Two different experiences
I have had two different experiences the last 24 hours with two companies that I bought services from. First one: a car testing facility yesterday and this morning a car repair shop. Which one do you think performed best focusing on the personal meeting?
Arriving at the car testing facility, lets call it ”A”, I had like most customers doubts about how this would go even if the car was in great shape. Going to car testing facility is a bit like going to the dentist, you do it every year and you really don´t know what the verdict will be.
I felt the person I meet was aware of this maybe not. His way of greeting me, the two other car owners that arrived same time was instant and super sharp (he worked alone). Coming out on the tarmac, meeting all of us with a great smile, acknowledging the older mans ´s early arrival. The whole conversation during the testing is smooth from his side. I am thinking about ”A” company values and company culture. What kind of leadership has shaped this behavior or is it simply an act of a single employee that loves his/her job? I think about how well he was controlling what I think about ”A” company.
Next experience. I am sitting this morning at a car repair shop in Uppsala lets call it B. They reached out in social medias saying the Corona had affected their business som much and now offer 30% discount. So I booked a change to new tires on the family´s Volvo. Now realising after met their staff and listened to a couple of customer conversations that the Corona is not their only challenge. it´s the way they meet their customer or maybe not meet their customer. I see this every day, I think you do that to.
Change one small thing
I start thinking, what would happen if they only changed one small thing: how they would greet every customer with: “Hello, we are so glad you choosed us at ”B” company to service your car”. I think it would put the customers in a very positive state of mind, with only that little simple and small comment. The customer will remember THIS the most not how the car was serviced. After all, I don´t know that, not being physically present where they worked on the car.
After two hours something happens, Somebody is saying that my car is ready. This person changes the whole experience into something extremely positive. I started thinking, what did he do? My analysis is that it was the combination of a friendly voice, nice message, his intonation in his message, the open body language, the positive face expression and certainly a lot more that i didn´t catch.
The only conclusion I can come to is that companies that understand the power of behavior and form a strategy and make the employees understand WHY is its important and WHY they should chage their way of communication will succeed on a whole different level. The power av behavioural aspects between the companies´people that meet the customer and the customer. How to act, use non verbal communication to create fantastic values, build rapport between customer and the company. That connection that makes the customer more often pay full price and be extremely loyal. The difference that makes the difference (source: Gregory Bateson)
Of course the different behaviors here that lead to my experience is ultimately a leadership question. I believe it is that simple. Company culture matters most and make great impact in successful organisations. But it seems like it´s difficult to understand how small changes can create large values. Would you agree with me on that?
Finally, I would like to share a comment from my friend Fredrik who runs a painter company (painting walls). ”If we communicate flawlessly the customer will never look at how we painted the trim around windows and doors. But If we DON´T communicate well, they will hunt down every single microscopic misstake”.
Have a great Friday
(why was this post written in English? I don´t know :). Wanted to try something new.