Disadvantages Can Improve Your Chance of Success from the book “David and Goliath” by one of my favorite authors Malcolm Gladwell
A customer calls and leaves a message. There is an issue with what you sold them and they are definitely NOT happy.
What do you do?
- Do you ignore the call and hope the situation solves itself?
- Do wait a few hours for them to cool off before you return the call?
- Do you pick up the phone and call the customer immediately?
- If you run away, the customer will come to the realization that you only care about your commissions from the sale and not the “solution” you sold them on. When you deal with the issue head on, you are communicating that you are there to help. You care about their success. And you want to make things better.
- Delaying making contact tells the customer that they are not your priority. And all customers want to feel like a priority.
If you are tied up in a meeting or with another customer, sending a quick email or text message acknowledging that you received their message and that you will get back to them later (and state the time) will signal to your angry customer that help is on its way. This will help calm them down a bit. But this feeling only lasts a short time, and disappears completely if you fail to call them at the time you stated.
- When you run into the fire, by getting back to them quickly, that response time tells your customers that you care. This is the first step in handling Customer 911 calls. Yes, they may yell, scream or jump up and down, but they will still appreciate your efforts, when you prove to them that you will support your solution, and put out the fire and ultimately removing their stress.
“Profit is the applause you get for taking care of your customers AND creating a motivating environment for your people.”
-Ken Blanchard, Jim Ballard and Fred Finch from the book Customer Mania
David Price, in his Toronto Blue Jays debut showed remarkable poise, in escaping a 4th inning jam where the Minnesota Twins had the bases loaded with none out, without giving up a run.
When it is clutch time in any situation, whether it be on the baseball diamond, family crisis or boardroom negotiations, the ones who thrive are the ones who can relax and perform the same way they do when the pressure is less.
On all stages of life, these clutch performers are worth their weight in gold.
If you have one of these folks on your team, treat them well, because they tend to be in high demand and if you don’t treat them well, there are many others that are willing to, and reap the rewards.