We were lucky to catch up with Shannon Matthews recently and have shared our conversation below.
Hi Shannon, thanks for joining us today. Showing clients you appreciate them is something I think most folks want to do – but it’s not always clear how to do it in a meaningful way. What’s one of the best examples of client appreciation you can share with us?
Child Support Specialists first met Shonterrias Oliver in 2005. At the time, I did not realize Ms. Oliver was homeless. She called our office and completed an application for child support. We often spoke with her on the phone developed a friendship over the years. Shortly after coming to CSS, we started collecting child support for her. Ms. Oliver would reach out to me once in a while to share good news and bad news, like her growing daughter graduating a school. Being a single parent is complex and a struggle sometimes, even with support. We would send extra help if needed. If the children needed shoes, we would send shoes. If the daughter has a birthday, we try to send something special. We spoke about our children regularly. Last year, Ms. Oliver started her own business. During a call, she said she was homeless when she first came to CSS. I asked her why she never told me. She noted that it was not necessary at the time. She explained that without the help from the Child Support Specialists, she may not be where she is today. We may have helped a client with a difficult situation, but she said it was much more than child support and extra needed items; the deep phone conversations. I was happy to hear that our friendship meant as much to her as it did to me. Getting to know Ms. Oliver personally and watching her succeed was the best thing I have ever done for a client.
Shannon, before we move on to more of these sorts of questions, can you take some time to bring our readers up to speed on you and what you do?
I decided to get involved with Child Support Specialists to help better the lives of the children in single-family homes. I grew up in a single-parent household, and I understand that there are struggles for the parents and the children. I believe all children deserve the same opportunities regardless of income, race, or family unit. In 2021, I founded the Child Support Specialists Foundation. The foundation helps single-parents with Back to School costs and Christmas gifts. I am most proud of the foundation because I see the impact it has on single-parent families.
What do you think helped you build your reputation within your market?
Child Support Specialists continues to build our reputation by being a different child support agency. We want to stay a small business to provide personal care and attention to our clients. We listen to our clients and always work hard to resolve any issues. Every client is appreciated, and we show this with contests or gifts. For example, this Valentine’s Day, we are giving out gift cards for moms and dads so they can enjoy the special day.
We’d love to hear about how you keep in touch with clients.
Child Support Specialists considers all clients’ family. We have many clients that have been with us for eighteen years. My favorite way to keep in touch with clients is thru social media and emails. Clients enjoy sending me pictures of graduations and even weddings. It is my favorite part of my job. I feel that I get to know many families and love to see the special moments. We encourage clients to share events or pictures with us.