The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new. -Way of the Peaceful Warrior – Dan Millman (often misquoted to Socrates)
We got a top score from our customer. Great!
This customer is going to give us a 5-star review! Awesome.
We got another bad one. Bummer.
We are trending down. We failed.
We can look for trends. We can analyze the numbers and feedback. We can critique, evaluate, and spend every waking hour trying to justify why and where we are…but we shouldn’t.
Do we need a survey to know that one employee isn’t on the same mission? Are we so out of touch with our operation that our customers have to tell us where we were failing? Are we seeking to have satisfied customers? Satisfied is easily replaceable by the ones that do it exceptionally.
It’s similar to my prior blogs, ‘look at them‘ and ‘remember that time‘. Every moment we spend looking backward, we aren’t looking forward. Every time we react to a small thing, we are taking our eye off of the big thing.
There may be more important questions.
Are we attracting and serving the right customers? What if the marketing program brought the Nordstrom customers to the Dollar Store? Maybe that customer shouldn’t be our customer.
Are we setting unrealistic expectations? “This thing will change your life”. In reality it will only make it marginally better. In reality, we are just doing our job.
Are we fulfilling the realistic expectations? Did we do what we said we were going to do?
Are we doing the right thing? Are they buying because there is nothing better?
Is there a demand for this? Do they really want it?
Are we good at this? Just because we were good at _______, doesn’t mean we will be good at _______.
Should we be doing this at all? Maybe it just isn’t our thing.
Yes we may be able to recover that customer. We may be able to convert an unhappy customer into a raving fan. But will we be in the mode of phone/email/reply recovery when our next customer needs us?
If we only focus on the bad feedback, we may forget about the good ones.
Customer feedback is important but it should never be a surprise. Obsessing about scores means we are obsessing about the past. What if we obsessed about the future instead? Do the right things and our customers will return.
Have the courage to look forward. Have the courage to fix today and tomorrow.