Let’s be honest, life would be so much easier if we didn’t have those pesky customers bothering us all day long. They ring, they visit, they email, they expect us to drop everything to attend to their every need. They really get in the way of running a business. What on earth can we do to stop these irritating disruptions that drag us away from all of the other important things that need to be done?
Well the answer of course is to keep that exact attitude up and the problem will be solved once and for all. Just give it a little time and you will have no customers to distract you, bother you or irritate you. Of course you won’t have any money, but hey, at least it will be peaceful.
As silly as this sounds, we all encounter businesses that seem to have this attitude firmly ingrained within their culture. They treat their customers with barely concealed contempt, sometimes even being outwardly rude.
From my experience, they are the same business owners who blame everyone else – the Government, the Council, the competition, the internet, the Greeks – when they inevitably go broke.
Any small business (or large business for that matter), that is not 100% customer centric, is in my opinion destined for doom. Getting this right is actually not that hard, all you have to do is make a promise and be totally committed to delivering on that promise.
If you really want to upset your customers, make them a promise and fail to deliver. To really make them cranky, give them the run around at the same time. Sadly this happens all too often and most of us have experienced the frustration of turning up at a business to pick up our order, only to find that it hasn’t arrived and no one has bothered to let us know.
The same issue applies with turning up for an appointment and you’re kept waiting. You managed to get there on time, but the business is not organised enough to see you on time. Or booking someone to come to your house at a certain time and they turn up four hours late, if at all. The most common broken promise comes from those businesses that simply can’t return a telephone call.
When it comes to being more successful as a small business, the place to start is always with your existing customers. Put your hand on your heart and ask yourself “what can I do better?”. How can I improve my communication, how can I speed up my service, is my follow up as good as it could and should be?
Successful businesses are committed to one thing – constant and never ending improvement, particularly when it comes to how they treat their customers. Master this and people will rave about you and your business, which is of course the best way to ensure a never ending stream of new customers coming your way.