The keys to great customer caring

My husband, Dave, and I were on a mission to find golf shirts in mid-August. We shopped the usual big-box stores and then made a side trip to the local Land’s End, where we found just what we needed. While waiting our turn to check out, I spotted a quote by Land’s End founder Gary Comer on the wall behind the registers that read, “Take care of the customer, take care of the employee, and the rest will take care of itself.” The company’s reputation for excellent service starts with that message.

Back in the 1900s, three pioneering retailers, Marshall Field, John Wanamaker, and Harry Gordon Selfridge, trained their employees with the mantra, “Right or wrong, the customer is always right.” These businessmen were all about making their customers feel valued and appreciated. Their mantra summed up the importance and necessity of placing the customer’s happiness above everything.

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Customer service in a digital world

An ancient Chinese saying tells us that “To open a business is very easy; to keep it open is very difficult.” In today’s business climate, customers have many options for where and how to buy what they want and need. If a brick-and-mortar company doesn’t make it easy to buy and receive what someone is looking for, those individuals, without leaving their desks or their easy chairs, can get pretty much anything they want by the touch of a keyboard.

While online order deliveries are getting faster, buying online doesn’t guarantee that the products will be as good as what the products look like on a monitor. Depending on the vendor, the return policies and/or customer service may not be the greatest either, so there can be downsides to buying certain products this way. In fact, sometimes the person you’re dealing with when trying to return or exchange a product, either on the phone or via email, knows absolutely nothing about the product itself. Sometimes he or she doesn’t even speak the language well enough to be understood.

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