What do you expect as a customer?

I bit my lip and counted to 10 yesterday while visiting an iconic Melbourne store. It was busy on the floor, there was a queue forming and one person serving - luckily it was me being served. Well, lets say me and four other people who telephoned the store and who were politely attended to immediately they rang ... and made me wait ... four times!

Am I mad? Yes. Should I be?

Back in the good 'ol days ... did I say that?! Let's just say when I was 'serving' and then training people to serve, we tried, we researched, we observed and we learnt that the action which most irritated customers when serving them is to start serving another person ... on the telephone!

That was some time ago, so I'm happy to be brought up to speed on the 'latest' on customer service. 

I appreciate customer service but oddly enough I go out of my way to look after myself rather than be in the hands of someone else. I prefer to cook for others than dine out, I shop on-line for loads of our goods, clothing and travel and these days I shop at the supermarket, use the register and pack myself!

I'm struggling at the moment using a travel agent to manage our OS holiday. Last year I spent too much time on the holiday project so I challenged myself to allow someone else to do all the work. We've not met, just communicated using email (very slowly) and its been over a month and we still haven't booked anything! I know I should have just done it myself.

As a customer, I expect:

  • attention - on me, no one else (absolutely focused)
  • answers - to my questions, queries and concerns (within an acceptable time frame)
  • additional information - more than I expected or asked about (the value add equation)

Am I asking too much?

I liken this service to being a leader. When you're leading, you're serving your people - you give them your full attention, you don't answer your phone in the middle of an important conversation - you answer their questions and offer ideas and approaches or just the reassurance that you're their to support them.

Rant over!