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Dondi Scumaci Blog

Are You Disqualifying Your Customers?

Once in a while you bump into a service practice so bad it’ll have you shaking your head in disbelief.

A (BIG) company I do (A LOT) of business with sent me a letter today with a compelling offer – a way for me to save money on the services I use with them. I called to inquire and here is my short list of BAD BEYOND BELIEF customer engagement practices:

  1. The “customer service” representative was more intent on me “proving” my customer status then on connecting with me.  With an almost endless list of “prove it” questions, we were off to a shaky start.
  2. I did not have my latest statement in hand because we’ve been encouraged to go paperless. This annoyed him. Apparently I was unprepared to be served. Shame on me!
  3. When he was finally satisfied that I am indeed a paying customer with a paperless statement, we moved on to the “because you are a valuable customer” letter in my hand. This is when he informed me I do not qualify for the offer I had received because…wait for it… I am already a customer using the services listed.

Mind blowingly BAD! 

I don’t like being disqualified as a customer. And the really crazy part of my story? Before receiving this letter, I liked my services and felt like I was getting a pretty good deal.

I won’t insult you by reversing the points above to outline the best practices for customer engagement. They’re in there and I know you’ll find them.

 

6 Responses to “Are You Disqualifying Your Customers?”

  1. Ted Lee Sadler Says:

    oh.my.word. No comments needed – if you can’t see it from this then… I… no comment needed! Thanks!

  2. Dondi Says:

    Ted, Perfect response: Oh. My. Word. LOL!

  3. Jean Says:

    Wait….so you had to prove you were already a customer……sends a letter to their “valuable customer” and then you can’t partake, because you are “a valuable customer.”

  4. Dondi Says:

    Hello Jean. Yes! Mind blowing, isn’t it. You truly have to step through it slowly to fully appreciate the insanity of it. At any rate, always good to see you my friend.

  5. Kumar Gauraw Says:

    It’s amazing how this whole phenomena has shaped up about qualifying to be a customer. First they follow up as long as it takes to get you to say YES and then, the moment you said that ‘YES’, the next probably statement you hear is, “Let’s see if you qualify”.

    How unfortunate way of doing business.

  6. Dondi Says:

    Indeed Kumar. This scenario can teach us so much. Two questions that can add a great deal of value to our customer engagements: 1) How can I make it easier for my customers to do business with me? 2) How can I become a greater resource to the people I serve? Thank you for your comments!

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