As it turns out, you were made for customer service. You are always optimistic, you love a good challenge, and you collect outstanding reviews like lint in a clothes dryer. However, you’ve enjoyed a high status in your customer service department for long enough – now what?
Customer service is an excellent stepping stone to prestigious positions within a business. If you are eager to kick your career into high gear, here’s what you have to do:
Look for Ways to Improve
Even if you believe that you are executing your current tasks impeccably, there are always ways you can be better at work – especially if you are still relatively low on the customer service career ladder. Before you can make any moves in your career, you need to prove to yourself and others that you are deserving of more authority and better pay. If you haven’t already, you should consider improving your performance in the following ways:
- Ask for advice. You shouldn’t feel too intimidated by your colleagues or superiors to ask for guidance on any project or decision. Not only does this build trust, but it also gives you insight into their preferred processes.
- Debrief with your boss. Unless you tell them, your supervisor likely doesn’t know how you’re performing, you can request regular meetings to examine your current responsibilities, your execution, and your goals.
- Reflect on your strengths and weaknesses. It’s easy to ignore what you’re bad at – but if you do that, you’ll never improve. You might consider keeping a journal, keeping old to-do lists, and meditation to identify the skills you struggle with that might impact your career.
Enhance Your Credentials
One of the most obvious ways to enhance your career – regardless of whether you want to remain in customer service or migrate to another field – is to enhance your qualifications. Usually, this means returning to the classroom for certification or a degree that proves you are qualified for more authoritative, better-paying positions.
Many full-time customer service professionals maintain their current employment while increasing their credentials by attending online programs. You can find web-based training for almost any field, so you should determine where you want to go before you enroll. For example, if you strive for the c-suite or entrepreneurship, you might apply for online MBA programs. Alternatively, if you want to pivot into a more technical career, you should find education opportunities that help you accrue the skills and knowledge you need.
Know Where to Go
Customer service is so integral to a business’s success that being familiar with customer service is a boon for most leadership positions within a company. As you move up your career ladder, you should consider the following positions which gladly put your experience to work:
Technical Support Analyst
If you devote your credential enhancement to tech-related studies – like computer science or engineering – you can launch yourself into a career in tech through tech support. Thanks to their specialized knowledge, tech support analysts typically earn higher salaries than the average customer service rep – plus there is plenty of room for career development in tech.
Perhaps the most common career move for customer service reps is into sales. The knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in both fields overlap significantly: You need to understand the products and be competent at managing customers. Because sales reps often earn commissions on their efforts, you stand to earn more in sales positions than you do in customer service. Further, having sales experience is useful if you have entrepreneurial dreams.
Public Relations Specialist
Creating and maintaining a favorable public image requires in-depth understanding of your audience, and after customer service – which should teach you how customers react in all sorts of situations. Bolstering your experience with education in marketing or mass communications might be beneficial for movements into this field. Fortunately, the opportunity for advancement is significant in PR, and the top 10 percent of PR professionals earn a healthy six-figure salary.
Customer service is unendingly useful, but not everyone wants to remain a rep forever. When you believe you have gained as much as you can from your customer service job, you shouldn’t be afraid to pursue advancement in your career. Whether that takes you higher in customer service management or outside of the customer service realm is up to you.
About the Author
Tiffany is a leader in marketing authority who assists Seek Visibility. Tiffany prides herself in her ability to create and provide high quality content that audiences find valuable. She also enjoys connecting with other bloggers and collaborating for exclusive content in various niches. With many years of experience, Tiffany has found herself more passionate than ever to continue developing content and relationships across multiple platforms and audiences.