Doctors see dozens of patients a day. A quick-lube store may service hundreds of cars on a Tuesday. The local discount department store probably runs thousands through its checkouts on a busy Saturday morning. And a local manufacturer may churn out tens of thousands of units over the course of three shifts.
One more patient. One more car. One more customer. One more widget. Just “one more” in a long line of somethings, day after day after day.
A patient may see a doctor twice a year, if that. Their car’s oil? Every three months probably stretches into four, five, six…and has it been 10,000 miles already? They avoid the big chain discount store and try only to run in for the necessities once a month. And a new TV? When the old one still works?
The point is, service and product providers and their customers have a vastly different view of things. That doctor may perform colonoscopies all day, but for the average person, they’re going to get just one all year. And you can bet that one colonoscopy is going to leave an impression. The doc who provides the least uncomfortable experience possible 95 percent of the time may think he or she is doing well—but what about the 5 percent who are miserable? The 10 percent whose new computers don’t work? The eight percent who have a bad customer service experience?
Your customers’ interactions with your company are likely going to be very limited, so it’s important to make every one count. Yes, you may install office networks all year, but this is the one and only office network this particular customer is going to purchase for a long time. It’s not routine to them. It’s not an ordinary, run-of-the-mill experience. It’s your company’s one and possibly only chance to make a good impression. That’s why 95 percent satisfaction may not be good enough.
Customers will stick with the providers they trust—the ones that always come through, are never late, always find the part, always send the product on time. That bond is magic until they become “just one more” customer in your company’s day.
The next time someone tells you to rest easy, that they “do this all the time,” remember how it makes you feel. Remember that your customers feel the same way. It’s not important that they know that you do something all the time. What’s most important to convey to your customer is that you’re doing their job right now, and that it’s not “just one more.” It’s the most important one in the world.