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Old 25th August 2010, 01:55 PM   #1
AngelBiz
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Default Is Customer Always Right?

"Customer is always right" has become a mantra for many small business consultants and owners. While this is true in many cases, we find it hard to accept it without qualification. Many customers take advantage of businesses who adopt this philosophy.

So how can you continue to provide excellent customer service; while ensuring that your business is not being taken advantage of?

Read more - http://www.angelbusinessadvisors.com...%99t-think-so/

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Old 25th August 2010, 09:37 PM   #2
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To me it is not that the customer is always right, it is more that you must do everything you can to keep a customer, because it costs so much more to get a new customer.

I think most business owners with some customer service experience can most of the time tell when they are dealing with an unreasonable customer. That is where I draw the line.

In the final analysis do everything you can to keep the customer, but it will turn out to be a judgment call. If the customer will not be reasonable with the resolution you propose then you have to draw the line and possibly forgo the opportunity to work with that customer in the future. No matter what rules you make in dealing with these situations, emotion will take over at times and you have to make your own assessment if the customer is being reasonable.

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Old 25th August 2010, 11:49 PM   #3
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Default Profiling Your Potential Customers

Quote:
Originally Posted by AngelBiz View Post
So how can you continue to provide excellent customer service; while ensuring that your business is not being taken advantage of?
It is easy in our business to go along with a potential customer and provide them with a detailed brief or quote prior to closing the sale.
But it is frustrating when they do not follow through and we lose them along the way.
Sometimes we use our intuition to second guess which inquiries are genuine and which are time wasters or looking to use our quote to get a lower price or better result with a preferred supplier.

Is there a simple way to qualify prospects immediately without appearing rude or overly officious?

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Old 26th August 2010, 11:20 AM   #4
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The problem is that 'the customer is always right' gets abused. The second problem is that there are a host of people who know this and play on this.

You will know pretty soon in your dealing with a customer. As much as it hurts, sometimes you just have to return the money and thank them for considering your product/service. I know, it hurts. It really hurts. But if a customer is going to consume ALL of your time and resources, you will quickly find that the return of their money is a lot easier to deal with.

Hope this helps!

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Old 26th August 2010, 07:54 PM   #5
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The article sums things up nicely.

Quote:
Is there a simple way to qualify prospects immediately without appearing rude or overly officious?
Good question. Based on my experience I think that is almost a catch-22. Using this from the article as a base -

Quote:
you should start with the understanding and assumption that customer is right and provide the excellent customer service that is required for the success of any small business.
Well, that is the tactic that you are going to have an attitude that 99% of people are good and 1% are bad. That works well with training. The alternative is to approach people with an attitude of 99% of people are bad and 1% are good. I believe as soon as you let that sort of attitude creep into your thinking signals are sent to the customer unconsciously versus consciously with the scenario in the article. That's the catch22 to me, its tough to qualify someone based on this without showing an attitude that is unconsciously a negative.

My approach, while learning patterns of bad customers can be helpful to dissuade people for taking advantage of you ... focus on the patterns of the good customers. How did you get them, and what makes them unique ... then seek that out more and more. Eventually, your time and energy is consumed only by good customers if that is what you focus on. Don't focus on bad customers too much, the attitude will shine through, imo

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Old 26th August 2010, 10:51 PM   #6
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Yes I agree with it and I disagree with it at the same time.

here is how you should do it.

whether you agree with them or not, you should pretend they are right

in many situations, it's not your fault but the only thing you can do is say
'I am so sorry' (sometimes it's better to say this instead of arguing)

Just say 'I am sorry' like when someone is trying to convince you about stupid stuff, it would save your time to say 'yes sir you are right'


eg: some people come into my yogurt shop, try $2 worth of sample and buy $3 worth of yogurt. I don't care if I starve to death. but how can I cover the rent if I have majority of customers like that. but what can you do?
you just have to shut your mouth. that's it.
Although you are losing money right there, you can't say anything because people like that would get mad and spread bad words.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AngelBiz View Post
"Customer is always right" has become a mantra for many small business consultants and owners. While this is true in many cases, we find it hard to accept it without qualification. Many customers take advantage of businesses who adopt this philosophy.

So how can you continue to provide excellent customer service; while ensuring that your business is not being taken advantage of?

Read more - http://www.angelbusinessadvisors.com...%99t-think-so/


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Old 27th August 2010, 06:52 AM   #7
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I think if we speak about business which main aim is to get profit this is true as customers bring money and they are going to be true all the time.

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Old 27th August 2010, 03:38 PM   #8
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It has to be remembered why the customer is always right. This article on why it's not necessarily right is quite interesting, outlines how the phrase was coined and how it can be abused by some customers.

I agree entirely with doing everything you can for a customer, but sometimes a line needs to be drawn. Customers who consistently cost you money are just not worth having. But remember, they're usually the ones who love to talk. Catch 22.

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Old 28th August 2010, 01:50 PM   #9
AngelBiz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hampers View Post
It is easy in our business to go along with a potential customer and provide them with a detailed brief or quote prior to closing the sale.
But it is frustrating when they do not follow through and we lose them along the way.
Sometimes we use our intuition to second guess which inquiries are genuine and which are time wasters or looking to use our quote to get a lower price or better result with a preferred supplier.

Is there a simple way to qualify prospects immediately without appearing rude or overly officious?
In my mind, this is part of doing the business. There is no way around it. It is standard practice for the buyers to get quotes from multiple vendors and choose the best one.

One possible solution is to provide a summarized quote initially without spending too much time and follow with detailed quote once you have found the query to have potential. Although there is a danger that the buyer will not even consider you if the quote they have received is not in the format they asked for or doesn't have sufficient details. Many companies provide a template the vendors are required to fill in when they issue RFP.

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