Kia Mirmotahari (Kia) is a Customer Solutions Coordinator for our Folding Carton, Retail Packaging Division at our office in Richmond, BC. At Great Little Box Company/Ideon Packaging (GLBC), we are fortunate to be Kia’s employer in customer service—he’s a natural! It certainly helps that prior to working with us, Kia was a Purchasing Manager for a printing and packaging company in Iran. When he moved to Canada in 2019, he wanted to stay with the industry he knew so much about. He figured that customer service was a great way to get involved. We’re so happy he had that bright idea a little over 18 months ago.
Do you miss home?
To some extent, yes. There are things I miss. But overall, I feel like I’m home here.
What are your keys to success in customer service?
Am I successful (laughing)? Well, I have to admit my experience in printing and packaging really helps. When you understand the business and its technical aspects, it helps you pick up the pieces faster. Also, I believe in this role we should be extremely well organized. You could easily miss something. The system helps to prevent mistakes, but we still need to pay attention to details.
What interests you about your job?
The best parts for me are solving a problem, helping a customer, and responding to a request. When you hear “I need you to help me get this product on this shelf at this time” and you put energy into solving that problem, it’s pretty satisfying.
What do you find most rewarding about your job?
It’s in the name: “customer service.” When you deliver service properly and even go beyond what’s expected, it feels good. When I can do something extra to optimize something or prevent a problem, that’s rewarding. I always try to put extra energy into improving things.
What are your biggest challenges?
I don’t have big challenges in the role, but sometimes challenges come from outside of it. Shortages, for example, can create delays on orders. The customer solutions coordinator role itself is straightforward, and as long as you keep track of things, it goes well. Sometimes you can’t do anything about the outside problem, but you can still do whatever you can to keep the customer happy and satisfied. Also, being transparent and clear with customers is key. You need to let them know, for example, about logistics or supply chain issues.
If you gave yourself a piece of advice about customer service 15 years ago, what would it be?
Stay focused on the customer. Pay attention to customer satisfaction so that the customer comes back and brings other customers. A happy customer can bring you two or three new customers. An unhappy customer will take ten away from you. Put all your energy into keeping the customer happy because word of mouth is very powerful.
What is your favourite GLBC memory?
There are so many events and fun things going on. But I won’t mention those. Instead, I have a wonderful memory from my first sixth months here when I took over a key account. This customer was asking for things that weren’t technically logical or possible. I worried they thought we just didn’t want to help them. I realized they never came to our facilities and lacked information about our industry. I had them over and that was very successful. We improved our connection with them and showed them our production process. That helped a lot because they understood how it all worked after that. That is a great memory for me.