as a business—with our teammates, leaders, and customers—because we understand open, honest communication comes from a place of wanting the other person, and entire group, to continue to grow and improve.
It’s also the little things. It’s easy to get lost in the day to day shuffle, but it’s so crucial to keep in mind how one simple thing can make a huge impact. From hand-writing “thank you!” on the boxes we ship orders in, to quickly and easily sending out a needed invoice, to just listening fully to the customer on the other end of the phone—these things matter. Again, it’s all about the people, and remembering we’re all human and treating each other with the respect and dignity that everyone deserves.
We also know we are not perfect—far from it. We make mistakes, and when we do we try and own it as much as possible. Customers appreciate this too. They don’t want to deal with a company that treats their problems with disdain or as if they aren’t a priority. Sure, they may be upset because of a problem or mistake on our end, but that frustration will be more than offset by the appreciation they will feel by being taken seriously and having their issue resolved. Ultimately, you cannot be afraid to fail and be wrong—it goes back to that commitment to continuous improvement.
Our Brand Promise is pretty straightforward—and it starts, and ends, with people. Booksource is a people focused company, focused on our teams internally as well as our customers. We take that seriously and look for ways, large and small, to give our customers the exceptional experience they deserve.