Whether you work in the service sector, retail or even government, every organization has the opportunity to make their clients’ lives either easier or harder. While some companies prioritize keeping their customers happy and loyal, other companies believe demand for their product or service to be inelastic, and don’t feel the need to work for customer loyalty. But the truth is we live in a quickly changing world where anything is possible and even products and services viewed as irreplaceable today, can be replaced or substituted tomorrow. Consider the growing calls to eliminate the United States Postal Service. Certainly technologies like email and other substitutes have played a part in that decline. Just because you think your company is booming today, doesn’t mean you’re safe tomorrow. You shouldn’t treat your customers as though they are dispensable. Maintaining positive customer relations and enhancing customer loyalty will be key to your company’s survival.
In two recent MSN headlining stories, The Fiscal Times documents the 19 Companies Americans Love Dealing with the Most and the 18 Companies Americans Hate Dealing with the Most. According to the author of the articles; Marine Cole, “Publix was the highest-rated supermarket chain and the highest rated company – improving its score over last year. The fast food industry and retailers also (surprisingly) scored high in the rankings, with Chick-fil-A, Papa John’s, Amazon.com and PetSmart all among the top 10 companies for best customer experience.” The three lowest ranked companies were Coventry Health Care, Fox Rent a Car, and Comcast. Among the other 18 lowest ranked companies there seems to be a recurring trend with the health insurance industry, the rental car industry, and TV and internet service industry.
How were the scores determined? The Temkin ratings are based on consumer feedback in three main areas:
Success: Was the consumer successful in completing the task he or she initially intended to achieve?
Effort: How easy was it to interact with the company?
Emotion: How did the consumer feel about this interaction?
Article author Marine Cole points out an interesting trend, “The particularity of these companies is that consumers typically deal face-to-face with them whether at the supermarket or at their favorite fast food restaurant. In contrast, the companies Americans hate dealing with the most are companies that consumers have to interact with on the phone such as health insurance companies or cable providers.”
Many times the companies whose customers consistently report having positive experiences are the companies whose employees have heightened interpersonal skills. The companies that survive are also those who are agile, resilient and versatile. Versatility is the greatest predictor of success, and a trademark characteristic of those who have enhanced Versatility is that these people are constantly looking for ways to improve. A company is only as good as its employees so having employees who are constantly looking for ways to improve will lead to an innovative company.
To see how your industry’s Versatility stacks up check out our SOCIAL STYLE & Versatility infographics.
To learn more about Versatility click here. Featured in the Customer Communicator, TRACOM’s Dr. Natalie Wolfson discusses the impact emotion awareness and perception have on customer service reps. To learn more about how EQ affects Customer Service click here.