Why how you see your customers matters

What’s one of your biggest pet peeves as it relates to businesses you interact with?

One of my biggest annoyances with businesses is when I go to them repeatedly, see the same people working there every time, and its as if we’re complete strangers.

Now my expectation isn’t to be best buds with every person I encounter in every business.  That’s not it at all.  It’s just a matter of being acknowledged.  Its a matter of knowing that the people in the business working there day after day see me.  They see me, the customer, Sonia, rather than just some another transaction in their day.

So when I do encounter those businesses where there is a sense of familiarity with the people who are a part of that business, I find that I look forward to going back.  And even when there may be another option that could be better for me or intrigues me, I’m a bit more reluctant to give it a try because I’m unsure if it will come with a person who makes me feel welcomed, seen, and valued, or someone whose indifference toward me as a person will make my experience with that business forgettable.

Do you see your customers?

Now I know that people who are doing their jobs may interact with tons and tons of people over the course of a day.  It may be hard for them to engage with each and every customer.  But the reality is it doesn’t matter.  

For you to create an experience for your customers that is memorable, or better yet delightful, transactional cannot be a part of the equation.  So the businesses that find a way to connect with their customers on some level (at the very least put smiles on those customers’ faces) are the ones that are planting the seeds for creating loyal customers that comes back to you again and again over time.

Here are just a few of the businesses who’ve been able to do just that with me, because they saw me:  awesome, awesome, and more awesome!

What does this have to do with your business?

People, such as your customers, like to do business with people that they know and trust.  And when people know and trust you, its often because of some sort of an emotional connection they have with you.  

Customers develop emotional connections with businesses as a result of their people, products, or processes.  It’s great if the customer loves all three.  However, if the people aspect of your business doesn’t serve to foster a loyalty inducing relationship with your customers, then your products and processes will have to work all the harder to get the job done.

Check out chapter nine of Delight Inside for more information on building the right team for your business.  Included in the chapter you’ll find details on:

  • Getting and keeping the right (happy) people
  • Training and development:  Making good people even better

About the Author

Sonia Thompson is the founder and Chief Change Agent at TRY Business. Stay in touch with Sonia on Twitter and Google+.
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