“There is only One Boss – The Customer. And that boss can fire everybody in the company from The chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.” These were the words of the Walmart’s Founder ( Sam Walton) years back. Of course, he understood the bloated power of Customer to any Business and its survival. If you see your customers in this perspective, then you have the first success key to any Business. No Business can survive without a good Customer base. Loyal Customers, who can be a mouth piece for the company. Customers who could defend your product anywhere there is a need for such.
A consumer will qualify as a Customer after the first patronage, the experience and how they are treated determines if there will be repeat purchase or not. If the first experience is positive then they become your Customer. And if it continues consistently, they become your referral. To achieve this, you either chose to see the customer as your Boss or a King. Evidently the way your Customer is treated is subject to how you see them.
Hence, this is why a school of thought hold on to the “CUSTOMER IS THE KING”CONCEPT while another Says Customer is THEBOSSas propounded by Sam Walton. The proponents of the former Say “Customer is always right.”It was a motto or slogan which exhorts service staff to give a high priority to Customer satisfaction. It was popularized by pioneering and successful retailers such as Harry Gordon Selfridge, John Wanamaker and Mashall Field. It was originally coined by Harry Gordon Selfridge, the founder of Selfridge’s department store in London in 1909, and its typically used by Business to : convince customers that they will get good service at this company and convince employees to give customer good service.
Beyond the rhetoric, Customer satisfaction goes beyond telling them that they are your King or Boss. You need to work the Talk. You need to show them how important they are to your business by going extra mile to satisfy their needs and giving them optimum value for their money. Your customers do not have to ask you for what they need. Do not allow them to have any reason to complain about your product or your service. You should be on top of your game by making sure you anticipate for all their needs and ensure these needs are Catered for satisfactorily.
How Should I Really Treat My Customer?
A school of thought says Customer is a king while another says Customer is a Boss but the two concepts are working towards ensuring that Customers are delighted when they patronize our business. You may chose to treat your Customer as a king if your objective is to limit such good treatment only to the period when you engage in personal selling with the Customer. You only respect Kings most often when you have physical encounter with them. You will listen to their complaints and try all you can in solving their problems. You will never want to hurt their feelings so that you can gain their trust. After all, they are your customers and you don’t want to lose them.
They will enjoy the concept of “The Customer isalways right”because you see them as kings during your business encounter with them. If they ask question, you go extra mile explaining to them – this may include those questions related to your products or your company or even question outside your Business Concern. You do all these to please your Customer because you see them as King and you want to treat them as such. Subjectively, this may not continue after the Sales are closed. You are not likely to continue all these good treatment and good attitude that you have shown because in a real sense of it you only show respect to a king you see physically. You hardly think of your king in your private endeavor. When they are with you they are well respected and when they are gone you maintain the status-quo. This is exactly how you treat your customers when they are seen as kings. You attend to all their problems when they are with you. You tend to treat them with kindness because you are expecting to win them over. When they are gone what next?
On the contrary, there are some differences in the approach when you see your Customer as your Boss as compared with been seen as a King. This covers all the efforts involved in the first concept but also involve so many other efforts. For instance, there should be a high level of transparency on the part of the company towards the Customer. In just the same way the boss shares his vision and objectives with the employee we need to do the same to our Customers. They need to be carried along in all our Marketing Strategies even if there is any innovative plan on the way. We should listen to our customers and ensure we understand how they are changing. What are they sensitive to and what more can we do to delight them. This could be achieved through Customer feedback which is a free gift for us to enjoy.
More so, We should be more proactive in responding to questions. Our customer support should be up and doing. When Customer makes an enquiry, make it snappy while responding. When they raise an objection about your Company, product, service or your staff, See it as an opportunity for you to learn how they can be better served. When they ask for help, see it as an opportunity for you to learn on the job. Make it a cardinal point of duty to understand your Customers as this goes a long way for the success of your Business. They ultimately determine whether you will remain in business or not. You and your staff should not make mistake of seeing the Company as a place of job security when in actual sense the ability to make customers keep coming by gaining their loyalty is the real Job security for all.
Irrespective of the concept you choose, whether you want to treat your customer like a king or like your Boss the most important objective you want to achieve is customer retention. You want to ensure a repeat purchase for every transaction you have with them. Also, continuity of your Business is paramount and cannot be traded away. It is very important that you try your best to satisfy your Customer with all the resources at your disposal. Do not forget that Customer rarely needs you, he has several alternatives and in a single snap he can switch and forget you forever. Know for a fact that it is more efficient to keep or retain a customer than gaining new One.
Article By: Kenny S