Great Service Equals Big Dollars

by RJ on September 7, 2012

Great Service Equals Big Dollars

When was the last time you received good service without being expected to leave a large tip?  The move “Back to the Future” has a memorable scene when Michael J. Fox goes back to 1955 and walks through town. We hear in the background the music of “Mr. Sandman” and at the Texaco Gas Station, a car pulls up to the gas pump. Immediately four, not one, but four attendants in full uniform rush out to service the customer. One attendant is washing the windows, headlights and taillights, while another attendant is checking the oil, windshield washer fluid, belts and hoses. The third is pumping the gas while the fourth is checking the air in your tires.


If you drive into a gas station today you probably will not even find any full service attendants at all. If there is one, you won’t find anyone rushing out to help you. You may have to beep the horn several times and if the attendant comes out he will probably have look on his face as if to say “why don’t you use the self serve you turkey.”


The 1950’s were the heyday for American businesses. The emphasis was on producing quality products and providing quality service. It started to change in the 60’s when a progressive type of administration that was socially conscious with a real concern in three areas. They were environmental pollution, human rights and consumer rights. These are not bad concerns but these concerns translated into increased costs on the way we do business today.


Who remembers the Senator of Ohio? John Glenn. Do you remember when what year he went into space? 1962. Just before he was going to blast up in space, a reporter asked him what he would do if those rockets did not work and he couldn’t get back home. John Glen jokingly said “it would spoil my whole day” Did he have a great attitude?


When John Glenn returned, the Senate asked him what he was thinking about while he was hurtling through space toward the earth at such a phenomenal speed. Again John Glenn said jokingly “I hope these brakes work because this ship was built by the lowest bidder”


In the 70’s the only people who wanted to get married were priests. In the 80’s the Me generation emerged. A manager asked his new secretary why you don’t ever answer the phone. She said why should I; 9 out of 10 times it’s for you.


Today there are millions of Americans not working but thank God they have jobs. Ford Motor Company talks about “Quality being Job # 1” We need to understand that quality has become a given. If you don’t provide a high quality product you are in serious trouble. Poor quality may prevent you from giving a customer the satisfaction that they looking for when they buy your product or service. Are you really as courteous or helpful that you can be to customers or your fellow human being?


Good service will earn you the respect and repeat business for survival. Zappos is a great example of a growing company built on great service. If you are ever inLas Vegas, take the free tour given every day to experience why they are one of the great service oriented companies. Remember the 1-11-55 rule. One customer who has a bad experience with a company will tell on average of 11 people about the bad experience. In turn each of those 11 will tell another 5 people which now means that 55 people know about the bad experience.


Remember the last time that you were on the other side of the fence and a sales clerk refused to listen to your problems because he or she was just about to take a coffee break, go to lunch, or leave for the day. Maybe it was when you called a company to cancel an order and were transferred three different times and yet despite all your work it was shipped anyway. How about the lunch hour that you wasted while waiting in line at the bank or DMV and were in the wrong line or told that they could not help you?


Across the world, many companies have found that great customer service can make the difference between building a customer’s loyalty or losing that customer forever. Companies who have ignored great customer service have felt the crunch from competitors who have provided the type of great service that customers expect. You can be very successful today by changing your company’s service culture to one of respect and delivering on your promises of great products and service. Good luck out there.

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