A football team can execute a well orchestrated drive down the field toward the goal line.
A combination of plays, that result in perfect passes, and effective runs, can bring them to the five yard line. The goal is just fifteen feet away.
Yet, even so, the team somehow can’t seem to move the ball into the end zone.
They don’t anticipate the obstacles that stand in their way, and as a result, they don’t execute the final plays properly. So, they fall short of scoring six points and the opportunity of a possible extra point. If this is a critical part of the game, they could end up losing the game because of their bungled efforts.
The game of business is a lot like the game of football. It always leaves me wondering when I walk into a business, how often the final moments of contact with the customer are left to chance. Although it could be a beautifully decorated store or business with the most expensive looking merchandise, the poorest trained cashier could be ringing up the sale. As a result, the cashier drops the ball, and quite possibly drives the customer away from ever coming back again.
When it comes to analyzing the service your customer receives, a good way to approach the entire cycle of service is to do it in reverse. In other words trace the sale backwards. What does your customer see, hear and experience starting with the cashier. Here are some questions to use in your “reverse service” inventory:
• Is the cashier pleasant and courteous?
• Is he or she prepared to handle an unhappy customer and turn the situation around?
• Is the checkout aisle clean and orderly?
• Are the displays in front of the cashier aisle neat and attractive?
• Are the clerks in the aisle well trained and helpful?
By handling the details of the customer service experience in reverse, you can insure that your company will be better prepared, succeed in properly servicing and scoring with the customer, and winning the sale.
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