Major Customer Expectations



 We are expected to provide solutions to problems.  If we don’t, the customer will go somewhere else.  There are three types of problems our customers expect us to solve: complaints, needs and non-business problems.  Complaints are obvious.  A customer calls up with a complaint and expects you to fix whatever their “problem” is.  Hopefully, this is not an ongoing occurrence.  Second, there is a need type of problem.  For example, let’s say you are in the hotel business.  A traveller needs a place to stay for the night, and your hotel is the solution to the traveller’s need.  You solve their problem by having a nice, comfortable room that meets if not exceeds, their expectations.  Third, there is the non-business type of problem.  A good example might be that you are working in a retail store and someone comes in asking to use the phone because of a flat tire.  You have a choice.  You can send them to an outside pay phone or you can call them a tow truck.  Do the latter and you have solved a non-business problem and created some good P.R., if not goodwill.    

We are expected to be accountable.  What this means is that if a customer comes to you with a problem, complaint, request, etc., you own it.  You don’t pass it off to someone else because “it is not your department.”  But, that doesn’t necessarily mean you are the one that takes care of this complaint or request.  As an example, let’s say that you are a guest at a hotel.  You check into your room, and when you get there, you find out your nightstand light is burned out.  On your way to dinner, you tell the front desk manager about the problem.  He says he will take care of it.  Now, do you really think the front desk manager is going to drop what he is doing and run upstairs to change your burned-out light bulb?  I don’t think so.  But what he will hopefully do is call the maintenance department to have the light fixed.  That’s good, but not good enough.  The front desk manager that is truly accountable to you, the guest, will follow up with maintenance to make sure the light bulb was changed.  Even though the front desk manager didn’t fix the light, he took ownership of the problem.

Finally, we are expected to be consistent.  That means we are good all of the time, not just some of the time.  Imagine that it is the first time you have been out to a particular restaurant for dinner, and the food and service were great.  You can’t wait to go back.  Two weeks later you take some friends back to the restaurant only to find that the service is fair and the food just okay.  You were so excited from the last time, but this time they let you down.  Do you ever go back?  With all of the great restaurants to choose from, probably not.  You see, you can’t be great just some of the time.  You have to be great all of the time.  Consistency goes back to the first and foremost customer expectation, quality.  It is doing it right the first time every time, with the same high level of quality and reliability.


Read more:

Psychological Debt

Communication Champions

The Art Of Complex Sales

Life Rewards Action

Handling Customer Complaints

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