How well do you meet the expectations of your customers?  Do you take for granted the little things and details that don’t mean much to you but can be a major disappointment to your customers? Let me share with you my disappointment with a recent visit to a self-service gas station.

While traveling to speak at an event, I stopped at a local gas station along the highway to fill up.  I had been driving for a while and noticed that my front and back windshields were extremely dirty from my travels.  It was a perfect time to stop, get gas, grab a cup of coffee to go and of course take care of cleaning my windshields.  As I was pumping gas, I reached for the squeegee in the container filled with cleaner solution to clean my windshields. This particular container was empty and dry. Not a big deal. So I looked for a squeegee at another gas pumping area.  Same result. In fact, all the squeegee  containers at this gas station were empty and dry which would make the squeegee useless. How frustrating was that?

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After filling my tank and going inside to purchase a coffee to go, I shared my dilemma with the cashier and asked if they planned on filling the containers.  Her response was that someone would get to it later. Obviously, it was not important to her or to even to find someone who could fulfill my request.  Based on her lack of caring, I decided not to buy my coffee there and just walked out.

Although this was just a minor thing, it was important to me and my simple expectations at this self-service gas station were not met. If a gas station is going to provide a squeegee for its patrons to use to clean their wind shields, should it not be important to carry out and meet that expectation?  Do you think this is important to them or that they even care? They are just a gas station right? Well by not meeting my important expectation, they lost me as a future customer.
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Are you meeting the simple and important expectations of your customers? Are you doing what you say you will do and provide the basic service that your customers come to expect? Are people available to serve your customers? Do you answer your phones or just let them ring? Do you open your business on time, shelves adequately stocked, equipment working properly, customer area and parking lots clean and the list goes on? Better yet, why not exceed those expectations and make the customer experience memorable?

Disney is all about paying attention to the finest details to meet and exceed the expectations of the customer experience and make it memorable.  Every business should do the same. Remember the saying, “If you don’t take care of your customers someone else will.”

Today, can you afford to lose any customers?  Your competition is fierce. Give your customers the experience they expect and provide more to exceed their expectations. The results will be magical!