Oracle of Omaha Says: Delight Your Customer
To succeed in business, or any endeavor, it will always benefit you to go above and beyond. A cornerstone of this blog is that livin' ain't easy and There's No Such Thing As A Free Lunch (TNSTAAFL if there's any fellow members of the club out there). The objective can no longer to be to satisfy your customer - it must be to delight them. Satisfaction is an expectation from any modern day business and simple satisfaction won't get you ahead. A delight is refreshing and out of the ordinary. It causes you to stop and think. Maybe even to appreciate. Or acknowledge that, maybe, just maybe, there is a real human being behind the pair of eyes staring back at you, a fresh hot latte in hand, raised to deposit the tasty beverage into yours.
When was the last time you were delighted by an experience with a customer or as a client? Isn't it just a breath of fresh air amongst the mundane "my pleasure" that people are forced to say at Chic Fil A when you thank them? It doesn't feel genuine, because it isn't. Genuine beats fake, like 99.9% of the time. The people who can tell the difference are the ones you should be targeting.
I'm personally a little insulted when someone is forced to thank me. Now, perhaps attacking a poor fast food chain is a little unfair. The people working there are just doing it for money, so you can't cultivate a genuine attitude. However, this is my blog and I can make analogies wherever I please. When I was but a young 'un, working my first job - a mom and pop boutique coffee shop in the heart of a small tourist town in southern Arizona, the owner gave me a bit of advice. Be genuine.
He didn't elaborate much, at least not that I can remember. But he did talk about the difference between being nice and being genuine. Nice says "Hi, how can I help you?" To every person that comes through the door, regardless of the lines on their face, their age, nationality, the list goes on.
Genuine says, "Good afternoon, anything looking like it'll quench that thirst?" To a person that has clearly just walked into a nice air conditioned coffee shop on a blistering summer day.
There's a difference, and it's that you acknowledge one as a human, and the other might as well be a machine. Your only job is solely to satisfy. Get them their thing. Ring them up. Make it. Serve it. Rinse. Repeat.
Genuine makes someone say, "Remember that kid in the coffee shop today? I haven't felt more at home in a strange place than there in my whole life. We were truly welcomed as though it were into another persons home. Into their passion, their life. Let's go back there next time we want a cup of joe."