Apology Accepted, Customer Retained

Apology AcceptedWe all make mistakes.  We’re human.  And, lest any of you say that computers are infallible, let me refer you to the millions of tech support folks around the world that make a living cleaning up automated mistakes!  Lucky for us, most of our mistakes are fairly small and can be either overlooked or easily righted.

However, what do you do when things go really wrong?  As in, ‘making the six PM news’ bad.

Whether it is a massive outage for your company or stranding passengers at airports, each and every company has, or will, suffer through one of those snafu’s.  How you handle it determined whether you keep your Customers, or kiss your company good bye.

Myra Golden details out five steps that separate these two types of companies, and I would like to share just three of them here.  She is basing her article on the 2007 Jet Blue incident, where thousands of people were stranded in New York for days, however, I feel that these apply to most situations as well.

Step 1 – Apologize.  Yes, say that you are sorry. Make it sincere, we can tell when they are ‘just words’.

Step 2 – Explain what happened.  Your Customers want to know what happened, and the more you share, the more that they feel like they are part of the solution.

Step 3 – Make it right.  Sometimes, this means that you dig deep into your pockets and spend more than what that Customer paid you for the product.  Whatever it takes to straighten out this situation, it will cost less than what it takes to get a new Customer.

Remember, the Customer paid you for something and if you want them to return, you have to make it right!

Thanks for reading, I hope this helps you at some point,

Brandon

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