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Serving Your Customers' Needs Like A Hand in Glove
by Craig Harrison
Published in the June, 2001
edition of
City N ews

As a quality glove fits our hand, so too should our service cloak your customers.

As we strengthen our relationships with customers over time, we go beyond providing each with identical high-end service. We strive to understand how to treat each client and each customer in the way they best want to be treated. We build a profile of our customers, come to understand the services and features they value, and tailor our deliverables to fit their needs. In these ways and more our customers feel valued and special, and will crave the attention we can provide them through custom service. I liken it to fitting our customers like a glove.

Outer Protection

Like a good glove protects one's hands, so too does American Express protect its customers. Whether using secure servers or Internet protocols that conceal the identity of their customers, their users feel safe and valued by this carrier. We should take care to protect our customers: from fraud, from mass marketing abuse as a result of being on our mailing lists, and in other ways. With identity theft on the rise, let's let our customers know of our efforts to protect their accounts and the privacy of their buying habits.


Inner Comfort

Another feature of a good glove is the comfort it provides. Is it easy to put on and take off? Psychologically, customers want shopping and buying systems that are easy or even fun to use. They don't want to feel they must conform to a system for processing sales transactions that appeals to some lowest common denominator. They appreciate a system that makes buying easy, that doesn't require long or laborious processes for purchasing goods or services. Is the shopping process easy? Is it comfortable? Do you know? Ask your customers. Long lines, burdensome rules and regulations, and slow processes are turn-offs. We can turn our customers on by creating comfort for them throughout our relationship with them. By recording their preferences we can better customize our services and enhance their buying experience. We see this in the hospitality field; The Wyndham Hotels and Resorts' ByRequest program actively seeks customer input on preferences, from types of pillows and beds to preferred reading materials and mini-bar items. Let's face it, we love a glove that's well broken in and fits us masterfully. That's what customization feels like to our customers.


Style Points

Let's face it, our customers want more than the basics. The best gloves combine form and function. Style counts here so let's review the manner in which we provide the service. Are our customers aware that what we're doing is a form of customer service? If not, we must find ways to let them know that's what we're doing for them.  After all, it's only fitting.

© Copyright 2001 Craig Harrison. All Rights Reserved.

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