The small details matter.
There’s a very popular book series that has enjoyed a long life on the best seller list titled, Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff.
It offers a philosophy that is immensely popular, but highly flawed as it panders to the majority by telling them what they want to hear rather than what they need to do.
As pragmatic advice on how to run a business and live a life of excellence, it’s a big steaming pile of nonsense. This is bad advice, and it spells trouble in the current economy.
All the power and leverage is with the customer and they will exercise their power by leaving one business in favor of another over very small things, things that could have easily been avoided by simply using common sense and paying attention to the small stuff.
Every business is severely and adversely affected by poor customer retention. If a customer abandons one restaurant or coffee shop for another it’s most likely NOT because of the food or coffee, but due to dissatisfaction over a small detail like;
- Having to hunt down a waiter for more coffee or the check
- Not receiving a genuine welcome or prompt greeting
- Too long on hold when making reservations
- Table conversation constantly interrupted
- Gum or debris on the ground
- Too long a wait for service
- An unclean fork or glass
- Apathetic personnel
- A filthy bathroom
- No eye contact
The cost of losing a customer is multiplied in tough times simply because there is a smaller pool of replacements and much more intense competition for them.
Do NOT be fooled by mainstream news; businesses are not suddenly upside down thanks only to a credit crunch or drop in customer spending; there’s much more to their suddenly revealed weaknesses than that. They have gone on too long not sweating the small stuff, and now they are suffering consumer’s revenge.
If you have any interest in being competitive than start sweating the small stuff because every little thing does count.
Gray Ryan Blair
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