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Customer Service Ramblings

GASPworthy Service

Rambling #1. It was Harry Beckwith in his book Selling the Invisible who said, “A customer’s satisfaction is the gap between what the customer expects and what they get.”
Some would believe that Beckwith’s quote tells us to under promise, I think differently. I think what Beckwith is saying is that sales people should manage customer expectations.
If I send a letter from Denver to Savannah, and the post office delivers it in 3 days I’m pretty much okay with that….. they did their job. If I send the same letter to Savannah and Fed Ex delivers it in 3 days, I am disappointed. WHY?

It isn’t that the letter went faster or slower, in fact they both took 3 days. The thing that was different was my expectation of how long it would take. Hmmmmm.
Rambling #2. When most people think about high levels of customer satisfaction, they often think about two companies: Nordstrom’s and the Ritz Carlton.  Without dragging out the inevitable, there are a couple of reasons these are the two top of the mountain examples of great service:

  1. They know how to treat their customers, because
  2. They know how to treat their employees

Look at this flow-chart/hierarchy thing from Nordstrom’s above…

In most companies, the head honchos see themselves as the end all be all. Employees, customers, well…………., they are the way we make our money but that’s about it. Many give lip service to the customer and their employees, but just don’t deliver. Think about this, if my job is just something I tolerate because my company treats me like the enemy, how do you think I’m going to treat you?
It starts at the top…….
Truly believing that they are the bottom.
Rambling #3. I have an idea: Wanna be a great salesperson? Be nice.

Bruce Nordstrom said: ‘‘We can hire nice people and teach them to sell, but we can’t hire salespeople and teach them to be nice.’’
If you think it’s all about you, if you have a cynical, negative view of others, especially customers; if you think they OWE you something, you don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell at being REALLY good at sales.

‘‘Potential Nordies have to prove to us and to themselves that they really believe in helping others and genuinely like to give customer service.’’   Says John Whitacre, co-president
So if you’re not being perceived, by your people, as giving that extra layer of outstanding service, what I like to call GASPworthy service, you have to be self aware enough to ask yourself why.
Are you just not trying, don’t know how, or is it just not who you are?
There’s a difference, you know.