Holdcom's Senior Script Consultant, Rob LeFever, shared a story about his first experience at a hospital on his own. He had woke up that morning with a slight pain in his neck. As he was getting ready for work, a painful spasm coursed through his spine. It was brief, and seemingly coincidental, so he continued his daily activity.
But the pain grew more and more intense. Finally, he drove to the emergency room at the local hospital. Without delay they brought him to a private waiting room - and waited for a long time before he was seen by a doctor.
Meanwhile, an advocate - a volunteer who assists with patients in the waiting room - would check up on him. Normally this effort would be appreciated, but the advocate did not empathize Rob's situation. Instead of the intended effect of ease and comfort, it became intrusive: the advocate was a chatterbox, would say "that's a doozy!" when Rob suffered a neck spasm, and instead of addressing his needs, would be absent for unpredictable amounts of time.
When putting a customer on hold, it is crucial that you understand your customer's pain and their specific situation. Some people want constant attention, while others do not. Even with an automated message on hold system, it is possible to customize your message to address a mass audience while targeting individual needs. Message on hold programs are advocates for your business that provide the right attention, and keep your customers satisfied - much better than generic messages that show more indifference than care.
Knowing your customer's needs is the key to optimizing their waiting experience.