Will Lukang, PMP, CSM, MBA, MASCL
About a week ago, I post a message on one of the appliance merchant’s site to inquire about their program. The next day I receive a response asking me some questions in order to address my needs.
The next day, I received a response regarding my inquiry and he also mention that I should reach out to the person at the branch to further my request. I replied to his message and thanked him for his time, but at the same time I mentioned that he could have taken it to the next level by contacting the branch and clarifying the matter on behalf of the customer. It was a perfect opportunity for him to make a great impression on the customer.
My perspective is that every touch point with our customer is an opportunity to make an impression. When we make a good impression, the customer remembers that experience and it could provide a compelling reason to do business or continue to do business with us. Therefore, we need to take advantage of each of the opportunities, akin to playing baseball (three tries before you lose your turn) that you want to do your best in each of your at bats.
Every company has to be known for something, some for best quality, best in innovation, best in price, or any other for that matter. For example, your firm is second best in the quality category, but you have topnotch customer service. In the end, you might be able slowly increase your market share because of your ability to serve your customer. Let me reiterate that by no means do I promote that bad quality and excellent service will get you anywhere. It is important that you have a good service or product in order for you to talk about customer service, because customer service alone is not going to get the job done.
Going back to my point on my e-mail exchange with the customer service person at this appliance merchant, he replied and explained to me why he did not reach out to the branch on my behalf. According to him, he was avoiding confusion, as it already happened a couple times with them in the past. Then he said the situation does put everyone in a tough situation. Nonetheless I was impressed that he took the time to explain to me the situation rather than ignoring my response altogether. He also apologized and explained that he wanted to avoid the message coming across as being rude. As a customer, I was glad that he explained himself. Because of the email exchange and my interaction with their branch folks, I’m leaning toward doing business with them