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How You Do... What You Do: Create Service Excellence That Wins Clients For Life [Hardcover]

Bob Livingston , David (foreword by) Calhoun
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

May 9 2008

Between the challenges of escalating competition, well-informed clients, and dismal customer service, today's marketplace is becoming more and more crowded. The result is that your clients have more influence and choices than ever before. If you or your organization do not consistently satisfy and surpass their expectations, your clients will take their buying power elsewhere. It's that simple. But by establishing service excellence as your top strategic and cultural priority, you will foster the strong relationships needed to win--and retain--loyal clients.

In this breakthrough book, customer service expert Bob Livingston gives you practical tools for transforming your approach to serving clients by strengthening “how you do what you do.” Whether you're a business leader, a client service executive, a sales manager, or an individual, you can differentiate yourself from competition by adopting Livingston's simple yet proven roadmap for achieving Service Excellence.

In How You Do . . . What You Do, Livingston imparts a clear, step-by-step blueprint for transforming your culture, attitudes, and behaviors by illustrating how to:

  • Develop and live your Purpose and Values
  • Understand your clients' soft needs, and create plans to satisfy them
  • Seek continuous improvement by stimulating creativity and innovation
  • Keep your service-oriented culture growing
  • Create a passion for Service Excellence

Livingston draws upon a lifetime of experience in which he has achieved measurable success helping many companies shape their service cultures--most notably CROSSMARK, an international consumer products sales and marketing agency, whose remarkable transformation stands out as one of the strongest proof statements for this methodology. Throughout, Livingston benchmarks other great companies renowned for their service excellence, including Accenture, Henry & Horne, ECRM, The Nielsen Company, TBWA\Worldwide, Four Seasons, and many others.

Properly executed, this compelling and inspirational approach to service virtually guarantees the client loyalty that will set you apart from competition, and distinguish you by How You Do . . . What You Do.


Product Details


Product Description

From the Back Cover

Executive Praise for

How You Do…What You Do

“How You Do. . .What You Do is a great read with immediate application! Bob's extensive experience validates how service wins in today's marketplace.”-Duncan Mac Naughton, Executive Vice President, SUPERVALU

“How You Do. . .What You Do showcases the full range of skills, strategies, and commitments that are required to become a top performing service organization. It is an inspirational book.”-John J. Lewis, President & CEO North America , The Nielsen Company

“I have experienced first hand the insights and reflections Bob has captured in How You Do. . .What You Do. If you will allow just a measure of Bob's passion and knowledge to impact your life you will be on your way to providing service clients truly appreciate.”-John Thompson COO, CROSSMARK

“How You Do. . .What You Do's messages are grounded in the reality of business. Anybody who wants to understand the competitive advantages that come from a service mentality must read this book.”-Art Drogue, Senior Vice President Customer Development, Unilever USA

“Bob Livingston provides a simple method for implementing world class service that will grow any business. Read this book and you will return your investment a thousand fold.”-Steve Schmidt, CEO, Office Depot Business Solutions

About the Author

Bob Livingston is CEO of REL Communications, a consulting group specializing in company, team, and personal transformations. In writing this book, Bob has drawn upon his personal experiences, insightful observations, and esteemed career as a senior sales executive with Unilever and a respected consultant to the consumer products industry.


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most helpful customer reviews
By Robert Morris HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Frankly, I doubt if there are any head-snapping revelations left concerning customer service but I continue to be impressed by recently published books in which their authors offer thought-provoking perspectives, insights, and suggestions worthy of careful consideration. Just as there is a buyer for every house, in publishing there is a buyer for every book. My task as a reviewer is to help those who read my comments to decide whether or not the given book seems to be directly appropriate to her or his own circumstances, needs, and interests. How You Do...What You Do offers a case in point.

Bob Livingston achieves his objective of presenting a comprehensive, cohesive, and cost-effective program that (with appropriate modifications, of course) could be put in place by almost any company, whatever its size and nature may be. I think that his book can also be of substantial value to individuals in sales, especially those who are relatively inexperienced although much of what he shares could serve as "reminders" to sales managers.

Obviously, the best an organization can do to support its sales initiatives (as opposed to its marketing initiatives) is to "free up" its salespersons - as much as possible - from responsibilities that are unrelated to the cultivation, solicitation, and post-sale process. Less time consumed by paperwork means more time available to nourish customer relationships. A company can maintain zero-defect quality control of each product it sells. It can also ensure that there are no foul-ups with order processing, delivery, invoicing, and technical service. An appropriate analogy would be to carrier jet pilots who also depend on an efficient system to provide the information they need, then get them and their planes safely on their way to each target destination.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Also, what a company can be and do for its salespeople Aug. 1 2008
By Robert Morris - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Frankly, I doubt if there are any head-snapping revelations left concerning customer service but I continue to be impressed by recently published books in which their authors offer thought-provoking perspectives, insights, and suggestions worthy of careful consideration. Just as there is a buyer for every house, in publishing there is a buyer for every book. My task as a reviewer is to help those who read my comments to decide whether or not the given book seems to be directly appropriate to her or his own circumstances, needs, and interests. How You Do...What You Do offers a case in point.

Bob Livingston achieves his objective of presenting a comprehensive, cohesive, and cost-effective program that (with appropriate modifications, of course) could be put in place by almost any company, whatever its size and nature may be. I think that his book can also be of substantial value to individuals in sales, especially those who are relatively inexperienced although much of what he shares could serve as "reminders" to sales managers.

Obviously, the best an organization can do to support its sales initiatives (as opposed to its marketing initiatives) is to "free up" its salespersons - as much as possible - from responsibilities that are unrelated to the cultivation, solicitation, and post-sale process. Less time consumed by paperwork means more time available to nourish customer relationships. A company can maintain zero-defect quality control of each product it sells. It can also ensure that there are no foul-ups with order processing, delivery, invoicing, and technical service. An appropriate analogy would be to carrier jet pilots who also depend on an efficient system to provide the information they need, then get them and their planes safely on their way to each target destination. As Livingston explains very well, companies should be customer-centric, indeed customer-driven and develop a culture that recognizes what Peter Drucker observed decades ago: "If you don't have a customer, you don't have a business."

Of course, selling today must take into full account that customers have more choices than ever before, that many (if not most) products are commodities or at least widely viewed that way, and that in general, customers are much better informed than in years past, largely because of immediate access to more and better information, much of it provided by Web sites. (There are several Web sites that direct people to other Web sites. They function as an electronic concierge" and can be quite helpful.) Purchase decisions - including the decision to purchase nothing now or soon - usually involve several people (what Michael Boylan characterizes as a "circle of influence") rather than a single decision-maker, so cultivation strategies must be diversified and "customized" and yet (somehow) coordinated effectively. If you don't think that's tricky, try doing it.

As Livingston fully understands, no sales program or system such as his (or anyone else's) can ever replace a knowledgeable, likeable, principled, and energetic salesperson, nor was it intended to be. On the contrary, it should be viewed as an enabling device that saves a salesperson precious time and energy, improves identification and pre-qualification of prospective customers, and in other ways (to repeat) "frees up" her or him to focus on cultivation and solicitation initiatives.

His book will help those in sales to gain a better understand of what to do...and how to do it. (Those who read between lines will also get some tips on what not to do...and how not to do it.) Livingston's book can also help CEOs and other C-level executives to gain a better understanding of why a customer-centric, indeed customer-driven culture must be established and then sustained.

Those who share my high regard for this book are urged to check out Joseph Michelli's The New Gold Standard: 5 Leadership Principles for Creating a Legendary Customer Experience Courtesy of The Ritz Carlton Hotel Company and two of Leonard Berry's books, On Great Service: A Framework for Action and Discovering the Soul of Service: The Nine Drivers of Sustainable Business Success as well as Creating Customer Evangelists: How Loyal Customers Become a Volunteer Sales Force co-authored by Ben McConnell and Jackie Huba.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind!! June 15 2008
By Alexandros - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
One could easily say that Bob's most enduring talent is to naturally motivate and encourage those around him. For those of us who have seen him speak, we have had the luxury of seeing the stories in this book come to life in the most inspiring and thought provocking manner.

You will want to photocopy sections of this book for your staff, bosses and clients alike. You will find yourself coming back to it over and over again. HYDWYD will be your valued asset in engaging those around you in service minded behavior. After all it is about the "how" you do "what" you do...

Bob is clearly the real life depiction of "how you do, what you do!" I can easily endorse Bob and his book without reservation.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The real deal...he practices what he preaches! June 12 2008
By Edward J. Franczek - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I have had the pleasure of reading the book, hearing him present "How you do..What you do, and working with him directly and I can tell you that Bob Livingston is the real deal! The premise of the book extends beyond work and has meaning for your personal life as well. The book lays out in clear terms a pathway for improving "how you do" things, in many ways a lost art (or even value) today. It also provides meaningful examples to emphasize the points. It is fast paced and a must read!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Service Excellence is something everyone can learn from! May 22 2008
By Pat Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Bob Livingston has a wonderful way of conveying service stories and solutions. He shares his many years of experience and situations from the Corporate World and presents simple solutions that we can all learn from. Every time I have a poor service experience, I wish that there were handouts in Bob's book so that I could share with people how they could learn to improve their level of service. How You Do....What You Do raises an awareness level of service second to none. This is a quick read, that will remain with you always. I highly recommend it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How You Do What You Do May 22 2008
By Anastasia - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Real-life stories of on-the-job learning experiences which led the author to an amazingly successful career. Bob Livinston is sharing a wealth of info, tips and "how tos" for anyone and everyone in business -and all businesses require "service" one way or the other - so they can avoid the pitfalls of complacency and master their markets. This is a very detailed message to every corporate manager, officer - and caring worker in this country.
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