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Luck Doesn't Happen By Chance

Posted On - 27/05/2016 07:45:38

A customer says - That's brilliant, thanks for fixing my computer. Do you think - Thank you, I take pride in my work - or - Fingers crossed, this could be the start of a lucky streak?A customer says "That's brilliant, thanks for fixing my computer". Do you think "Thank you, I take pride in my work" or "Fingers crossed, could this be the start of a lucky streak?"?

Different scenario: a customer says "This bloody laptop I bought from you - it's stopped working. I knew I'd be better off at PC World!" Do you think "Another customer taking it out on me - it's so unfair", or "Mmm, that's an interesting comment, I need to fix things and get to the bottom of this"?

Like to know why your answers matter? Like to find out what they say about you and how lucky you're likely to be? Read on…

Glass half empty

There are two sorts of people in the world. And they see the same things in different ways.

One sees a customer with a broken laptop as a problem, "I hate it when the stuff I sell breaks. Why is it all computers today aren't as reliable as they used to be?" They feel personally responsible for what's happened - after all they chose to stock and sell it. It's as though the situation is their fault.

The flip side is they would see an unexpected sale as a fluke. "I don't know what I did to deserve that, but I'm glad it happened". They feel like they've been gifted, that what happened was an accident. That it's down to luck.

Glass half full

Then there's the other sort. They see the customer returning a broken laptop as a key moment. "I wish it hadn't broken – it looks bad - but at least they haven't tried to get it fixed elsewhere. I've the chance to make things right". And while they too feel regret at what's happened, they know it wasn't their fault. The laptop broke down – it's rare, but it happens.

As for unexpected good news when it comes they see it as the result of their efforts. "That sale – that's what comes of trying to be the best in town." There's no way they see good news as a gift, accident or luck. It happened because they made it.

24/7

This isn't about late July, this is about always-on. Or more it's about how the phrase "24/7" gets used. Everything is described so. Everything is "24/7". It's a generalisation – and yes, so is saying "everything is described 24/7".

But the serious point is this. It can be tempting to explain things – good or bad - in terms of generalisations. The broken laptop is the result of all computers not being as reliable any more. The unexpected sale is down to luck. So what? This way of thinking about things isn't born into us, it's learned. Like it or not, this way of thinking is the result of nurture not nature.

One swallow…

…doesn't make a summer. It's an ancient idiom – going all the way back to Aristotle, but we digress...

The point is, a chance incident – a laptop breaking down, is not evidence all computers have become more unreliable. Or that you're always making bad choices. And neither is it a freak - a bolt-from-the-blue.

It's just one breakdown.

An unexpected sale doesn't herald you're on a run. That your efforts to be the best in town are paying off. It's just one sale.

There's no way these are signs of trends, they're just one-off's. Good and bad news, that's all they are.

Posted On: May 27th, '16

Roger Whitfield

A few years ago I sold a computer to a customer, and almost immediately it went wrong, it took me a few weeks to get to the bottom of the problem during this time the computer went between the workshop and customer a number of times. Finally it was resolved by a bios update. I felt that the customer had received a poor experience and would probably never come back. Last month he came in and purchased a new computer, he mentioned the problems he had with the previous computer, but said he was so impressed that we worked really hard to fix the problem and when we did fix it we explained exactly what went wrong. He said he would never have got that level of service from PC World. So I can agree it doesn't matter if things go wrong, it's all about how you deal with it, and how well you communicate.
  
Posted On: May 31st, '16

JohnC

Joined:
2286 days, 7 hours, 35 minutes ago

Posts: 468

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Roger Whitfield posted...A few years ago I sold a computer to a customer, and almost immediately it went wrong, it took me a few weeks to get to the bottom of the problem during this time the computer went between the workshop and customer a number of times. Finally it was resolved by a bios update. I felt that the customer had received a poor experience and would probably never come back. Last month he came in and purchased a new computer, he mentioned the problems he had with the previous computer, but said he was so impressed that we worked really hard to fix the problem and when we did fix it we explained exactly what went wrong. He said he would never have got that level of service from PC World. So I can agree it doesn't matter if things go wrong, it's all about how you deal with it, and how well you communicate.
Hi Roger, thanks for giving your experiences - it's so very helpful to hear your views. Your observation is right - what matters is less what went wrong, it's how you set things right. It's easy to see these sorts as problems as your fault - but they aren't. Issues and problems can and will always happen. The mark of excellent service is how the customer (not you) feels things were handled. This is the key part. That's why it's so important to 'close' these encounters by simply saying "has everything been handled to your satisfaction?" It sounds like you could have got a testimonial out of that at the time!
  
Posted On: Jun 16th, '16

Jon Redding

Couldn't agree more. It's all about a positive mental attitude driving your own luck. It works from finding a parking space through to being asked for a quotation on the first introduction. Also, your spot on about how you deal when things go poorly. In my experience its how you respond when things go bad which determines how good your service is. Anybody can offer good service to a happy and easy customer!
  
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