I hate snow on the carpet in my house, the kind tracked in on shoes and boots. I can’t help it. It’s a huge pet-peeve for me. Why does it bother me? There’s something about walking around the house in winter in my socks, only to step in a frozen or wet mess. Off go the socks.
Be forewarned, that before coming over, you’ll need to remove your boots at the door. This is a no-exceptions rule except in the event there’s a repair person coming over. I give them a little slack, mostly because if it’s winter and I’ve called them out, they’re out in the cold to come help me out of a bind.
Recently, it was the cable company. I braced myself for this by putting an extra throw rug in front of the door that leads to the garage. I figured that way, I could minimize the wet, sloppy damage. So when the woman from the cable company walked in the door, after having forcefully kicked snow off her boots outside, she did the unbelievable: She grabbed a pair of waterproof boot footies from her equipment belt and promptly placed them over the soles of her boots. Voila! Ice-on-carpet scare averted.
I was shocked. I even remarked to her how great it was. You might think this is a little thing. And you’d be right. But isn’t it the little things that really matter, those little details?
If the cable woman had just carelessly walked through my house, spreading snow and ice up and down the steps and all over my carpets, I would have thought to myself, “Typical. Exactly what I expected. Another reason to hate the cable company.”
But here I am, writing about it. Writing about someone putting little waterproof footies on their boots. Believe it or not, before she even performed the work she was there to do, my impression of the cable company had improved. Then, she explained in detail the work she was going to do and within 30 minutes, had drastically improved the Internet service coming into my home. Talk about turning what could have been a routine service visit into a shining example of how customer service should be.
After all, there are a number of ways I could get Internet service into my house these days. You can use a satellite dish; cable company; phone company; my own wireless device; an iPad with service. So I have options. But this most recent experience has left me with a much improved impression of the company I do business with.
So what about you? Do you have customers that one day, you just never hear from again? Are you asking customers what you could do better? Are you making the extra effort to go to any length to find a difficult-to-find part?
Maybe it’s time to find your version of waterproof footies.