Working as a security officer is a tough but rewarding job. While it’s important to remain serious and professional in tough situations, coming across as unapproachable or disinterested can make your job harder if customers perceive you as unfriendly or unhelpful. Focusing on your customer service skills increases customer satisfaction and makes work a pleasant place to be.
Here are four ways you can provide excellent customer service.
1. Make a Good First Impression
Whether it’s over the phone or in person, security officers are often the first point of contact a customer has with a business. Greet every customer in a friendly, pleasant way. Give customers your name during your initial greeting and ask how they would like you to address them. Always default to Mr. or Ms. and the customer’s last name until told otherwise.
Keep your uniform clean and pressed and keep up with your personal grooming. Avoid large pieces of jewelry, scuffed shoes, and anything else that could be seen as unprofessional. Keep your shirt tucked in and make sure your badge or nameplate is clearly visible to customers.
2. Control Your Body Language and Voice
Maintaining a calm and confident, yet friendly tone of voice helps customers feel both secure and relaxed. This is particularly important with customers who are irritated or angry. Sounding defensive or agitated can escalate customers further.
Try to avoid long pauses and don’t pepper your conversation with “ums” or “ahs,” as this can make you seem unsure of yourself or distracted. Smiling goes a long way with customers who might expect security guards to maintain a straight face at all times.
Staying mindful of your body language can also make a big difference in how customers perceive you. Holding eye contact when speaking with customers shows them you’re focused on what they’re saying. Maintaining good posture helps you appear alert and willing to help, while slouching will convey a lazy and disinterested attitude.
Try to avoid keeping your hands in your pockets when you speak with customers. Don’t cross your arms in front of your chest, as this makes you appear closed off.
3. Go Above and Beyond to Assist Customers
The little things can often turn a negative or neutral customer experience into a positive one. Though your first priority is the safety and security of the business, customers, and employees, offering extra service makes dealing with customers much easier.
Offer to hold the door open for customers, especially if they’re carrying large or heavy items. Get to know the business you’re serving so you can give customers thorough and accurate directions. If you’re able to leave your post, offer to escort customers to their vehicles if it’s dark.
Repeat customers’ questions and requests back to them in your own words to show them you understood their needs and let them know you’ll be happy to assist them with anything you can.
4. Explain Yourself
Explaining security procedures to customers helps them understand why you need to do certain things and makes it more likely they’ll comply without incident. Offering explanations without being asked assures customers you’re following the proper procedures and aren’t asking for arbitrary, unnecessary behaviors.