Let’s be honest. Mistakes happen. How you handle them makes all the difference.

One thing that fustrates me and I am sure it frustrates your customers as well, is getting the customer’s order wrong. Like I said, mistakes do happen but it’s never easy to swallow. When a customer places an order, it means it is important and is our responsibility as a business is to get it right.

I have helped many of my clients to implement steps in place to make sure nothing can go wrong. But there are often times when people don’t follow the steps. Again, this can be very frustrating to all parties involved…the customer, business owner and staff.

I am sure we all have been a victim of a business who got an order wrong. What’s even more annoying is their process to fix the mistake that we the customer have to go through just to get the problem resolved. Many times we often have to go through a painstaking process just to get a refund or replacement. Not to mention the business then includes some sort of short time restriction in order to claim and receive the refund. Certainly a hassle!  I think the business just hopes that the customer will give up and not be bothered. Unfortunately many customers do give up or not even bother to pursue the process because they know it will probably be a hassle. Who needs that? The customer will just decide not to return.

When an error occurs, you and your staff must do all that you can to fix the problem as soon as possible so that your customer knows that you care about what happened. Refunding the item or replacing it should be your top priority. It may cost you in time and in money to fix the wrong, but taking this action may be the difference in keeping your customer rather than having them go to your competitor the next time.

Develop and begin implementing steps with your staff to prevent problems from ocurring in the first place. Especially if you find any particular issues or the same issues ocurring often and consistently. Those are the ones you should work on first because they are causing you to lose customers and future business.

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Then come up with quick and easy solutions that can be performed by any employee, not just managers, to resolve the customer’s issue. That means empowering your front line staff. Trust me when I tell you that your staff, if allowed to solve the problem on the spot, will cost you less money and time then if you had to resolve it yourself. It is okay to give your frontline staff some parameters, but as long as it is in the best interest of your customer, it will be a good decision.

I’ve seen 16 year old cashiers at Chick-fil-a,  solve customer problems right on the spot, without asking for a manager. Customers are amazed and appreciate the response so don’t give me the baloney that only managers and business owners can solve customer issues. Train and treat your employees like they make a difference and they will.

You also need to think about the stories that will be shared by your customers from their experience, both good and bad.  I’ve alway said; “Marketing is not about selling products and services but about the stories that get told by your customers.”  Would you prefer a good story or a bad one? That’s an easy question to answer.

Need help? Contact John today for a FREE Strategy Session Call at info@johnformica.com