No News Is Not Necessarily Good News
Most companies today seem to believe that, if customers aren’t complaining, they must be satisfied, living by the philosophy that “no news is good news.” Unfortunately, that is frequently misleading. Many people don’t like to complain or confront, or simply don’t have the time.
If customers aren’t happy, they:
- Begin listening to the calls from your competitors more.
- Scrutinize more.
- Quietly go away, to be satisfied by someone other than you.
It is very important to proactively communicate with your seemingly satisfied customers. Probe deeply to find areas of vulnerability. How are your customers’ customers doing? It’s a good bet that if you’re not actively improving what you’re doing for them, the seeds of dissatisfaction are growing. Remember, once a customer finds a new provider, it’s usually too late to get them back.
Finding out what your front-line people are hearing from customers about how delighted or un-delighted they are, is a good gauge of what’s happening. These front-line people are usually the first to become aware of a problem, but they don’t automatically carry the message back to management. They’re busy doing their jobs, they may be worried about creating problems, or they simply may not think of it as anything special.
For these and countless other reasons, make sure you have periodic meetings between your management and your customer’s management teams to make sure everything is going well. It seems to go without saying, but it provides unseen opportunity to over serve, discover untapped service areas and delight customers.