Building Project Team Customer Service Skills

Edward P. Youngberg

An important aspect to a successful project is client perception of satisfactory customer service provided by the project team. Project clients are patient interfacing with the project team because they usually work for the same company or organization. They also have been educated by experience or their management and understand the importance and potential benefits to the organization, and them personally. However, most people take “a wait and see attitude.” Their support is crucial and treating them like a customer can insure a satisfied client and successful project.

Developing project team customer service skills begins with the project manager. It needs to be a priority goal set early in the project strategy definition. The project manager needs to constantly reinforce the customer service goal until project completion. Each project team member must take the necessary time to understand and accept the basic needs of their clients. This applies to all the other team members as well.

Needs are always in excess of project client wants. They don’t always know what they need; it is up to the project team to help clients--and other team members--discover what the project needs are. Needs for project clients and team members fall into the following categories: project-related information, alternative approaches, control, empathy, fairness and, most …

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