Have you ever frequented one business establish because you received incredibly good customer service and then left that business when the customer service was no longer incredibly good? What business management continues to fail to understand is that you left not because of poor products or services, but because of inconsistent customer service!
Inconsistency in customer service performance is probably the greatest reason why businesses suffer sagging sales. When performance is inconsistent, even the most loyal customers will seek to spend their dollars elsewhere.
In the spring of 2006, I experienced incredible service at a local gas station. The employee realized that her job was dependent upon satisfied and delighted loyal customers . She went the extra mile to cultivate customer loyalty. If the gasoline pumps, failed to deliver printed receipts, she gave the customer a sincere "I am sorry for that inconvenience and please have a free coffer on us. " If the beverage machine was not functioning correctly, she again provided a free beverage coupon. Her goal was to keep you a loyal and delighted customer. She knew only the would you return to spend more of your dollars.
Nine months later, I have been consistently experiencing just the opposite at the same gas station. When receipts do not print, I walk in expecting a friendly and sincere "I am sorry for your inconvenience. " What I receive is a fast and insincere – "Sorry" with no explanation or concern. And I have not seen a free drink or coffee coupon.
When customer service is consistently good or consistently bad, certain expectations are set within the customer's belief system. These expectations will drive certain attitudes that are demonstrated through behaviors. For business owners, this means either repeat business to their establishment or lost business to the competition just across the street or down the road.
If any business wishes to increase sales, then consistent customer service through the improved performance of all employees is the simplest way. Forget the specials, the lost lead items, but take action right now to provide excellent customer service that delights and is consistent yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Leanne Hoagland-Smith, M. S. is a business coach who specializes in strategic planning with offices near Chicago, IL and in Indianapolis, IN. She writes, speaks and coaches businesses along with individuals to quickly double results through the creation of an executable strategic plan.
One quick question, if you could secure one new client or breakthrough that one roadbloack holding you back from success, what would that mean to you? Then, take a risk and give me, Leanne, a call at 219.759.5601 to experience incredible results.
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