The Customer Bottom Line

Everything considered, what is the bottom line principle of a real customer focus?

THE CUSTOMER ALWAYS HAS TO COME FIRST NO MATTER WHAT. THEY ARE WHAT DRIVES THE ENTIRE BUSINESS FROM THE GROUND UP. CUSTOMERS HAVE TO BE TREATED WITH THE UPMOST RESPECT AND CATERED TO AT ALL TIMES. SATISFIED CUSTOMERS EQUAL PROFIT NOW AND IN THE FUTURE IN MY OPINION AND THATS THE BOTTOM LINE.

Hi Michael! Welcome to the discussion forums and thanks for your comments. It's true, many organizations don't realize that it is very expensive to lose just one customer when all is considered. And sometimes it's just the extra small enhancements that make a difference - most businesses have customer service as a core principle, but don't take it to the support and enhancement levels.

Let me ask, if I may, how do you handle, particularly in the construct of working with students from your department's perspective, a situation where you cannot honor a request?

Thanks,
Jay Hollowell
ML107 Facilitator

I would say understand who your customer is and find out what you need to do to satisfy their needs. And .... don't be afraid to fire a customer when it is appropriate.

The bottom line principle would be to develop lasting relationships with ideal customers, based on providing them with their ideal service experience.

With this in mind, the company will assure a profitable future through the three R's of retention, related sales, and referrals.

Keep them happy and they will come back for more.

Hi Howard! Thanks for your comment. Would you allow me to suggest one minor edit to your true statement that might have even a greater effect?

Keep them "happier" and they will come back for more - ah, the wonderful world of competition.

Jay Hollowell
ML107 Facilitator

I believe bottom line principles for real customer focus includes excellent personal interaction which includes the strong ability to listen, laugh, and educate.

Its not always about giving into customers. Its about educating them on expectations, quality, professionalism, and brand.

Although there are times to "give away today for a greater return tomorrow", creating a focus on customers and their loyalty to the company does have merit for retention but don't be so quick to give the store away.

In my school, students always feel that they are the customer and they can do what they want. Proactively we educate them on professionalism and how they can "earn" a diploma and not "pay" for a diploma which has worked wonderfully.

I do agree with keeping them happy as long as it's happy in the sense of customer satisfaction due to excellent relationship building and loyalty, not happy to quiet the "sweaky wheel" shopper. I have noticed that there is more of the "sweaky wheel" syndrome going around in efforts to get something for free. Society in general may have taken a step down to these types of acts.

Customer-Focused Programs: Principles of Success Principle 1: The mandate must come from the top but the vision must be shared by all. Principle 2: Focus on those customers who will make the biggest difference to your bottom line. Principle 3: Business and financial impact of the process must be demonstrated. Principle 4: Customer impact must be measured using a frame- work that is valid and replicable. Principle 5: Programs must be developed to help the organization use the knowledge created. Principle 6: Employees are critical to the success of any customer service initiative.

Jay,
RT-104 said it best,"Attention equals Retention".
We as a corporation need to have the focus that everyone from the part time employee to the Campus President has an obligation and commitment to giving the students the attention they need to be successful. When the student feels they are supported, coached and encouraged, retention and customer satisfaction is the natural by-product.
Tim Pope

The customer is the most important asset of the company. there is no business without customers

Keeping a customer happy is challenging. I agree with the one mention of giving the customer attention. I find that many times a customer simply wants to feel that they are being tended to and only they are the focus for the moment that they are being serviced.

Hi Felicia,

It is a challenge - and there is such a big difference between customer service and "customer first service!"

Jay
ML139 Facilitator

To satisfy the customer's needs for high quality
and customer satisfaction. To be sure that they are always satisfied with the service they are receiving and to resolve any complaints or problems that they may have.

Jeannette

Hello Jay,
I woud say result. Remember the customer does not want to pay for the services received; they are more interested in the result that will follow. This is why, employers should focus on how their services will provide appropariate results in order to become and remain financially stable.

Hello Jay,
I could not agree more with the word "happier" which is a key to remain competitive.

Emmanuel

I could not agree more with your statement, Carlos. This is why it is important to never stop focusing on their needs.

Emmanuel

I do not believe customers should be catered to on every aspect. Certainly they should be treated with respect and all the help you can give them, but I think when you start trying to cater to every whim you will find that while "the squeaky wheel gets the grease" you can have offended other students at a much greater cost to your school while trying to placate one.

I agree, You want to provide your customers with the best quality service to the business to keep their confidence in you as a person. Never mislead a customer on things that you are unfamiliar with. Make sure when your trying to sale,or trying to get them to come back. Always have a good personality, loyalty, and most of all confidence within you on what you are trying to do to keep them coming. the key is having confidence in yourself and the customer will have confidence in you and your work.