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Full Service When it comes to customer service, actions speak louder than words.

By Robert J. McGarvey

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

For more than a decade, American businesses have promised--oftenin loud advertisements--to deliver top-notch customer service. Butgood as that sounds, it's not reality, says John Tschohl,author of Achieving Excellence Through Customer Service(Bestsellers Publishing).

"The general level of service remains poor. Top managementthinks they are doing great--but customers know otherwise,"says Tschohl.

And those customers are more demanding now than ever. "Thecompanies that don't deliver service will be crowded out of themarketplace," warns Tschohl, owner of Bloomington, Minnesota,Service Quality Institute, a training company that has put onprograms for businesses as diverse as Eastman Kodak and MillerBrewing.

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