People often make the assumption that it’s ‘impossible’ to ‘see’ service processes, so ‘grasping the current situation’ in services is often a group of people sitting around a conference room table talking about what they think. “Its not like manufacturing” they say. “You can’t see things going down the line like you can see a car being made. Services are made in people’s heads and in the computer. What do you want me to do? Go sit with someone while they’re on a call?” “Yes”, I say! “That’s EXACTLY what I want you to do!” Sit and listen to people as they are talking with customers. Use a headset splitter to hear both sides of the conversation. See how easy – or difficult – it is, to interact with the computer system. Listen to find out whether everyone follows a standard process. If your people meet customers directly, go along with them on their service calls. Find out how often they tell your customers ‘I can’t’. I can guarantee, that what you’ll see and hear will be totally different in the place where the services are created, then in a conference room.

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