It seems that I often end up talk about customer service in local businesses, but it is a vital part of standing strong as part of a sustainable local community.
Time after time I am disappointed by the level of customer service in local businesses, especially those who promise great service. It led me to think the other day, if you are still doing customer service like you would have done in the 1950′s then you are doing it better than most.
Think back (or imagine, for those of us who aren’t old enough to think back – which would be most of us…) to the days when the staff to customer ratio was much higher. To when the tell behind the counter knew you by name, and often by order. Think back to a time when you had someones full attention, you didn’t have to fight other customers, the phone, the computer and countless other sources of distraction.
Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that times have changed and it is not possible to run a store just as it would have been back then, but there are some key aspects that can be taken away.
Last week I was standing by the counter, waiting to be served (I won’t say where…). The phone began to ring.
The team member came running to answer the phone without a second thought to me and the fact that I was waiting as well, nor was I even acknowledge with eye contact or a smile whilst they were on the phone.
Once they had finished they turned to me and asked if the could help, but it perfectly displays my point…
Real customers come first. The ones who took the time to walk in your front door and stand in front of your counter with a wallet in their hand deserve your full attention.
Well, that is enough of my little rant for now. Let’s hope that I can bring you happier news in the future.
P.S – I’m still sticking to my new years resolution to support local business and shop local for the year. It has led me to some interesting discoveries…