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The Customer is Always Right

a photo of a restaurant server with a smile on his face, delivering excellent customer service

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What does “the customer is always right” mean?

In every aspect of business, there is some form of customer service. Whether it be good or bad, it will ultimately define how successful a business is. We have all heard the phrase “the customer is always right.” As much as that statement is used, I’m not sure we all know the meaning.

When an owner or a manager uses this statement, they are trying to express to their employees that when a customer is upset or frustrated they should be treated as if their issue is valid. After all, without the customer there is no business. At the end of the day, the customers have become our bosses in a way. That is not to say one customer is our boss, but the collective group of customers we serve are our boss. When one is mad, they could very easily cause a domino effect, which will cause us to lose or upset others. How we handle the individual really forges the perception that other customers and future customers will form about our company.

Why is the customer always right?

In the business world, and especially in today’s business world, perception is reality. A tweet or blog can be viewed by thousands in a matter of seconds. Bad reviews chip away at your company’s reputation and morale; good reviews are essential to survival. If a comment is negative toward your business, it doesn’t matter if it portrays the situation correctly. It’s out there for the world to see. Generally speaking, a customer will tell more people about a bad experience than a good one. That is why it is so important to handle those experiences with care. To provide improved customer service, we must push pride aside and adopt humility and compassion. It is not good enough just to help the customer; do it with a smile and an energy that wows them.

How to use this motto to gain customer loyalty

We are all going to fall short in one area or another. If we can make up for that shortcoming with customer service that goes far beyond what one would normally expect from our competitors, then we may just gain a lifetime customer. Now, there are many ways to do this, and people far more intelligent than me have come up with steps or a process that work great. At the end of the day though, it is very simple; just treat the customer how you want to be treated. The golden rule applies in service as much as any other aspect in life. We have all been the customer who feels they have been wronged. In these instances, whether right or wrong, we want to feel compassion and understanding from the person who is helping us.

This practice can’t be measured by any single number, but at the end of the day, we can feel pride in providing a great customer experience that is leaps and bounds above our competition. By doing this, the numbers will take care of themselves. There’s wisdom to the motto that the customer is always right.

Original post written by Kyle Carroll, former TimeForge Sales Rep.

Have you ever been asked the “Do you believe the customer is always right?” interview question? We have! Check out our new post, in which the TimeForge team provides their own answers.

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