A good friend of mine, Suzanne Winfield of Red Rock Leadership recently tweeted: “Doing it right one time is not enough. You have to do it right consistently.” That brought to mind a recent experience that serves as a perfect example for that phrase.
I recently needed to get a small amount of embroidered Polo’s and T-shirts printed. I found a franchise that has two stores locally. When I called the phone was answered immediately, all of my questions were answered to my satisfaction and I was going to go to the store to pick out the shirts. When he was giving me directions it turned out that I had called the store that was all the way across town when I meant to dial the one that is right around the corner from my office.
I apologized for the mistake and he said, “No problem, if they aren’t able to take care of you the way that we will feel free to call us back.” I called the other store. They put me on hold for a few minutes and then said they would need to call me back in 15 minutes. They took my number and I waited. Two hours later I decided to call the other store again because their service seemed superior and I was willing to drive the extra distance to get the ball rolling. I was going to do a blog post on it to demonstrate an example of how great customer service before the sale will get you more business. I’m glad I waited.
I went in that afternoon (Monday) and picked out my shirts. They said it would be two days to get the shirts and two days to finish them. That would have been Friday. I called on Saturday and they said they were sorry, a little backed up, and would have everything ready for my inspection/approval in “a couple of days”. I waited until the next Thursday. I called late morning and left a message. No return phone call. I called at the close of business, and got the right person on the phone who told me that my timing was really bad because they were so busy with school business this time of year. Really? My timing is bad??
Then they said they had farmed the work out because they were so busy and implied that it was someone else’s fault. They said they would send me the proofs last Friday (a week after the job should have been done). It’s now Wednesday. I called. They apologized, reminded me that my timing was bad and sent over incomplete proofs. I’ll update this when I get the shirts if there a reason, but I think you get the picture.
They started off on the right foot but as soon as they had my money it went downhill. As Suzanne said, “Doing it right one time is not enough. You have to do it right consistently.”
by Matt Fortenbery
CEO Total Printing Solution
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