5 ways to upset your customer



I’m not suggesting you create a charter which expects employees to deliberately upset customers.  I’ve come across many people who are masters at this without any encouragement or intervention.  There are even some restaurants that have made rude uncaring waiters their unique selling point which attracts diners eager for the ultimately bad experience. This is simply a technique which helps organisations find ways of getting to the next level.
Let’s take a building business as an example.  What can my builders do to upset me, their customer?
  1. Suck air sharply through their teeth whenever I enquire what this extra piece of work might cost.
  2. Cheerfully tell me some ‘cock-and-bull’ story of trouble and woe when they phone to let me down.  How many times can a van break down?
  3. Give the keys to a mini digger to my teenage son with the instruction ‘here’s the keys just in case your dad would like to play with it this weekend’
  4. Involve my wife in decision making.  She has yet to develop the counter-technique to point 1 in this list; sharp intake of breath through teeth followed by ‘I’m really not sure’.  This gets a cheaper price. Whereas when he comes to me with ‘Your wife would like …’ I ask how much?  He does no.1; quoting an extortionate price and pointing out how much she really wants it!  This is why my builder always talks to Mrs B first!
  5. Expose my neighbours to the builder’s crack.  This is not to be confused with the ‘craic’ or banter, which they like.

These might not be important to your customers but your team will know what is. Or better still, ask your customers what you do that they don’t like.   This gives you areas for improvement that will quickly make a difference. Oh, if my builder is reading this … it’s feedback.