This week’s guest post is offered by customer service expert Nicholas Goss. We both share a commitment to help small business owners Deliver the World’s Best Customer Experience. I connected with Nicholas first on Twitter and quickly began a fan of his customer service blog. He was kind enough to allow me to publish here one of his recent posts. Nicholas points out below that “Your company’s result are driven over the long term by your efficient delivery of the customer’s desired outcome.” Read on to learn out how to do just that. And find out how you, too, can connect with Nicholas at the end of the post.
“The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”
That’s a dangerous philosophy to hold in customer service… Clinging to a ‘results only’ attitude is unreasonable pragmatism; a poisonous policy, and a destructive programming.
Let’s talk about good intentions.
While the road to hell may be paved with them, I would bet that the road to heaven is as well; only with complimentary results.
The road to hell is also paved with BAD intentions, probably even more so than good ones, though the road to heaven is in no way paved with bad intentions whatsoever. Of course, the moral to the maxim is that ONLY results matter. But that’s not exactly true. As a matter of fact I would bet that purposefully having bad intentions that accidentally have good results would NOT open heaven’s door. And what results are we even talking about here? The Company’s desired outcomes? Or the Customers? It should be obvious who’s outcome should take precedence. Your company’s result are driven over the long term by your efficient delivery of the customer’s desired outcome. The most important point of all of this is that…
YOUR COMPANY’S INTENTIONS COLOR THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE CUSTOMER’S OUTCOME MORE THAN ANY OTHER FACTOR.
Don’t get me wrong… results absolutely matter. Your customers NEED RESULTS. But they must be wrapped in the best of intentions, or they’ll get results from someone else who knows how to convey good will towards them.
A better policy would be to focus on what your organization can control. While results are often heavily influenced and achieved by your company’s managed activities, they are not totally within the complete control of any organization. INTENTIONS ARE! Every member of your team has control over intention, with every customer. Sometimes, many times, it is the only thing within their control.
Color the customer’s desired outcome (the result that matters) with your company’s good intentions (the customer’s best interest). Here are some behavioral examples:
- To feel at home, cared for, comfortable, and at ease (customer’s desired outcome) you should Warmly Welcome your customer. If your intentions are oriented to your customer’s desired outcome, you will more than likely be successful and create loyalty. (HERE is a great example of a warm welcome)
- If your intentions are oriented toward your company’s desired outcome (anti-theft, direct marketing, promotions, upsells, etc) your efforts will become gimmicky, robotic, and ingenuine. Your customers deserve better than the Wal-Mart approach to greeting guests, if you are going to expect them to come back and do business with you.
- To be remembered, appreciated and valued (customer’s desired outcome) you should Recognize your customer by remembering and using their name. If your intentions are oriented to your customer’s desired outcome, you will more than likely be successful and create loyalty.
- If your intentions are oriented toward your company’s desired outcome (eliminating confusion when delivering and order, or addressing the next person in line to be served) your efforts may be resented by your customers, who start to feel like they’re being treated like cattle, or ‘just a number’. Chik-Fil-A has implemented this strategy and it has been great for their business. Starbucks has failed miserably at this as they have moved away from recognition and the use of names as a standard of service…. Oh, how the mighty have fallen!
Be very careful in how you deliver your service! Fill your every gesture and word with the good intentions (the customer’s best interest at heart) and focus on delivering the results that matter (the customer’s desired outcome) and you’ll quickly realize that RESULTS FOLLOW INTENTIONS… AND YOU CAN ONLY CONTROL THE LATTER.
About Nicholas Goss
My name is Nicholas Goss and I’m a Customer Service Expert. I thrive on helping you and your business do one thing, and one thing only….. BUILD LOYALTY! I want to help you develop and deliver great, memorable experiences that keep your customers coming back again, and again, and again. My passion is in serving small business owner master their customers’ experience through my coaching offering.