What Is Customer Service and How Do I Explain It in an Interview?

What Is Customer Service and How Do I Explain It in an Interview?

When you apply for a job in customer service, sales, retail, hospitality, or a related field involving connection with the public, employers can ask you the well-known interview question, “What does customer service mean to you?” What qualities make for exceptional customer service? Customer service: What is it?

Whatever the exact wording of this particular interview question, the potential employer undoubtedly wants to know how you would behave while engaging with customers and how you believe customers should be treated.

In this article, we look at possible justifications for this question, techniques for discussing customer service in an interview, and examples of how to reply to this common interview question.

Why ask this of employers?

What does customer service mean to you? is a question that a prospective employer might ask you during an interview to determine whether your response aligns with what their company requires.

A company’s reputation as a brand determines its long-term success. Businesses that consistently provide outstanding customer experiences are more likely to see client loyalty, recommendations, and repeat business. In a client-facing role, you must uphold a company’s reputation by ensuring total client pleasure. Employers are looking for workers who can consistently provide excellent service.

conducting inquiries about customer service

While you are writing your response to this question, pause for a moment to consider the following. Using the following knowledge, you can modify your response:

Customer service guidelines

Check the website of the business to see whether it has a written goal statement or customer service policy. The company’s fundamental values and performance standards will become clearer to you as a result, and you will be better able to address them in your response.

a thing or assistance

Analyze the employer’s offerings and their target market by taking some time to do so. If you’re applying at a bridal shop, for instance, you can assume that the vast majority of the customers are happy brides and their close relatives or friends. A kind and happy customer service agent would be most beneficial because they might be feeling stressed or overworked. Consider how you may highlight those qualities in your response.

your interactions

Consider your own purchasing history and times where you had very exceptional service. Make sure to note in your response whatever stands out about those interactions.

How should you react when asked what “customer service” means to you?

Here are two methods for providing examples in response to this interview question:

1. Outline your personal shopping experience.

This is especially helpful if you’re starting your career or don’t have any prior customer service experience. This kind of response gives you the opportunity to show that you understand customer service, even if you have never held a position that required you to deal with the public.

When using this type of response, be sure to provide specific examples of what the customer service representative did and why it had a positive impact:

“Good customer service is characterized by consistently exceeding clients’ expectations and going above and beyond to help others overcome their problems. For instance, when I recently traveled home to be with my father during a major surgery, I had to rent a car. The clerk at the airport rental desk told me there were no vehicles left in stock when I arrived.

I discussed my father with the rental representative and made clear to her how crucial it was for me to have a car while I was there. She quickly dialed another place and asked them to bring a car over straight away. Additionally, she upgraded my rental at no cost to me. The clerk went above and beyond to improve my experience by being friendly, helpful, and sympathetic. After that, I won’t ever use another rental car company. Such an interaction has the potential to create a lifelong customer.

2. Share your personal customer service stories.

This is a great way to highlight your credentials and professional experience while still addressing the hiring manager’s inquiry:

“I believe that offering exceptional customer service entails going above and beyond to make sure that customers receive the assistance they need. When I worked as a customer service agent for a bank in the past, I frequently received calls from clients who needed to deactivate their debit cards after misplacing their wallets. A senior citizen who had her pocketbook stolen while she was traveling once called me. She was feeling alone and distressed. Instead of rushing through my script and directing her to our fraud prevention division, I exhibited compassion. I listened intently to her narrative while also giving my own personal incident of having my luggage snatched.

After some time she settled down and began to laugh. Then, because she has been a dependable client for more than 20 years, I assisted her in deactivating her cards and waived the fee for an overnight debit card. She was so satisfied with the experience that she sent us three more referrals throughout the course of the next month.


A prepared answer to the query “What does customer service mean to you?” is a smart idea. despite the fact that there are many ways for companies to ask you about your customer service skills and experiences. By providing examples to back up your statements, you can persuade employers that you have the ability to adhere to their standards and please their customers.


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