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Saturday I stopped at what I thought was a farmer’s market. You know the cry now is, “Buy local.” I picked up a few vegetables for my gazpacho and took them to the counter. Like you, I was out having another customer experience.

“You can put them in a plastic bag, “I said.

“We don’t have any, “she said.

“Paper will do just fine,” I said.

“Don’t have it,” she said.

“Well a twisty on that bag will do.” I said.

“Don’t have them,” she said. Okay no bags, no “twisties” and not really a local market. I should have guessed the eggplant was $5.00!

Yesterday I went to the grocery store and couldn’t find my low salt tomato juice. I went to customer service and asked if they might get it for me, and she said, “I don’t know” and walked away. Now what would you have said? How about a big smile, some questions about “why” and then “Of course I’ll tell a manager.”” Don’t forget a tag online, “Give me your phone number, so I can call you when it gets in or let you know what happens.”

As a customer, I don’t care what you do with my request, I just care that you acknowledge me and my concerns. If you’re store is convenient, I’ll probably continue to shop at your store anyway. I can stop drinking the tomato juice, make my own or get it somewhere else. Just let me know I matter.

I don’t care if you throw out the customer’s request and call to tell them you’re never going to get the product. Just do something. Doesn’t anyone train on these things?

  1. “A smile and thank you for your inquiry or request.”
  2. “I’ll look into it for you.”
  3. “How come it’s important to you?”
  4. “We’re glad you shop here.”
  5. “Let me get the manager now and she what she/her says.
  6. “How often do you shop here?”
  7. “We don’t want our customers going anywhere else.”
  8. “Thanks for giving us a chance to find it for you.”

The customer experience is about making the customer feel valued and important. Acknowledging other humans is the nicest thing we can do in our society.

Lisbeth has been a coach and business consultant for over 20 years. To schedule a call with her or have her speak with your staff, reach her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com. http://blog.timesunion.com/success/author/lisbethcalandrino/.

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