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Excerpt From "Phenomenal Customer Service" by Shep Hyken

Posted January 14 2014

We are delighted to share with you this transcribed excerpt from Phenomenal Customer Service by Shep Hyken. This high energy seminar will help you learn how to amaze your clients, make a great first impression, and be a step above the rest when it comes to customer service.

How many of you believe it’s important to satisfy your customers? Raise your hands. Good.  Everybody’s hand goes up. 

Now let me tell you the reality of the situation: Several years ago, two professors at Vanderbilt University, Anthony J Zahorik, and Roland T Rust, did a study, and what they found was, in certain businesses, not necessarily what all of us do, but in many frontline retail-oriented businesses like a restaurant or a hotel, they say up to 40% of your satisfied customers will not come back even though they’re satisfied. Now that blew my mind. How could that be? I mean,  they’re satisfied. Why wouldn’t they want to come back? Bain & Company out of Boston said that number is too low. As a matter of fact, in some businesses, it can be as high as 80%. 80% of satisfied customers won’t come back, even though they’re satisfied. Wow! Now, why is that?  Well, it’s simple. Because they’re just satisfied. In other words, it was all right, it was OK, nothing special. To give you an example, Carol, right? It says so on your name badge. Carol, my name is Shep, nice to meet you, I’m going to ask you a question. This is about as hard as it’s going to get. You’re walking into a restaurant, I’m walking out of the restaurant, you say “Shep, how’s the food?”. I say “It’s OK, it’s all right”. In other words, it’s satisfactory if you will. Are you going to be excited to spend your hard-earned money in this restaurant? “Actually no”. Actually no, that is correct, the answer. Thanks for playing the game. Carol said it right.  No. Why? Because it’s just OK. If it was great, sure, she’d be happy to, but now she’s going to think twice. She’s gotten this opinion. Yeah, it was OK. It wasn’t bad. It wasn’t great. Let me bring this to a personal level that I think many of us can relate to, who are married especially. 

I’m going to talk about my wife, because she’s not in the room to defend herself. This is what happened on our very first date. I was very, very lucky to be able to go out with this beautiful girl, and I went over and I picked her up, and I took her out for a nice dinner. At the end of the evening, I dropped her off at the doorstep, gave her a quick peck on the cheek goodnight, and she walked in and her roommate asked her “How was your date with Shep?”. She could have said “It was OK, it was all right, it was satisfactory if you will”. What are the chances of me having another date with this girl the following Saturday night? I mean, she’s a very popular girl, and the date was just OK. I could see asking her out “Hey, I had a good time, I hope you had a good time too. Would you like to go out next Saturday night?”. And she could say something like “Why don’t you give me a call next Saturday, about five o’clock in the afternoon, and I’ll let you know if I’m free”. Now, the women are all smiling, and some are laughing, and this guy’s going “I don’t get it, what’s so funny about that?”. That’s not what really happened that night. What really happened is when I dropped her off, she walked inside, her roommate asked her “How was your date with Shep?”, she leaned against the dining room table and she sighed. “He’s a dream”. 

 

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