Customer Service, Customer Experience


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Customer Service, Customer Experience

The past is the past and in the construction trades the past business practices needs to vanish. The old way of thinking must evolve in today’s market and economy. One old idea and concept that requires you to discard immediately is; the customer is lucky to have me. Today’s market and economy centers around 2 major qualities and they are; 1 customer experience, 2. customer service. Your companies best practices should align and be centered on these 2 concepts.

I stumbled upon a conversation concerning a tenant, plumber, and management company. What I read made my jaw drop in disgust and wondering why this fellow has a job. The tenant had a leak in his lavatory cabinet. The plumber was told the cabinet would be cleared however the vast majority of times cabinets are not emptied of their contents by home owners or tenants.

This plumber gets into an argument over who should clean out the cabinet of its contents. The tenant starts to swear at the plumber. The plumber does not believe anyone should talk to them in this manner. I agree with the plumber, you are not a doormat however when it is you that caused the issue then it is you that must suffer the consequences of your actions.

This plumber acts like a grade school child and immediately runs to the management company to tell on the tenant. Remember only 1 side of the story is being embellished to the management company and in the forum thread. We all know there are 3 sides to every story, mine, theirs, and the truth.

The management runs to the rescue of the plumber by confronting the tenant about the events that have taken place. A heated situation becomes worse due to the ignorance of the plumber. The tenants past behavior is not relevant to this situation. Keep in mind that most plumbing companies will have their plumber’s empty cabinets that they may have to work inside.

Now further information is given that should have been included in the beginning enters into the equation. The new information is the tenant is handicapped and in a wheelchair. This makes this plumbers action more inexcusable. It is not easy for the tenant to get down and clear out his cabinet compared to a fully functional plumber. How would you rate this customer experience? How would you rate this customer service? How do you rate the behavior?

How difficult would this have been for the plumber to just say I’ll take care of it, please do not worry about it? Instead the situation went similar to this I am not working in this mess until it is cleaned out. You were told to have it clean for me and it is not. Clean it out or I’ll leave or go tell the management company.

There are a lot of things wrong with this situation. Yes the tenant or home owner should have cleaned the cabinet out. It is not the end of the world when the person does not clean the contents and removes them from the cabinet. It is not relevant that other people live in the home that could have cleared the cabinet. The issue is it was not emptied. The solution is to empty the contents and charge for the time. The plumber did make the statement he was paid while the management company debated this with the tenant. What’s the problem?

Keeping your mouth shut and doing what is right gives the customer great service and a wonderful experience. The mindset of the plumber is; the management company is paying the bill and the tenant does not deserve to receive their respect or tolerance. Personally I would probably have had the same reaction as the tenant.

I am handicapped however it is not visibly noticeable by others. Try to imagine all of your customers that are exactly the same way. Having physical disabilities that will not allow them to do normal things that most people can do is very frustrating and demeaning. Having had the ability years ago and now admitting that it is no longer possible is hard to admit and accept. Being forced to remember your deficiencies by an ignorant person multiplies that frustration immensely. Before you react think outside the lines and stop thinking linear. It is not about you it is all about the customer and their experience.

The key to success with any service type business is how you make your customer’s feel. What you did is long forgotten however how you made them feel is remembered a long time and is talked about frequently among family, friends, and acquaintances. In the case of the apartment complex it is being discussed between tenants .When this plumbers treatment of the tenants becomes his normal behavior and treatment due to him winning this time will eventually result in lost work at this complex. There are consequences for your behavior.

Where I am bothered more by this inexcusable behavior is with the sheer number of contractors that applauded his behavior and action. There seems to be this animosity towards customers that they deserve less than they receive. It also resonates to anyone who reads that piece of garbage that these plumbers receive this kind of treatment frequently from their customers. This then leads us to the fact that customers are lacking great customer service and their experience is less than superlative from quite a few companies.

It is time to start giving the customer fantastic service that rewards the customer with an exciting experience that they will always remember. Not every customer is satisfied and it is impossible to satisfy each customer however the customer should feel like you did your best. Deliver with exceptional service backed-up by fantastic customer experience and start to realize your companies potential to become a force in your community.

http://www.practicebetterbusiness.com

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About practicebetterbusiness

Author of Outside the Business Box: All about Sales Build a better you and increase your earning potential

Posted on June 15, 2013, in construction services, electrical sales, How to sell HVAC, How to sell plumbing, HVAC sales, plumbing sales, practicebetterbusiness.com, Selling HVAC, Selling Plumbing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Suzanne boyer

    Great piece Richard! The scenario described is a reflection of how clients want to whisk you through their plumbing projects. They do not expect the plumber to spend time getting to kniow them or vice versa, because of past experience(s). The saying you reap what you so really comes into play here. I always clear the cabinet matter , and tell the homeowner I will put it back but probably not in the manner they had it organized.

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