You can line up DOMINOS in a beautiful pattern and spend hours doing it … but all you have to do to knock them all down is PUSH over the first one (the lead domino) and the rest will follow. The same is true about a business. You can spend years and years building up a great business with a super reputation and one employee can cause a customer to never do business with you again. One employee can PUSH a customer the wrong way and run them off … in other words … they knocked down one DOMINO. But, could that one upset customer cause other customers to follow them?
In today’s society of instant global communication, one upset customer can put the story out over the internet of your RIP-OFF … AWFUL SERVICE … UNFAIR TREATMENT … and seriously hurt your business. PUSHING the one DOMINO can sometimes cause a whole lot of DOMINOS to fall ... maybe all of them.
We found out today the appliance repairman who works for the company that has done ALL of our warranty work tried to pull a fast one on us; a $2,964.00 fast one. Before I spend that kind of money, I think a second opinion is in order. So, we got the name of a really talented repairman who had done work for our neighbor and had him diagnose the problem. He said it would only cost $74.96 to fix the problem. He had it fixed in less than one hour.
We had purchased ALL our appliances for our home from the first repairman’s company and they had done ALL the previous small repairs for warranty work … but out of warranty … BANG! … time to soak the stupid consumer who has no idea what is wrong. That repairman is right. I don’t know about appliances, but I do know how to dial a phone. I do know how to go online and get other opinions. I do have neighbors who may have had similar problems.
Now, what damage has been done by the first repairman? TRUST has been destroyed. CONFIDENCE in what the first repairman (and his company) says is now a thing of the past. Will I ever do business with them again? No! There are a lot of other companies who sell and service appliances. Will I tell my friends about what happened? You bet I will. Will they believe me? They sure will. More customers will be lost because of what happened to just one customer.
Every single day companies PUSH over dominos (customers) not realizing the potential damage that might be caused. I would suggest you start handling every customer like they are that Lead Domino who can possibly knock them all down. If you handle your customers with the care and honesty they deserve, then you won’t have to worry about other dominos falling (customers leaving).
Your customers aren’t obligated to do business with you. You need to assume your customers are always teetering, swaying, wavering … getting ready to fall over (go somewhere else) if you push them the wrong way … and on their way down they might just knock over some other dominos (customers) as well. Are there any DOMINO PUSHERS in your company? You better hope not.