Friday, October 17, 2014

What can you learn from your Most “Unhappy” Customer?

Your most unhappy customers are the ones you will learn most from!
Digital is the age of customer. Customer intimacy is the most sustainable strategic platform, from it comes with the fountain of innovation and meaningful operation performance adapted to customer needs. Not only shall you embrace your loyal, repeat customers, but also do not feel frustrated with your unhappy customers because your most unhappy customers are the ones you will learn most from.

Getting the feedback is the first part of the resolution process. Actually acknowledge that the problem could be within, and not because a customer is overly demanding is the next step. Don't discount the complaint of a single customer. There is almost always a true issue and root cause at the heart of the matter. When your organization is 'open' for feedback and once you make a genuine effort to get one through follow-up calls, questionnaire, etc, you will see >80% of 'unhappy' customers will tell you what they thought about your service and make suggestions on how to improve it. However, don't force customers to deal with your complexity--you will lose them if you do.

Business process review: Sometimes you even need to look at your business process of how you're requesting feedback for your services, but once you have customers’ feedback, the questions is, what are you going to do about it. Do you have a process to 'learn' from these and 'apply' changes into organization in systematic way? Learning is only valuable when it results into making changes for better outcomes.

Great companies find ways to engage and lead. To be successful as playing in the social media space becomes critical to long term business success, companies must become part of the conversation and monitor the conversation as well in order to determine what's important and needs changing vs. what's anecdotal. Everything can't change all at once - that would be chaos - but users can know what makes the agenda and what cannot and why. Those conversations might just "earn" some credits in the marketplace while building trust within the specific social community. More often, if you introduce and apply the correct contact strategies and proactively engage with your customers, you can get the collective insight through strategic fact find, to determine: 
1). general perceived belief - cost and service delivery 
2). service requirements / need analysis 
3). root cause of business issues 

The cultural emphasis-treat your employees as your customers as well. And if your customer-facing employees are satisfied and enjoy their work, they will be more likely to address the customer's concern; if employees who don't feel well-taken-care-of will often have a tough time taking good care of customers...but customers pay the bills and keep people employed.

Hence, it is strategic to learn from your most unhappy customers. Introducing such strategies not only allows a more open and honest rapport with customers, but also allows business growth and change - in line with customer needs and build the right products/services. 


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