Tag Archives: punishment

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customer punishment

Customer Punishment and Finding a Better Way

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Customer service and the customer experience, two things that many organizations claim they do right. After all, it is likely an integral part of the mission statement. What about customer punishment, is that on the agenda?

Customer View

Things often appear different when we see them through a different lens. What many businesses do for profit or non-profits do to satisfy metrics are not so favorable for the customer.

Software has become an interesting game. Once upon a time you bought a software program. Accounting, CRM, or graphic design tools, you bought them like you may buy a hammer at a hardware store.

A hammer, once purchased, is good to use forever, or until you break it or wear it out which the average person will theoretically never do. Your software purchase was once similar, use it for life, or until hardware or operating system improvements made it unworkable.

Today it is different, they want you to lease the software. The price isn’t better, it is usually more, and by the way, you must pay every month or every year. Imagine buying the hammer every month or year.

I know the software companies won’t agree, and claim that is how they stay in business, but is this a favorable customer experience?

Get More, Needed or Not

Cable television is another one in what is becoming a long list of those who knowingly issue customer punishment. You get exactly one hundred and eighty channels, but you watch about five.

How long will the customers tolerate this punishment? Who does this work for, the customer, or the vendor? The vendor may argue the price would be much higher to do it differently, until someone finds a way.

Subscription services or products have an interesting model for profit, are they customer friendly? They probably can be, but are they?

Customer Punishment

What are you doing that punishes the customer? Do you care enough to change the customer experience?

If the box is crushed do you deliver it anyway?

When the wait times are long but customers are willing to wait do you try to fix it?

Do you tell the customer to call back in an hour, or do you call them in fifty-five minutes or less with either a solution or update?

Have you asked yourself, “What is convenient, easy, or cost effective for your organization that is unfriendly to the customer experience?”

What are you doing that benefits your organization because it is tolerated by your customers? Are those things a form of customer punishment?

How long until someone (a competitor) finds a better way?

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten RespectNavigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+

 

 

 


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training customers

Are You Training Customers or Is It My Imagination?

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Marketers, account managers, and brands all have something in common. They want to achieve more sales, build the brand, and make the most of their high value customers. Are you training customers? Do you realize what you are teaching them?

Our professional business interactions are driven largely by emotion. As people we act and react to joy, pain, and adversity. Many business people will suggest that everyone should remove the emotion, but the act of trying removing emotion is driven by emotion.

Businesses and organizations everywhere are conditioning their clients and customers for future interactions. As people of emotion and habit, we learn to adapt to situations. What we learn leads us to make decisions and choices that our connected with our past experiences.

Training Customers

Our restaurant is closed on Monday.  Later the restaurant wonders why business is off. Monday is a business day and people want lunch. The people don’t remember what day, they just know that they are not always open.

Every weekend we have a sale. Why go there on Tuesday, just wait to see what happens on the weekend. Otherwise, you’ll pay too much.

We will email you sixteen times before the sale ends.  No need to act now. I will be notified repeatedly. Maybe something else comes along and I don’t act at all. I also don’t trust or understand the deadline.

When I call, I can get a better rate. (Hotels) Don’t use the online registration system, they charge more there. Continue calling a staff that is untrained and unavailable since the hotel strategy is to move reservations to the online system.

You: I want to cancel my subscription. Vendor: Wait, I can give you a better deal. Punish the auto-renew or higher lifetime value customers. Who cares, they are not planning to cancel.

Punishment

Do you believe your business or organization has a customer centric focus? Do you have a culture of service? How are you training customers?

Are you training them the right way or punishing them to fit your agenda?

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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design customer service dennis gilbert

3 Reasons Committees Shouldn’t Design Customer Service

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Today much of our customer service has a digital focus. We download, upload, and avoid the print out or hard copy. Digital services really aren’t the problem though. It might be more about the design. There are reasons why committees shouldn’t design customer service.

It is easy for the committee, the board of directors, and those in the ivory tower to get off track. They often design to protect profit while often not realizing that they are limiting the exact scenario they are trying to protect. Certainly, you can’t give it all away but you also need to have the correct focus.

Design Customer Service

Here are three reasons why committees shouldn’t design customer service:

  1. Operationally feasible. The committee usually (but not always) represents people across the operational framework. They design what works for operations while seeking solutions to resolve operational problems. Solutions for customers are often not their focus, even when they might suggest that they are.
  2. Top floor. We tend to understand our own framework. The front line is often very different from the top floor. Sure, you can see things from the top of the canyon, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll make the best choice to ride the white water in a raft at the bottom.
  3. Punishment. There is a delicate balance between helping the customer for more future profit and protecting the bottom line. Elevators and escalators are expensive but forcing your customers to take the stairs might be more punishment than they’ll accept. Literally or figuratively, committees often decide in favor of the stairs.

Design of the Committee

The argument might then become that the wrong people are on the committee. Certainly, that is a valid argument. That might lead us to consider how the committee formed.

Effort might not be the reason for failure.

It might be the design.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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