Your call is important to us: yeah right – How a culture of disservice allows any smart, hard-working company to trounce larger, richer competition where it matters most: in the hearts and minds of customers.
Are you like me? When you call a phone company or a credit card company and the recording asks you to punch in your account information, do you wonder why in the world when a person finally arrives on the line that the first question they ask you is the same question the recording did? What an insult and a time-waster!
Your call is important to us is a lie. Plain and simple. If my call was important, a person would answer it. They would ask me very few questions, because they would be working with sophisticated technology that would make it easier for them to serve me, an existing, loyal customer who pays my bills on time, thus supporting their company and by virtue of that, the job of the person on the other end of the telephone.
See? Not so important, are we?
So just why does so much of what is called “customer service” remain so god-awful poor?
I believe that the trouble often starts with growth. I know: disservice isn’t limited to large companies. Small companies can be just as guilty. It’s just that many large companies seem to write textbook cases on how not to treat a loyal customer. It’s a pretty simple story: when you start to put all of your focus on sales, you ultimately sacrifice service, which means you sacrifice the interests and well-being of your customers.
Larger companies, for a variety of reasons, end up focusing on the wrong things. Their obsession with sales means they lose sight of the fact that a loyal, happy customer is infinitely cheaper and more profitable than trying to buy new customers at the cost of previous loyalties. That of course, has been a great advantage for for our company.
Satisfied customers are profitable, but they do require service. Actually, what they really require are manners, appreciation and accountability. Is it really so ludicrous that a customer who promptly pays their bill should have to work so damn hard to be considered, respected or responded to? I sure don’t think so. But hey, don’t take my word for it. Talk with your family, friends and co-workers. How many of them love the service they receive? It’s a pretty short list, isn’t it?
There’s something really, really wrong with any business culture (regardless of company size) that uses nothing but raw sales numbers as the only guide to justify what kind of common sense and courtesy they will provide to their customer base.
Courtesy is something any smart owner-operated business understands.Small businesses, most of which having very limited marketing resources, will not survive very long without a believable and sustainable level of respect for customers. That respect has to be demonstrated in repeated actions, not just in words. That requires sacrifice and a willingness to do the right thing, which is always a little more work than cutting corners, isn’t it?
I got started in this business because I saw a massive disconnect between what the industry was offering consumers and what would constitute great customer service. The bar was set so low I couldn’t possibly fail. You know, provided I did the right thing for the customer, over and over and over…
We aren’t special, we just understand how precious happy customers are, and in this economy can you think of anything more important than a happy customer?
We look forward to your call and guaranteed, you won’t be disappointed with the way we greet you.