Many years ago, I learned that in the commoditised world, getting people to remember you is a challenge. Then, I managed a business with 600 sales reps and 300 support people. All the salespeople were on commission only, so they were the definition of ‘coin operated’. My challenge was to ensure that they always told the truth and advised customers correctly and accurately.
On rare occasions, one would go feral and not be totally truthful. Those times we learned how to solve problems, and to repair relationships with clients and customers.
From this exercise, we learned that often having a problem and resolving it positively was more impactful on the creation of a stronger business relationship than not having a problem at all.
Increasingly, we see this today. Phone to make a complaint and if you can endure the horrible On Hold music at most contact centres and you will find a conciliatory person wanting to resolve the problem fairly.
I had a problem with Uber in France in August 2019. The car hire company at the Nice airport was a kilometre from the main terminal, so when I ordered the Uber I dropped the pin where I was and waited. After 10 minutes of waiting for my driver, he called and asked why I wasn’t at the main terminal. Fair question, so I explained in broken French that this was where my hire car drop off point was, and that was where I wanted him to collect me, my wife and luggage.
A minute later I received a message from Uber saying he had cancelled the job and I was being charged 6 Euro for not turning up! I was unimpressed and reached for my OLA App. They don’t trade in France yet so I hailed a taxi. I paid 90 Euro to go to my hotel.
I complained, and Uber contacted me to apologise, refunding my 6 Euros. Over the following two weeks I used them another 50 times, at about US$2500 in total. Had they not done so, I would have deleted the App and waited for OLA or Lyft.
In doing so, Uber repaired the relationship and gained a lot more than 6 euros. The poor customer experience is forgotten, and in its place a company that cares for its customers and is committed to providing quality service.
Now all they need to do is contact Captivate Connect to upgrade their Music on hold, and I will be even happier!