You can get with this! Or you can get with that!
This customer service lesson is so simple I almost decided not to write it out. I will share with you what happened and what I think should have happened. Tell me if you agree.
Here’s the story. I own a pair of Lucchese boots. I’ve had them for a year. It’s a nice pair and I often get compliments. Someone once told me if I was wearing them standing next to a Lamborghini, I would notice your boots. That’s a nice compliment. I never thought they were that spectacular. Anyway, I am in my favorite western store and tell my boot guy, “hey my boots are starting to wear and I want to have them a good long while.” Boot guy looked at them then produced a business card from his shirt pocket. It’s the card from a repair shop. He says, “these guys are the best around.” BG suggested that I drop them off and told me I could even use his name. I send all of my customers his way he says. Best around? Nice one! BG. Good enough for me.
I dropped by the repair late Saturday and showed the card to the counter man who turns out to be the owner. His name is on the card. I tell me he came highly recommended by BG and asked if he could remove the wear on my boots. “Sure”, he said, “when do you need them?” I said, “No hurry, how about end of the week?” He tells me, “Not a problem, pay me now though, total is $65”. Good thing I wasn’t at an auction! I handed him my AMEX without flinching. I am thinking, Boot Guy told me he was the best and you pay for the best. Go for it. I walked away with a claim check.
Waiting the week it kept popping into my mind that if repair guy is indeed the best, if he has all this equipment, my boots are going to look great… repaired, polished, ready to go. I was excited just thinking about it. I returned to the shop, the owner helps me once again, pulls a shopping bag to the counter and there they are. Repair Guy Owner quickly pulls them out and shows me the soles. I say great. He drops them back into the bag and off I go. I get them home… they weren’t polished.
I was disappointed more than anything. I can put a shine on them myself, not a problem. Hearing he was “the best” put a reasonable expectation in my mind that something more valuable than $65 was going to happen.
I guess this is what I was expecting. When I told him I was referred by BG, the first thing RG should have asked me was… “have you ever been in my shop before?” RG should have also told me “you have a nice pair of boots here and since you are a new customer, I will make sure I get the work done perfectly, so that if you… you know, stand next to a lime green Lambo or somethin’, people will notice your Luccheses.”
That’s reasonable, right? That’s the sell. Sell the sizzle? Right? He should have also made a note to contact my guy, (actually it is his guy) at the boot store to say “THANKS”. He should have mentioned “keep sending me customers you think I can help and drop by so I take care of you too.” Then maybe give him MORE CARDS, a brochure, a Baja Fresh gift card or something.
Then, do the work perfectly the first time. Before handing the boots back to me. Dress the heels, cover them in boot wax and take them to the buffer machine and put a mirror finish on them. THEN put them back in the bag. I figure that would take him 2 minutes at the most and cost next to nothing.
When I come back. SELL me on how great they look. TELL me…
“I polished them especially for you and dressed the heels and soles and SINCE YOU ARE A NEW CUSTOMER AND I MAKE A LIVING BY EXCEEDING my customer’s EXPECTATIONS.”… “WHICH not to mention GROWS MY BUSINESS, oh, did I say… I polished them MYSELF for YOU.”
Pretty simple, huh? Unreasonable?
I would have been forced at that point to tell everyone looking at (not my Lamborghini) … I’m a Corvette guy… about the guy who takes care of my boots.
If it were your business…you would have right?
Did I tell you I have another pair that need new heels? I am looking for a boot repair guy. I am open to suggestions.
Your comments or own experiences are always welcome. :0