Customers have changed! Research shows their expectations for customer service have increased significantly in the last 12 months. Forbes reports that 73% of companies with above-average customer experience perform better financially than their competitors. For today’s wired and dangerous customer any encounter with indifferent service fosters a quick exit to a new provider.
Imagine a quiet Saturday afternoon watching a favorite sports event suddenly interrupted by a loud popping sound immediately followed by smoke in the house. What flashes through your mind is a combination of I just lost the big screen TV, the house is on fire and much later in the day – who won the game I was watching?
My wife shut down all of the power while I checked out the room adjoining the big screen TV which had filled with smoke. “Call the fire department now,” I exclaimed! In just a few minutes we heard the welcome sound of sirens and major diesel engines straining to get to the scene quickly. As I met the firemen in the driveway I let them know we had smoke in the house but I didn’t think the house was on fire. What I witnessed next was a powerful experience composed of a fantastic blend of concern for our safety, professional expertise on display, and well thought out recommendations for the next steps on a cold wintery afternoon. One of the fire trucks departed but the other stayed to talk us through their recommended next steps. Their concern for our safety and well-being was always on display as was their professionalism and politeness. Great job by the Atlanta Fire Department’s Engine Company 26!
Following one of their early recommendations, my wife had already reached our electrician with Mr. Sparky. Steve arrived in about 30 minutes concerned about our situation and especially the surge protector in the electrical panel that was smoking and still very hot! Steve patiently listened to our story and the firemen’s analysis before beginning his own thorough examination. He quickly identified the source of the power surge as a power company issue and offered to place a call to Georgia Power for us. After updating the Customer Service Representative on our dangerous situation Steve informed us he would need to replace one of the surge protectors in our box and wanted to check out everything else. Steve waited patiently with us for the Georgia Power Trouble man to arrive.
Very shortly we saw the Georgia Power truck pull up in front of the house. As the Trouble man stepped out of his truck he greeted us and said I remember this house and those two dogs! Greg had in fact replaced the line serving our home two years ago. He was the image of an experienced and very capable professional as he reviewed the situation with Steve and updated me on what he suspected the problem was. Greg quickly went to work to remedy the problem being ever mindful of our property and everyone’s safety. As he turned our power back on he briefed me on everything he did, things we could do to prevent a recurrence, and thanked me for being a Georgia Power customer.
Our experience with all three of these service providers was fantastic! They were calm in the face of an emergency, thoughtful, and professional in their communication with us, and demonstrated appropriate concern for our safety then and in the future. All were polite and all demonstrated appropriate urgency while following safe procedures and patiently explaining their work. This is a great formula for delivering powerful experiences to your customers! How powerful is the experience you are currently delivering to customers?
Be sure to check out Chip’s latest post.
Chip’s newest book, Inside Your Customer’s Imagination, was released recently. It is ranked the #1 best seller for new releases by Amazon! We hope you will buy a copy. And, if you enjoy it, we hope you will take time to review it on the book site you used to purchase the book.