5 Ways to Make Your Customers Mad

 In Customer Service

In a piece for Inc.com, Steve Tobak talks about five sure fire ways to p*ss off your customers. While these five ways may not be specific to bars and restaurants, they’re certainly five things that bar and restaurant owners can learn to avoid!

Here’s what Tobak has to say about the five ways to p*ss off your customers:

1. Fail to deliver. With all the great logistics services available from the likes of UPS and FedEx, there’s simply no excuse for failing to deliver product to a customer as promised. And yet, it happens all the time. Either the tracking information is wrong, they deliver the wrong product, they show up on the wrong day, or they don’t show up at all.

2. Waste your customer’s precious time — and test their patience. How much time do you spend on the phone or online just trying to figure out what’s gone wrong and get it taken care of? And you never seem to get a straight answer until you’ve asked to speak with whoever’s in charge or threatened to take your business elsewhere.

3. Create problems out of thin air. Let’s face it. Not all customers are fun to deal with. And since I have the attention span and patience of a two year-old, I could never deal with the general public. Still, you’d think companies could do better than having customer service people who are like crazed lunatics that went off their meds.

4. Ignore feedback (or make it hard to give it). In the age of Twitter, Facebook, and Yelp, you’d think companies would clue in to the fact that, if they don’t take feedback to heart or make it easy for customers to get in touch with them, they’re going to get eviscerated in a very public way, which is never a good thing. And yet, some companies make it nearly impossible for you to contact them directly.

5. Hamstring employees. The most important thing I learned in quality training back in the 80s was that 90 percent of all problems are management problems. If anything, the real number’s actually higher. So most of the problem situations we attribute to individuals on the front line are actually caused by bad management and flawed processes. Go figure.

Read the rest of the article to hear about Tobak’s experience with a wine delivery gone wrong (that also managed to touch four of the five ways in one fell swoop).

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