While I still have a keen interest in my real estate investment business, I have begun to create an internet-based service business. I can’t say too much about it yet, but I’m hoping to have it into beta testing in September.
What made me announce it today?
Seth Godin had a blog post today about “Training Your Customers” which resonated with a portion of the philosophy that I will be using for the new business.
My overall premise for the business is that the state of customer service is generally dismal in the United States. (I can’t speak definitively about other countries, but I suspect that many are in a similar boat.) Given this very low “bar” for customer service, it makes sense that there could be a HUGE competitive advantage to a company that is able to provide superior customer service on a consistent basis. Not that it will be easy… but there is certainly a window of opportunity.
How does that relate to “training customers”?
Customer service is essentially a matter of expectations and the concept of “training customers” can be a very useful tool for setting and maintaining those expectations. It is also important for a business to set standards both for workers AND customers. If someone is going to be a customer of ours (and receive our utmost effort and service) we will demand a civilized interaction and no abuse of the workers will be allowed. Other companies may train their customers to expect cheap prices (as a trade-off for incredibly poor customer service) but we will strive for competitive prices … and incredibly good customer service.
As Seth Godin calls it, we will “train” our customers … so that we can provide them with the best customer service in the world. Customer Service is not about performing miracles… it is about setting, meeting and then exceeding expectations along parameters that are important to the customer.
Would like to work for a company like this?
Well, you won’t be able to … because all the work will be done by contractors who will be in business for themselves. On the other hand, if you want to go into business for yourself (and gain the benefits that come with business ownership) then you should stay tuned to this blog for more information.
This work won’t be “easy” since for many people, providing top customer service is an unnatural act. On the other hand, we will provide training and, if you are motivated to succeed, we will help you develop your customer service skills as well as your business management skills.
It is going to be an exciting 2010 and I’m looking forward to a fun ride !
d.Mark “Dave” Wheeler