The Locked Double Door - Everything is Customer Service

Category: Customer Service
Posted: 02-06-2011 01:11 AM
Views: 1021
Synopsis:

Recently, I went to my favorite ice cream shop and nearly pulled my arm out of my socket trying to open a locked door. The strange thing was that the store wasn't closed. For some reason, the double glass doors were only open on one side. Earlier in the day, I had gone to a local hardware store. (Yes, I know what you are thinking. Believe it or not there is still an independent local hardware store open in my city.) The hardware store also had this strange one door open, one door shut issue. Just like the ice cream shop, I nearly pulled my arm out of the socket on the locked door. These two establishments started me thinking. I realized that half of the stores I went to had a locked door when they were open. I also realized, as I looked back on it, that every single time I grabbed one of these locked doors I twinge of anger shot through my body and I entered the store annoyed.

Recently, I went to my favorite ice cream shop and nearly pulled my arm out of my socket trying to open a locked door. The strange thing was that the store wasn't closed. For some reason, the double glass doors were only open on one side. Earlier in the day, I had gone to a local hardware store. (Yes, I know what you are thinking. Believe it or not there is still an independent local hardware store open in my city.) The hardware store also had this strange one door open, one door shut issue. Just like the ice cream shop, I nearly pulled my arm out of the socket on the locked door. These two establishments started me thinking. I realized that half of the stores I went to had a locked door when they were open. I also realized, as I looked back on it, that every single time I grabbed one of these locked doors I twinge of anger shot through my body and I entered the store annoyed.

I decided to give businesses the benefit of the doubt. There must be a compelling reason to leave the door locked. After all, who wants in pain, annoyed or even angry customers walking into their store? I jumped onto Google and looked it up and the reasons were wide and varied. Some articles talked about the stack effect - which talked about open double doors sending massive amounts of air through large, tall buildings slamming doors violently through out the facility. But the stores I was going to were smaller establishments, so I looked further. The reasons talked about the doors blowing open, forgetfulness, conserving energy and security. In my opinion, none of these reasons were compelling enough to anger the customer. In my research I did find something else, too - thousands of comments by angry customers who talked about never going back to a store that locked one of the double doors.

For every customer that complains there are 10 others who think the same thing and don't say anything. Essentially there are millions of customers out there annoyed about the same thing. This brings up my greater point. Why do anything to annoy the customer in the first place? One of the comments I saw in my research was from a convenience store manager who said that they kept one of the doors locked because the doors were one of the great annoyances of the job. He complained about how they let air conditioning out and that they blew open when it was windy. My response to him is - who cares! Believe it or not, customers do not care about your annoyances; they care about their annoyances.

The customer is your number one priority. If one of your actions will anger, annoy, embarrass or inconvenience the customer and there isn't a compelling, unavoidable reason - don't do it!

Charlie Bentson King is a writer and producer of customer service training videos for TrainingABC. TrainingABC is a distributor of customer service videos such as Give em the Pickle

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