Do you ever look around and wonder what happened to common sense? Take, for example, the United Airlines debacle of having a paying passenger dragged off of an airplane to make room for their own employees. Then there’s the couple that received an extra charge on their credit card from a hotel where they stayed after writing a bad review on TripAdvisor.
Craziness! How could those companies’ leaders let such stupidity happen? It’s just common sense that you wouldn’t do that to customers. Customers are the best source of marketing any company has!
There is an old saying; Don’t throw stones when you live in a glass house.
The pace at which our businesses operate today often leaves the door open for those cringe-worthy moments to stumble right in. In our haste to get things done, in our efforts to be competitive and efficient, we forget to BE the customer.
You are a customer, no matter who you are. Every day, the experiences you have – good and bad – determine where you do business. It makes sense then to take the same satisfaction measures you set for others and use them for your own business.
Empower Your Employees to be Customers
Walk in your customers’ shoes, and empower every one of your employees to do the same. If you don’t understand (or appreciate) an experience as a customer, you can be pretty certain your own customers won’t either.
The popular television series Undercover Boss exposes executives to the customer experience when they are disguised and take on an employee’s role. Their goal is to learn about what their employees and customers think. The experiences are eye-openers and these executives come away knowing a great deal more about how their companies need to operate.
But, you don’t need to go on television in order to improve your customers’ experiences. Take a long, hard look at your operation and make sure your practices pass the common-sense test. If you wouldn’t like something, change it.
A company’s operations shouldn’t start with the company’s needs; it begins with the customers’ needs. How does a change in pricing, a new phone system, a new website, new products, etc…, appear to your customers?
Step into their shoes, BE your customer. And then see just how well they’ll market your company!
“We take most of the money that we could have spent on paid advertising and instead put it back into the customer experience. Then we let the customers be our marketing.” ~ Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com