“Statistics suggest that when customers complain,
business owners and managers ought to get excited
about it. The complaining customer represents a
huge opportunity for more business.”
— Zig Ziglar
It wasn’t something that I learned quickly, but slowly I began to look upon complaining customers as an opportunity. In sales training, I would state that until a customer complains or has a problem, they really don’t know how you as a person or as a company will perform. If the complaint or problem is solved smoothly and efficiently, the customer then has the opportunity to not only know for certain how you or your company performs, thereby gaining in trust, but they also have the opportunity to become an advocate and help you grow your business.
It’s not like we want complaints, but I think we need them. I know this, for sure and for certain (always loved that phrase. . .), that I would much rather have a complaint than a customer feeling poor about our company or performance and then not saying anything at all to us. The likelihood of that person saying poor things to a lot of other people is strong. I prefer to hear it directly–even in my face, so to speak.
This is not a theory. It has proven itself consistently over time and in operation of several businesses including my own. Since this has been true, I find myself looking forward to complaints–at least from that perspective.
This has also been proven: in an extremely high percentage of those that complain, regardless of the size of the fault, they then become advocates and do more business and send more business. Seriously true! From that perspective, I LOVE COMPLAINTS AND PROBLEMS!
Now, the key is how the problem or complaint is received and how smoothly it is retired. There is no room for making excuses, blaming others and so on. We must accept it head-on by accepting responsibility for taking charge of the solution and care of the complainer at the same time. It’s really no more than the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. If we had a problem or complaint, we would want prompt attention to solution, and we would detest blame and excuses, don’t you think?
I suppose we could say, success is dealing with problems–effectively.
“Problem Headquarters! We Got Some Love For Ya!”
Spread Some Joy Today–Get excited about opportunities to help people and solve problems for them. There is a certain joy in that.