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Always Right July 22, 2009

Posted by Brian L. Belen in The Daily Grind.

Many businesses treat their customers like crap.

Some may not, but if given the chance they’d like to, consciously or otherwise.

Believe it.

It’s easy to see if this is the case. Just look at their underlying corporate philosophy.

You’ve heard it before.

It’s the kind of thinking along the lines of “If you make it look nice, market it using the lowest common denominator, and sell it cheap, they won’t notice how bad a product it really is.”

It’s what underlies the notion that store attendants have to hover right behind customers who walk through their doors. Supposedly, it’s to be there to offer service, but it’s really to watch if they’re pocketing things on the sly, or worse, discreetly breaking anything.

It’s what leads to store policies or programs that promise customers one thing — discounts! rebates! prizes! — but make them go through hoops to get it (and hiding it in the fine print, besides).

Would you really want to buy anything from businesses that live up to these (low) standards?

They just get everything wrong.

The customer is not stupid. She’s your wife. (Or so the saying goes.)

The customer is not a thief. She’s your breadwinner.

The customer is not greedy. She wants good value, and is all too willing to part with her money if you are willing to provide that value.

Reality check:

If you treat your customers like they’re stupid, they are immensely stupid for patronizing your business.

If you act as if customers are thieves, you’re certainly not acting as if you want them around.

And if you make it hard for them to get the most bang for their buck, why are you even in business?



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