Quality in a service or product is not what you put into it. It is what the client or customer gets out of it.
- Peter Drucker
I stayed in a new Marriott Courtyard hotel a while back. The situation was that it was recently opened and should not have been opened until the problems were worked out and management was ready. There were many problems, believe me and it started as a significant customer failure.
But not only did the staff take care of the issues for me, the manager, once he got me back to ‘even’, continued to build the relationship with me. His techniques included exceptional, personalized service – using my name in face-to-face greetings, and continued follow-up and attention to detail. He actually made me believe I was the best customer he had ever had. Not only did I forget about the earlier problems, but I was feeling great about the entire three-day experience.
Service recovery requires remaining with your customer, through follow-up, and through unexpected contact well after the issue. All customers deserve our best service … but the ones that have a negative experience represent an opportunity to define a business.
Such an opportunity represents an opportunity to turn customers into enthusiasts and maybe even advocates. And that requires going beyond the ‘break-even’ point for that customer.
Research has shown time and time again that customers who reported a problem and were delighted with the outcome have higher satisfaction with the business than the ones who never experienced a problem. So these results show the importance of turning customer failure into full customer recovery.
Why should any company not want to seize such an opportunity?
Try it … the next time you have a customer who has had a back experience with your business.
Please share one of your experiences with negative customers with this community.
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